Churchwardens at St Peter's
Churchwardens have been elected at St Peter’s Church since at least the reign of Elizabeth I. Church archives show that in 1558 (the year of her accession to the throne of England) £42-0-11½d was levied from 27 townships within the Parish of Prestbury and was given to the churchwardens for the maintenance of St Peter’s Church. From 1560 onwards there are a number of churchwardens accounts showing how they paid for church maintenance and staff such as the Parish Clerk, Verger and Sexton. Since 1671 the two pews on either side of the west door have been reserved for 'the churchwardens and their successors forever’. Churchwardens oversaw the introduction of pews to the church nave in 1707, heating stoves in 1816 and many other changes up to the present day.
The current practice of appointing 4 churchwardens dates from at least the mid-18th century. Now two women and two men are elected on a 4 year cycle so there is election of one new and three existing churchwardens at the Annual Church Meeting each spring, and each churchwarden serves for a maximum of four years.
Although the responsibility of modern churchwardens includes an overview of church maintenance and finances the role is much wider than this. Appointed as representatives of the Bishop they have a duty to represent the laity and co-operate with the incumbent. They are expected to lead the parishioners by setting a good example and encouraging unity and peace, with a particular duty to 'maintain order and peace in the church and churchyard at all times'.
(An in depth history of St Peter’s Church with many references to the churchwardens is contained in the book “St Peter’s Prestbury – A personal response” by GB Hindle, available from the Parish Office)
Sheila Andrews: Appointed 2015
(No photo or synopsis available)
With my father and his two brothers all ordained priests, I was born in Shropshire into a thoroughly clerical family but trained as a Chartered Surveyor, working for over 40 years in various local authority, private sector and industry roles and, over the past 4 years, as a consultant.
In 2012, I moved to within about 5 metres of the Parish boundary with my wife Tracy and son Alex, now 7. With two adult sons and now three grandsons, I am a full time dad and grandad.
I was very surprised and honoured to be asked to take on wardenship at St Peter's – it is a great privilege to be asked to serve and one which I relish and am enjoying
Joyce Lord: Appointed 2017
I was born in Chadderton, Greater Manchester the youngest of three sisters, all former Rose Queens!! Thus I was introduced to church life (at Christ Church in Chadderton) from birth, by my loving Christian family. I am married to Reg, who is a School Governor and sides person. We have been blessed with two sons and four grandchildren.
I worked for almost 30 years as a College Lecturer at The Manchester College teaching children / adults with learning difficulties. In 2000 I was appointed a Magistrate to the Oldham Bench, latterly transferring to the Manchester Bench on our move to Cheshire.
I have always been involved in church life: serving on various committees, also taking on roles such as Guide / Cub & Scout Leader, Sunday School Teacher and Play Group Leader.
On Reg’s retirement God’s calling became clear and brought us here to Cheshire and St Peter’s to worship.
I am delighted to have been invited to serve as Church Warden within our new family. It has been a privilege to take on the duties and responsibilities attached to the role - especially working alongside the Ministry Team and other Church Wardens.