Keep on Walking
Mike Claridge - 19th August 2013
Roundabout - September 2013
St Andrew's, West Bromwich
Keep on Walking!
This month we’ll be holding our annual Sponsored Walk. It isn’t too arduous, the “long walk” is just over five miles and there’s a shorter option of about three miles. It’s also nice and flat with around a third of the distance being on canal tow paths. The longer walk is based on the parish boundary so come and find out where it is! Put Sunday 15th September in your diaries. We’ll be starting just after 11.00 am. Come and enjoy a leisurely walk around the parish boundary.
Our walk at St Andrew’s is a tradition only going back a few decades but the custom of walking around the boundary of a parish has a very long history. It’s origins go back to before the Norman Conquest and is sometimes called “Beating the Bounds”. Back long ago maps were rare and, so that knowledge of where boundaries were could be passed down the generations, an annual walk around the boundary took place. The boundary could be defined by streams, trees or large stones and the annual walk meant people knew exactly where it was even if they couldn’t read or write. It came to serve another purpose too as it was often carried out at Rogation days (25th April and the weekdays after Ascension) when crops were blessed. The prayers would be said as the walk took place, praying for the area contained within the boundary.
If you take part in our Sponsored Walk you’ll find out where our boundary is. Being an urban parish it doesn’t follow natural markers but, as the town of West Bromwich grew, parish boundaries were defined along canals and roads. It’s an exercise in history, geography and good exercise too.
If you enjoy walking why not try something more arduous? There’s a local groups offering free travel to the mountains of England and Wales. West Bromwich Mountaineering Club is the oldest and most active climbing club in the West Midlands. It arranges both walks and more ambitious climbs throughout the year. They’ve recently secured some funding to make some free seats available on their coaches - all you have to do to qualify is to be a West Bromwich resident. Complete beginners are welcome. The club meets every Thursday evening from 9pm in The Wheatsheaf so go along and find out more or telephone Paul Brindley on 07813 102014 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
Changing the subject now. We have a date later this year for our Confirmation and Membership Service. If you, or someone you know, is interested in taking the step of making this commitment please let me know.
Confirmation and Membership Service
Sunday 1st December 2013 at 9.30am
Preacher: The Rt Revd Jonathan Gledhill, Bishop of Lichfield.