Village News – February 2013

News from Chingestone Abbas

Having just returned from a fascinating talk by Reg Saville about Kingston, I was surprised to discover some interesting facts about the village. It was lovely to hear about the origins of the unusual cottages and hard to believe that the original road from Corfe didn’t follow Kingston Hill as we know it, but came along West Street, Corfe Castle across what is now the Common, up towards Blashenwell and through the woods.

Did you know the original village settlement was in the field behind the old school, as the Swanage road (track probably ) followed the ridge so didn’t have a big bend near the Kingston Courtyard? Also there used to be a sail and rope factory on the track towards the sea and a bakery in the Lane (but perhaps not at the same time). What surprised me most was the fact that the Parish of Chingeston (Kingston) originally included the land around Corfe and Langton Maltravers, as it became known.

St James’

The Church of St James, commissioned by the 3rd Earl of Eldon, had already been started when he commanded his architect, George Edmund Street, to include an additional turret. Also it seems when first used, there were (red) padded chairs, as it was then a private chapel. (Until hearing that, I thought the current wooden seats were the original ones). Many other details are featured in the book which will soon be available – and I’m sure it will be of real interest to Kingston residents (it will also contain illustrations).

It is far safer to read Reg Saville’s history than rely on my recollections. Hopefully, there will be more details next time on how to get hold of the book. By the way, in the Church there is a very well presented booklet (£1) for locals and visitors to St James, kindly written and illustrated by Terry Hardy. There is also a large bound copy which Terry produced, which includes many of the photos used in the History Exhibition.


It is too easy to forget how much things change. If you do have any special memories about Kingston, please do let Terry know: As a little girl, I can remember dressing up for the last children’s party held in the old school or school house, though I wasn’t old enough to attend there. I still remember my 10 years at The Lookout, especially in 1963 when the blizzard hit and the top road was filled with snow drifts – for weeks it was like travelling along a snow tunnel to get to school at St George’s. I think the snow stayed on the hills for about three months, from Boxing Day 1962 till March 1963.

Spring Clean

Now, back to the present and our plans for the future. We are hoping to have a good Spring Clean at St James’ Church 10am on Monday, 11 February. If anyone is able to join us we would welcome an extra pair if hands, even for just an hour. We are very grateful to Fred, our regular cleaner, but as we all know, the place is big, high and we also want to tackle some of the brass to have the place looking lovely for the first wedding in March.

There are 6 weddings at Kingston this year. If you are free, we would love you to join us and we will have the coffee pot ready! At least it is a pleasant temperature there with our new storage heaters working well.

Judy Forgan, PCC Secretary

Village News – January 2013

Firstly, I want to offer a huge thank you to all of those who contributed in any way to the Purbeck Christmas Tree Festival, especially to all those who sponsored and decorated the trees, also to the kind people who gave their time to prepare the Church and serve the refreshments, from right across the Benefice and beyond.

Also we had some beautiful music contributions which added to the special atmosphere ranging from visiting hand bell ringers, as well as various singing groups and soloists. This included the Local Vocals, St George’s School Choir, Roni Merison, Roderick Rayley, Felicity Smith, the May Day Singers, Isle of Purbeck Arts Club Choir and Canzonetta, who gave a lovely festive concert amid the trees, truly a memorable experience.

However, I now want to thank all those who visited and were so generous with their donations; we were thrilled to find that the event, even after expenses, raised nearly £2000 pounds, enabling us to pass on £1000 to Julia’s House and perhaps start to look at replacing some of the ageing chairs in the Church. Martin Edwards, Chief Executive of the local children’s hospice, gave a very moving talk about the difficulties that families face and how the work of Julia’s House supports families and very sick children. So thank you all for your support of this very worthy cause.

Our thanks also go to The Scott Arms for hosting the Christmas Party and also all who helped with the Christingle Service this year.

Now that Christmas is behind us it is time to be looking ahead and mindful of any changes we need to make ourselves, in our own lives. Each new year brings fresh challenges (or should we say opportunities) as things never stay quite the same. One thing that won’t be the same for those in Kingston is the big gap that will be left in the village community when dear George and Rosemary Pitman leave.

They have both been such stalwarts in Kingston and always so available to people. Often, we don’t miss something or someone until they are no longer about. Please don’t let this be the case with George and Rosemary. Let’s really appreciate them now, but at the same time realise that we will be needing willing people to replace their vital role in Kingston.

I don’t live in Kingston, but I know I will miss all the ‘help’ that is given on a regular basis. Please begin to think of how, as an individual, you may be able to help fill this gap. (for example who will do their Dubber deliveries, when they go?)

New year – new beginnings– new desires – new me – (new diet?) How many expectations do we impose on ourselves at this time? Often we try too hard for it to be realistic. So as we move into 2013, perhaps it is a time to reflect on and appreciate all our blessings first and then begin to ‘ treasure up these things and ponder them in our heart’ ( just as Mary did after having baby Jesus).

Having done that, we could then seek God’s will for our lives in 2013…. Just a simple quiet prayer like.. ….Thank you heavenly Father, for all the special things in my life (for example, family, friends, home, ) now Lord, what do you want me to try in 2013? Then don’t be afraid to see what He has in mind. He will see us through, for sure.

Best wishes for a very happy, healthy and satisfying New Year.

Judy Forgan