The Church of England in Claydon and Barham, Henley and Great Blakenham

For enquiries please contact:
The Revd Cathy Austin, 01473 830100
The Revd Diane Williams, Rural Dean, 01449 720316

The first signs of spring are starting to appear with green shoots of flowers poking their heads out into cold winter sunshine.
Shrove Tuesday, or Pancake Day, takes place in February. It’s an important day in the Christian calendar and takes place the day before Ash Wednesday, the first day of Lent.

Shrove Tuesday falls February 16 and we would, in normal times, welcome many to Gt Blakenham Parish Room to enjoy a feast of pancakes and have a social evening with friends and family. Sadly, this cannot happen this year but we hope you enjoy your pancakes wherever you are!

What is it all about? Traditionally, Shrove Tuesday was the last opportunity to use up eggs and fats before embarking on the fast for Lent. Making pancakes is a simple and tasty way to use up all those ingredients!

Ash Wednesday marks the beginning of Lent. This year, it falls on February 17. Often called the Day of Ashes, Ash Wednesday starts Lent by focusing the Christian’s heart on repentance and prayer, usually through personal and communal confession.

We now move into a time of reflection and repentance as we head towards Lent. If you would like to start thinking through and observing Lent and Ash Wednesday, here are a few verses specific to Ash Wednesday to meditate and reflect on.

Genesis 2:7: “Then the Lord God formed a man from the dust of the ground and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life, and the man became a living being.”

Genesis 3:19: “By the sweat of your brow you will eat your food until you return to the ground since from it you were taken; for dust you are and to dust you will return.”

Psalm 51:7- 10: “Cleanse me with hyssop, and I will be clean; wash me, and I will be whiter than snow. Let me hear joy and gladness; let the bones you have crushed rejoice. Hide your face from my sins and blot out all my iniquity. Create in me a pure heart, O God, and renew a steadfast spirit within me.”


Our churches continue to support the community we have amongst us and those who wish for support and to hear God’s word. Services listed on the website, pew sheets and Facebook may be subject to change due to current restrictions.

Zoom services continue to take place at 9.30am on the first and third Sundays. If you would like to join us, please email Wendy Hooper at for details.

Currently, we have a Service of Holy Communion at Barham Church every Wednesdays at 10am, on the first, second and fourth Sundays at 10am, and at 8am on the third Sunday. To attend a service, please with Jonathan Dedman on 01473 830890 or Social distancing is observed and everyone attending a service in church is required to wear a face covering.

Gt Blakenham Church is open for private prayer on Saturdays from 10am-noon, and Henley Church on Sundays from 2-4pm. Again, this may be subject to change due to regulations.

Please see our Facebook page or website for updated information.

The next Gt Blakenham quiz is on Friday 26 February, 7 for 7.15pm via Zoom. Contact for details and to book your place. A big thank you to all who have supported our online quizzes over recent times.

Where we begin our Lenten journey
is not as important as where it takes us.

In the same way, what we give up, take on, or do for Lent
is not as important as what those things do for us.

Many thanks to all who contribute to our pages.

Facebook: The Claydon Group of Churches

Barham Church Hall: Zoe Groom, 831804
Gt Blakenham Parish Room: Reg Barton, 839958