Welcome to our church family. Whether you’re a visitor to the town, or newly moved to town, or a visitor to the website, we hope you will find the content of these pages helpful.
UPDATE JANUARY 2021: Following government guidelines, the churches remains open for public prayer and worship. At the moment, we’re offering one service (said mass) on a Sunday morning at 9.45am at St Mary’s, and a monthly service of Matins at St Agnes’. St Mary’s will also be open for said mass at 10 am on Wednesday mornings. The church community remains very active in prayer and service, so please contact us if we can help.
PLEASE NOTE: Face coverings must be worn in church (this is a legal requirement) unless you are covered by one of the permissible exemptions.
After service, people should move on promptly afterwards, to minimise the risk of contact and spread of infection. Everyone, at all times, needs to limit close physical contact with people not in their household or support bubble as much as possible.
Sunday worship also continues online (please see Service Times) and we hope other services will return to the church buildings as soon as possible.
Funerals are permitted for up to 30 people in attendance and linked services, such as the burial of ashes, for up to 6 people. Under exceptional circumstances, such as one of the couple being very ill and not expected to recover, weddings with up to 6 people in attendance can go ahead.
PLEASE NOTE that certain groups of people may be at increased risk of severe disease from COVID-19, including people who are aged 70 or older, regardless of medical conditions. Individuals who fall within this group are
advised to stay at home as much as possible and, if they do go out, to take particular care to minimise contact with others outside of their household.
Newmarket Coronavirus Helpline: 01638 667227
Latest Pew sheetNewsletter dated March 3, 2021
If you are able to make a personal visit to either St Mary’s or St Agnes’s, we think that you will find beauty and peace in these historic buildings. There are weekly services in both churches.
The two separate parishes of St Mary and St Agnes form one benefice, served by one rector. Subject to prior commitments, the Rector’s regular office hours for dealing with enquiries is on Wednesday mornings, 10.30 am – 12 noon unless otherwise advertised.
St Mary’s dates from the mediaeval period, while St Agnes’s is a victorian church. There is lots more information available on the history of both churches.
Our liturgy is varied. St Mary’s stands within the Catholic tradition of the Church of England. Sung Mass (Holy Communion) is the chief Sunday service. Matins according to the Book of Common Prayer is the regular form of worship at St Agnes, with Holy Communion once a month.
The church choir has always been central to the liturgical life of our benefice. However, it is not functioning at the present time. The organist would be happy to hear from any parishioner interested in joining. At St Mary’s, the servers, who are affiliated to a local branch of the Guild of the Servants of the Sanctuary play a key role in supporting the priest during Mass. At St Mary’s and St Agnes’s, flower arrangers help to beautify the church interiors. A team of bell ringers ring the bells of St Mary’s ring for service and for weddings as requested.
There is a local branch of the Mothers Union, which is active in ‘Christian care for families world wide’, under the guidance of branch leaders Daphne Knott and Deidre Grosvenor. They welcome new members, and for further enquiries, please contact the Rector in the first instance.
- Morning meetings: 1st Friday (of February, April, June, August, October, December) in the Turner Hall (10.00 am)
- Afternoon meetings: 1st Thursday (of March, May, July, September, November) in church (2.00 pm) followed by coffee in the Turner Hall.
- Corporate communion: the 3rd Wednesday in church, followed by coffee.
- A prayer group meets the 3rd Monday afternoon in the month.
- Members receive a newsletter from MU within the Mothers’ Union within the diocese of St Edmundsbury and Ipswich, also a quarterly magazine, Home and Family, and an annual prayer diary. For further information about the work of the Mothers’ Union worldwide, visit www.themothersunion.org and www.muenterprises.co.uk.
Marriages and Christenings
If you live locally (within either parish) or have local links, and are thinking of getting married in church or of having your child christened, the rector is happy to discuss this with you. For further information regarding the legalities surrounding marriage or christenings in a parish church, visit www.cofe.anglican.org/lifeevents and follow the links.
St Mary’s serves Houldsworth Valley Community Primary School, and, from time to time, has been represented on the governing body. The organist and rector have assisted in collective worship. St Mary’s and St Agnes’s both associate with Fairstead House Preparatory School. Visits by groups of children and teachers into ‘their’ church for educational or worship purposes are built into each school’s curriculum.