For those of you who are unfamiliar with the framework of the Church of England, Deaneries provide a link between Parochial Church Councils and their Dioceses. The Diocese of Southwell (pronounced SUTH-EL as in southern, southerly and Southwark - and included in the Domesday Book under its original name of Sudwelle) has fifteen Deaneries; Bawtry, Mansfield, Newark, Newstead, Retford and Worksop in the Newark Archdeaconry and Beeston, Bingham, South Bingham, West Bingham, GEDLING, Nottingham Central, Nottingham North, Nottingham West and Southwell in the Nottingham Archdeaconry.

Gedling Deanery encompasses the following fifteen parishes (in alphabetical order of location):

(All of the photographs included are actual postcards from the early twentieth century.)

St. Mary's, Arnold

Link to Holy Trinity.
Holy Trinity, Bulcote

Link to St. Helen's.
St. Helen's, Burton Joyce

St. John the Baptist's, Carlton

St. Paul's, Carlton

No link to St. John's is available.
St. John the Baptist's, Colwick

All Hallows, Gedling

St. John the Baptist's, Gunthorpe

Link to Holy Trinity.
Holy Trinity, Lambley

No link to St. Mary's is available.
St. Mary the Virgin's, Lowdham

St. George's, Netherfield

St. James', Porchester (Mapperley)

St. Luke's, Stoke Bardolph

St. Swithun's, Woodborough

St. Mark's, Woodthorpe

(In the cases where a parish is represented on the Internet, a link to their homepage has been built into the relevant name above.)

The purpose of a Deanery is to feed information from the Diocese (and General Synod) to all those who take an interest in Church life. It would be impractical for everyone to attend General Synod meetings so each Parish appoints representatives to be members of the Deanery Synod and each Deanery appoints members to represent them on the Diocesan Synod. In turn, the Diocese elects representatives to attend meetings held by the General Synod and so the flowchart is completed from the Archbishop down to every member of a church congregation!

Deaneries are responsible for the fellowship and spirituality of their parishes, whilst offering any assistance they are in a position to provide. Additionally, with the deaneries' links with their parishes, dioceses are able to fairly determine parish shares. A parish share is the amount of funding a church contributes to the running of their diocese - not just for administration, but essentially the incumbents' stipends and maintenance of the vicarages, etc.

If you would like to contact the Deanery, messages may be sent using this link.

To be continued…

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1997-2004 Nigel Edwards Walker