Thornhill Parish Church

Serving the local community


Check out all the latest events on our Concerts page-click here

The Real meaning of Christmas Exhibition in Church December 6 & 7th.  Pictures at

Annual Bazaar 2014

What a lovely atmosphere in church with lots of people enjoying themselves.  No Black Friday weekend here just good fun and friends getting interesting and unique things to buy. We raised just over £2000 and thanks to everyone concerned for making this a success- both colleagues from church and visitors.
see pictures here.. Our star visitor enjoying himself

Great news we have been awarded a large grant from the Pilling Trust towards the work needed on our organ. The organ is a JJ Binns from 1907 Which has been in the church for 30 years and is in need of some tender loving care. A grateful thanks to them for this confidence in our project.


Trees- the latest round of tree felling is complete but there are still more that need attention. This major work has generated some logs which are for sale - contact 01924 527545- removing them without permission is theft!The money raised will help us with the further work that is required. Thanks for your understanding.

Trees rotten 2Trees rotten 1

2 photos to show why they were dangerous


at Whitley

Gift Day - Saturday November 8th 11.00 – 2.00

Once a year we have a gift day at St Mary and St Michael’s when we invite people to donate what they can for the upkeep of the church. This may be in money or a promise to commit time and energy to the work of the church in this community. Come and join us for refreshments and talk to us about what the church means to you.

Lighting up the Village Christmas Tree

Tuesday 25th November at 5.45 pm

Come and join us on the Village Green for the traditional lighting of the tree, sing carols and enjoy mince pies, tea/coffee or sherry all for free. Everybody welcome


Yorkshire Imps Concert 25th October.  Super concert on this their first visit. Band in really good form and innovative programming. Sponsored by Mr & Mrs Dennis Halstead.  Many thanks to them for a splendid occasion and  a good profit for Church Funds.


Baptism of James Broxholme yesterday October 26th


Angels Cafe- the weekly cafe staffed by volunteer Angels in Thornhill Parish have raised £1800 so far this year. Congratulations.  See Here the schedule. The cafe is available every Wednesday from 1130- 1000 for light lunches and good fellowship.


New Bishops Consecrated in York Minster on Saturday 18th October   for the first time there is a new Bishop of Huddersfield

Click here to go to the full story


Harvest Time - kids!  it was a busy time today at Children's Activity morning- home made pizzas were made,harvest wreaths and our poster. All about harvest at home on our local farms.

Type Harvest Kids Thorhill in to You Tube and there is a tiny bit of video.



The churchyard...following all the presss and social media publicity recently (August 2014) it is important that everyone knows th position in which the church finds itself and the following statement from the Diocese clarifies this
'Every Diocese has Churchyard Regulations and here at Thornhill, Dewsbury in the Diocese of West Yorkshire and the Dales we are no different. This is a legal process over which the local vicar has absolutely NO jurisdiction and can only try their best to help and advise the families.The local vicar in this case tried to do just that by writing to all the families earlier this summer explaining the situation, offering to talk to any families and visiting the churchyard to advise families on how best to look after their graves. We understand the families’ concerns and are saddened that a resolution has not been achieved in every case.The Churchyard Regulations were put in place to preserve the amenity for the parish and the community for its benefit and enjoyment, to ensure good practice is observed and to help the maintenance and management of parish churchyards'.

see also churchyard section of this site here

Buggy Praise Teddy Bears Picnic 2014.... about 40 people attended this popular annual party at the Rectory.See pictures here

New Rector for Thornhill and Vicar for Whitley!!
The Venerable Anne Dawtry, Archdeacon of Halifax inducted our Priest in Charge Rev Sue Clarke to be Rector of Thornhill and Vicar of Whitley.  The service took place in Thornhill Parish Churh on Yorkshire Day 1st August in the presence of the Mayor and Mayoress of Kirklees. This apparently unecessary act is of great siginificance as it also lifts the suspension of presentation which stopped the Patron Lord Savile presenting a suitable person for these posts should Sue leave. The ancient link was therefore restored.  Sue promised allegiance to the new Bishop of Leeds.see more photos here

WW1 Commemoration

We’re looking to put up an exhibition for Heritage Weekend of memorabilia from WW1 but had very poor response from the congregation so far. Especially we thought it would be good to have wedding photos from couples who got married at Thornhill Church but anyone who has a link today with Thornhill would be welcome . If anybody still has an old wedding dress from this era that would be amazing. Also if anybody has a cook book from 1914-18 we may just try to cook an original recipe – maybe!! But any photos or mementoes from that time that we can exhibit would be appreciated especially if they are local. Contact the Rector via the link

Don't forget our concert Smile, Smile Smile aon 13th September
see poster here for full details


Rectory Park -across the road from the churchyard is the wonderful Thornhill Rectory Park which was once the home of the Rectors of Thornhill. There has always been a close contact with the park and the church. The Friends of Rectory Park (click here ) have a new website 'Rectory Park gone wild' click here to see it. There are some wonderful pictures to look at here. There is a super picture too of the spitfire which came to our Summer Fair.
Our new Diocese is now firmly establsihed and working. West Yorkshire and the Dales . Our new Diocesan Bishop is Rev Nick Baines who is called the Bishop of Leeds follow him on Twitter here where he is a prolific 'tweeter'. If you would like to see the recording of his enthronement in Wakefeild Cathdral on You Tube click here.
Rev Nick Baines

We also have a new Archdeacon for the  Episcopal Area of Huddersfield in which we now are placed. She is the Ven Dr Anne Dawtry -still called Archdeacon of Halifax.  Confused? do not worry just keep coming to church.

First World War Centenary August 4th 2014
You are invited to come to church either at Whitley or Thornhill

see poster here for full details

WW1 Centenery Commemoration

Please do share your moment via your personal and professional networks - social media, website, e-news etc.

Follow us @1418NOW
Like us on Facebook/1418NOW
Search and tag using #LIGHTSOUT


Summer Fair  Saturday July 12 2014- what a wonderful day- good weather; good fellowship; good fun; good food and plemty to do created a wonderful atmosphere at the our summer day out in the church and grounds.  We raised over £2,200  towards our work in the community and maintaining the churchand it's worship - about the cost of 10 days in the year!
Dewsbury Intermediate Wind BandBBQThornhillJIN Community choir

Click here for more pictures


Congratulations to Reverend Kate Currie on her ordination last Saturday  5th July 2014 at Wakefield Cathedral by Bishop Tony. Kate now starts her curacy at Scissett and Clayton West

Revd Kate Currie with Bishop Tony


Spitfire Flypast - Summer Fair July 12th 2014

A flypast by a Battle of Britain Memorial Flight Spitfire is expected to make the annual Summer Fair at Thornhill Parish Church near Dewsbury a special occasion this year. The Summer Fair, which is one of the principal social events in the Church’s calendar is set to take place on Saturday 12th July between 11am and 3pm in the Church Grounds. The flypast by the plane, reminiscent of the Battle of Britain in 1940 will be around 1pm, and is expected to add a touch of nostalgia to the day.

We were delighted when we learned earlier this year that our request for the fly past was successful and to enhance the event have managed to acquire two limited edition plates, each depicting a Spitfire, for sale by auction on the day. One by Royal Doulton and is titled ‘Spitfire Coming Home’, the other is by Coalport and is titled ‘Dawn Patrol’. (a picture of the two plates is also attached.

A further special feature of the day will be the sale of Spitfire Bitter in the Savile Arms pub adjacent to the Church yard. This brand of beer was first brewed by the Shepherd Neame Brewery in Kent to mark the 50th anniversary of the Battle of Britain in1990 and has been a popular drink ever since.

The event is located on Church Lane, Thornhill, two miles south of Dewsbury, post code WF12 0JZ.

Chasubles for Children   click title for story
Eileen Gaunt with the children wearing the new chasubles she has made.




Angels Cafe have made the following donations to Charity so far in 2014. Well done and thank you to them and all those who support the cafe.

Angels Café Donations 2014      Breast Cancer                              £100

. Big Brew (Traidcraft)                      150

 Water Aid                                    150

 Thornhill Church                              100 

Kirkwood Hospice                             150

 The Howland Centre                         200

British legion                                   50

 Spinal Injuries Association                  150



The Garden Party at Thornhill Rectory was a great community success on Sunday 18th May with dancing by Mummers and Maypole dancing by the children of Overthorpe Academy--+ cakes and tea and the STOCKS! Photos to follow.  A welcome financial success also.


What a weekend at our Church on the weekend of April 28th 2014

From a first for us on the Friday a Ceilidh in church. Over 180 people attended and the church nave was used for the Ron Darnbrough and Crab apples Band. Raising £1191 for church funds and welcoming many new people into our church.  
        See more pictures at

Then a transformation for the Celebration Band from Mount Pellon offering a new style of worship on Saturday.

Then a transformation for normal Sunday worship followed by our Annual Church meetings.  Diane Goodwin and Susan Lane were elected as churchwardens.

Palm Sunday this year saw a very special service of thenksgiving for 125 years of the Wakefield Diocese. Held in Wakefield Cathedral and attended by church and civic leaders both local and international. The service marked the end of the Wakefield Diocese and looked forward to the new Diocese. It also marked the departure of Bishop Stephen to pastures new in London.
We praise Him for all that is past and trust Him for all that is to come. see Twitter under Wakefield Cathedral for more pictures.

Bishop Stephen preaches Celebration Service 1

a new chalice for every church to use on Easter Day to welcome the Resurrection  and the birth of the new Diocese of Leeds



 More pictures may be seen at





WW 1
This year marks 100 years since the start of World War 1.During Heritage Weekened in September  this year we would like to commemorate the Anniversary with an exhibition n Thornhill Parish Church of locak memories. If you had a relative affected by WW1 or have any memorabilia or photos and would be able to share thm with us we would be grateful.  Please contact Rev Sue Clarke or Brian Pearson or Tony Ridley- see contacts pageThe churchyard has two Commonwealth War Graves and hosts the War Memorial for Thornhill. there are other war memorials insiode the church.

Preserving the Past of Thornhill in Dewsbury Reporter February 14th 2014  Did you see this well written article about the works that have been going on in our church over the last few years. There is a copy up in church or you might find it on their web site. Well work is now finally complete apart from a little snagging and we finally have our church back just in time for Lent. It looks fine and everything is now safe and preserved for future generations.

Click here for the images  and here for the report of the conservation of the monument to Sir George and Lady Anne Savile 1614 by Elliott Ryder Conservation


For children--  Buggy Praise and Children's Activitiy groups have restarted.  See the Families page for more information. Here


Happy New Year to you all - our Family Praise Epiphany Service is at 9.30 on Sunday January 5th 2014- come and celebrate the arrival of te Kings. On the 7th January it will be ten years since Buggy Praise was started in our church. Come on and Celebrate again.

Advent Wreath exhibition- a hugely successful weekend with lots for everyone to see and hear.

Pictures are here-


Sir George Savile & Lady Anne Savile Reconstruction- work is now completed on installing the steel supporting frame inside the monument. A major engineering job will now lead to the monument being able to be rebuilt and conserved.  Five and a half tons of rubble was excavated from the interior and interesting 16th century paintings found (see below). The work is being carried out under the English Heritage/ Heritage Lottery scheme funding,  by Elliot Ryder conservators.


Angels Cafe donations to charity now tops £1000
click link below for full list



Monument restoration- work is now being carried out to restore the 1614 monument to Sir George and Lady Anne Savile which straddles the Savile Chapel Chapel.  It has posed huge technical problems in making it safe for future generataions to see.  Interesting early 16th century painting was found behind the pillars.  These have been recorded and will then be coverered up.

Children worked hard on learning about Homelessness and built this mock house out of cardboard  November 2013

Roof Repairs - work has now been completed on the urgent high level roof repairs

A Hard Days Night - something different - a charity fundraising video shot in Thornhill Parish Church based on the Lennon & McCarthy song =by one of our helpers Eddie Cassidy

Major Work     The next phase of major work starts on Monday 30th of September and during the first week the church will be difficult to use. As a result of this the Wednesday morning sevice will be at Whitley as will the cafe. A scaffold will be erected outside to carry out urgent roof repairs and a scaffold will be erected in church to block off the Savile Chapel and the Chancel - half way down each. If you come to Harvest on October 6th you will see our banners on the scaffold 4metres wide and 4.5 metres long showing the two East windows. This promises to be a unique experience.

The work being done inside church is the conservation and making safe of the monument to Sir George Savile and Lady Anne Savile 1614. This major structural work will be carried out by Kieran Elliott from Elliott Ryder conservators from Wales assisted by ARC stone masons of York.. Walter West of Dewsbury will be in charge of the scaffolding to assist this work.

__30.09.2013___updated 22nd October 2013_______________________________________________________________

What a super Heritage weekend and Flower festival - a brilliant community event supported by over 20 organisation in the village each showing their own interpretation of life in the communiy.

See You Tube Video here
or here

 WORK starts on the 10th September for a concentrated 3 months on the final stage of our conservation work. Elliott Ryder come to finish work on the conservation of the smaller monuments not so far done and then in early October on the major Sir George Savile 1614 monument which straddles the Savile Chapel when a steel supporting cage will be installed inside the monument. Work on this monument require scaffolding across the Savile Chapel and the Chancel which will be done in the week beginning September 30th. This will also display large size photos of the two East Windows
. Work will also start on the roof repairs and on the changes to the central heating.
  In the churchyard further dangerous trees are to be felled.                                                    
posted 9th September 2013


Welcome to the re-named Cafe - now known as The Angels  Cafe- continuing in the same tradition as SIDZ cafe  it will still provide excellent lunches in church every Wednesday from 11.15 until 1.00.  A bonus in this cafe is a chance to meet and talk and foster friendship. On most weeks a further bonus is to listen to our incredible pianist Colin Kneen playing music of yesteryear. What's more it has a 5* hygiene rating.   Not been - try it - you will enjoy yourselves.

The cafe is hosted by the church but run on a voluntary basis by 3 'Angels' and a few 'cherubs'. Whilst managing to provide a community facility it also raises funds for local charities such as Traidcraft, Candlelighters and Dewsbury Womens Refuge.

___________________________________posted 9th September 2013

Jonathan Cooke our Glass conservator was filmed recently about his conservation work and the making of the new window -for our new interactive display unit.

Work on the Rufford memorial 1714
this work funded by the Heritage Lottery Fund and Churchcare restored, conserved and made safe this momument in the North East corner of the Savile Chapel. It now complements the new East window and the Sir George Savile 1622 .

9th August 2013

TOP Craftsmen in Savile chapel

Two of the top craftsmen in the country are working on the next stage of conservation in the church. Kieran Elliott our monuments expert is working on the repair and conservation of the last few monuments in the Savile Chapel and the South Choir Aisle .  Jonathan Cooke our Stained Glass conservator is preparing the old glass from the Savile Chapel East Window for redisplay in the new display unit being cretaed off site at the moment. 

                                                    Jonathan Cooke at work.

6th August 2013

Summer Fair 13th July 2013--- What a Day  one of the hottest days of the year and we all survived - most without too much dehydration.A wonderful day for the whole community having fun, meeting old and new friends and bringing the community together,  We raised just over £2800 towards the ongoing work of the church in the community. A new display this year was from the Birstall wood working group which created lots of interest.
A few photos here  

Church Paths      We are delighted to report that work on the main paths around the church have been completed - once again with help from the Big Lottery Fund. We have a safe environment for everyone to be able to enjoy visits to the church and chuchyard. The workmen battled through some of the worst weather to complete this difficult project.  On Wednesday July 3rd work started on the Upper lychgate path by Conservation Volunteers - call in to help if you are feeling fit.  See ful story below      02.07.2013


On the Move  congratulations to our Rural Dean Paul Maybury who is moving to a new post in Cyprus.
'The following announcement has been made the Diocese of Cyprus and the Gulf Missioner in the South East Cyprus Chaplaincy (Diocese of Cyprus and the  Gulf; Province of The Episcopal Church in Jerusalem and the Middle East)The Bishop of Cyprus and the Gulf, the Rt Revd Michael Lewis intends tolicense Paul on the 1st December'  02.0713


Visit to Hope Street Mosque  click here to read Rev Sue's report


Our new window was part of a conference in Florida in May 2013   American Glass Guild   2013 Conference  May 15-19, 2013 This paper presents the story of the window: its fascinat­ing iconography, possibly unique in stained glass; its history, and an overview of the scientific and pastoral aspects of the controversial decisions to displace the medieval glass, and to recreate the window. Jonathan will also describe the process­es in his reconstruction of this window, from initial research­es and  cartoons to the glass painting techniques employed.


 Access and Care of paths to Historic Church and Churchyard
We are dleighted that we have been awarded a grant of £10,000 from the Big Lottery to enable us to repair the majority of our paths around the church- the main access paths to the churchyard. This grant enables us to maintain good, safe and disabled access to these historic resources in Thornhill.

Work is progressing well on the Paths around the church and they will be finished for the Spring Bank Holiday 2013. Work on the top lychgate path is planned.

Visit Thornhill Parish Church on You Tube

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