PLANS to boost the congregation at a village church near Uttoxeter have been given a helping hand by talented musicians from Denstone College.
A heaving Rangemore Church gave the private school’s jazz ensemble and swing band a rapturous reception as 150 people turned out to support the event last week.
And organiser Anne King, who regularly attends services at the church, was ‘delighted’ that entrance fees and donations took the total raised to £1,300.
The cash will go towards a new heating system designed to encourage more parishioners to attend Sunday services.
Rev Les Rees said his congregation had dwindled and he believed this was partly due to the cold temperatures inside the 150-year-old building.
He said: “Like many churches around the country, we’re short of cash and this event has helped us no end.
“The building is cold in the summer and freezing in the winter and that puts people off.
“There are a lot of things that need addressing in the building but installing an effective heating system is a priority for us.
“We’d just like to thank Anne for her efforts in organising the event and to the school’s fantastic bands for their stupendous efforts.
“They gave a wonderful concert of varied music under the direction of musical director Mike Skipper and ended in a true Proms style with the national anthem and Land of Hope and Glory.
The church was built by the Bass family in 1867 and associated brewing firm Molson Coors has pledged £250 to help Rev Rees’ fund-raising efforts.
Historically, congregations benfitted from staff and visitors at nearby Rangemore Hall being encouraged to attend Sunday services.
Anyone with any other fund-raising ideas is asked to call Rev Rees on 01283 810615.