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St Francis Church, Clifton

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Can anyone remember the beginnings of the church?

When we first moved to Clifton - I think about 1953 whilst it was still being built - there was no church, just a Wimpey hut near where the Winning Post pub is now, which made do as a church, and venue for the Young Wives club, to which my mother belonged.

I recall being given paper envelopes with sections to put threepenny bits in. Each threepence would buy a brick and they were handed in regularly. I think the residents of the estated helped build the church themselves.

The first vicar was, I think, the Rev Stephen Verney, who later went on to become a bishop somewhere. He gave me and my sister our first (and only) bibles because we didn't have one. I've just googled him and found this picture and that he was the son of a baronet with a very distinguished war record. He died in 2009, aged 90

stephen_verney_1521866f.jpg

After him there was a nice chap whose name I can't recall, but if you went to the youth club and took your Latin homework, he would help you with it. Actually, he'd do it for you!

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I'm not the most religious person on the planet, so I'm a bit out of my depth here, but..........

I don't really remember the name of Stephen Verney - maybe he was a bit early for me; but I think (may be wrong) that his successor was a man called Whittaker.

I definitely remember that by the late 1960s it was a guy called Christopher Aldridge.

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I can't rarely comment on who the vicar was but was chased down Farnborough Road by one of them for ringing the bell after one Sunday morning service, that would be 59/60. St Francis I mainly remember for the Saturday night dances that went on for years in the church hall.

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I think Christopher Aldridge was the kind vicar who used to do our Latin homework for us - I'd forgotten his name till you mentioned it.

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Bump

Another Pathe News clip from 1957 , showing the old and the new church in Clifton and the Rev. Verney.

Plenty of shots of some of the locals that may be of interest to someone someday ?

http://www.britishpathe.com/video/home-made-church/query/nottingham

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This Forum is infectious.

Thanks for posting that wonderful clip from pathe, my older Brother was head choirboy on the day of the filming.

Another pathe extended clip of the same event exists somewhere. My younger Brother and myself were "enlisted" into the choir a few years later.

I do remember Stephen Verney & later Cristopher Aldridge. One of the attractions of choir membership was a nice fee received for attending baptisms, wedding & funerals.

Looking back it was quite mercenary, we continued as "sopranos" after our voices had started to break (so as not to miss out) by miming part of the time. They did not have vacancies in other departments of the choir! A Mr Vasey was the choirmaster / organist, he used to cycle over from Mapperley I think, and would play the organ still wearing his bike clips!

We even had a go at (officially) ringing the bell from time to time, but all of this stopped after moving to Fairham, it was looked upon as being a bit soppy by our growing number of school mates.

Local shops on Varney Road that I can remember:- Marsdens Grocery, Dewhursts Butchers, Fourboys Newsagents and the Co-op at the top opposite the school entrance.

On the days that the latter was closed you could always hear a strange eerie noise coming through the gap in the glass doors "whoooo" Of course it was the wind, but stories went around that the place was haunted on Thursdays! This was probably a way of stopping kids loitering outside on the way home from school.....

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I've been in that church just once, in 1962 when I was a 12 year old Godmother! On that day 6 of my young cousins were baptized at the same time.

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Hi VW Golf a great reminder I got married at St Francis church on the 26 March 1977 the vicar was Frank Crowther. If you Google Frank Crowther vicar in Nottingham it will bring up chapter 1 Clifton Methodist church then click on it and will tell you the history about St Francis , and yes I am still married.

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In the 1960s the organist was a Bill vasey. He used to play for 'Evensong' on Sundays. I went a few times. Mr Vasey was a part time music teacher when

I was at Trent Bridge Boys school.

Kind regards,

Tony

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Smiffy 49 #6.

My mum worked at the Co-op on Varney Road for a few years in the 1960s. In the summer holidays of 1964 I'd fallen out with my girlfriend Carol, and my mum suggested that I went and helped her in the grocery dept to take my mind off it. She was responsible for weighing and wrapping the veg and wet fish to go out onto the shelves. I remember driving her mad 'cos the idea was to get everything weighed and wrapped really quickly to get them out onto the shelves nice and fresh, but I insisted on trying to make the portions of fish weigh exactly 4, 8, or 12 ozs!

Our daughter lives in Clifton these days and when I drive round that area I'm really shocked at how far downhill everything seems to have gone now.

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That cross was made by a Polish guy who came to the UK as a refugee during the war. My cousin helped to paint the mural on the ceiling..

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3 hours ago, Cliff Ton said:

Now demolished. Makes me feel old because I'm slightly older than it was.

 

 

Same with Gedling School , now being demolished and 10 years younger than me .

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Used to play table tennis in the church Hall in the sixties Remember one vicar who had dogs he used to take on Clifton playing fields and In the scout woods near the black path but can't recall his name 

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Gosh!  Eight years since I posted!
Thanks for the pictures of the demolition.

What is the land going to be used for?  More student housing?
 

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Nice to see you're still around VWG...even after 8 years.

 

It's difficult to find any information about what will happen to the site. The City Council Planning Applications don't appear to mention it at all.

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