St. James’ Church News

Letter from Rev. Stephen Wookey

Dear friends

Forgive another letter but it has been another extraordinary day, and we feel it is important to keep everyone as up to date as possible. The Archbishops of York and Canterbury published some advice earlier today, and the Diocese of Gloucester has written since to ensure we are clear as to the next steps. This is in essence what we have been told, with some comments of my own on how we are dealing with it here [my words in the square brackets].

Public worship will have to stop with immediate effect. Our usual pattern of Sunday services and other mid-week gatherings must be put on hold. [What we are planning instead is to live stream both morning services on a Sunday either through Facebook and / or YouTube. We will let you know later this week how to find it, but it should be on the front page of our website.]

Weddings and baptisms can take place, provided you follow all the national guidance and hygiene measures. BUT they can only be attended by a small number of people, who must be able to follow physical distancing guidelines. People need to remain two metres apart from each other [I presume the bride and groom are excepted! We have let the various couples who are getting married in April know, and will contact the others shortly]

Wedding banns: banns cannot currently be read, as there is no principle service. Details from the registry will be on the diocesan website by Friday.

Funerals: at present the same guidance as with weddings and baptisms applies to funerals. We expect further guidance on this over the next couple of days.

Non-essential face to face pastoral visits should be changed to conversations over the phone/Skype etc. [We hope to be able to pray with people over the phone.]

All non-essential meetings, committees and boards should be cancelled. That includes PCCs, Chapters and Synods. The Diocese will share further guidance around how good governance is continued during the coming weeks.

APCMs advice will be coming out in the next few days. We expect these to be postponed, but we will keep you updated.

Home groups etc: should not meet physically but could be done in a different way, using Facebook or Zoom etc. [This relates to our home groups, Mums and Tots, Christianity Explored, prayer meetings, Men’s group, Women’s Bible Studies etc.]

Whilst no public services will happen this Mothering Sunday (22 March), we ask that you join in with the Archbishops’ National Day of Prayer. And remember we are encouraging everyone to join us in prayer – spiritually not physically – every evening at 9 pm. I am sorry this is so draconian but we all understand the reasons why. My prayer is that rather than our being divided by our not meeting together, we will actually find we draw closer as we pray, share over the phone, by text, Skype or email, and it will give us a wonderful opportunity to share the gospel with others.

With my very best wishes in our Lord Jesus Christ


Does your neighbour need your help?

It’s is important that we do all we can to help those in our community that are likely to become more isolated as measures are put in place to delay the spread of Covid-19. There are some simple but effective things we can all do to help:

  • Making sure they have enough food and other general supplies to cover a few days – there is no need to panic buy though
  • Walking their dog, picking up a prescription, putting out their bins or taking in a parcel
  • Phoning, Skyping of Facetime them so they can see a friendly face, helping to reduce their isolation
  • Sharing childcare or other caring responsibilities
  • Checking if any of their planned appointments have been cancelled before they travel
  • Making sure they have some simple recipes to hand, if they are not the normal chef or have done some batch cooking for the freezer

Longborough Village Spring Clean

We are inviting anyone who is fit and healthy to join us in this year’s village spring clean from 10.30am-12.30pm on Saturday 28th March.  Our aim is to collect litter and any other debris on the main routes through the village.

As well as helping keep our village tidy, it provides an opportunity for some fresh air and exercise whilst staying within the current guidelines on social distancing. (Click here if you’re interested in reading those guidelines).  If you would like to help keep your village tidy, please meet at the bus shelter on High Street, just outside the school at 10.30am.

All equipment will be provided but please do wear suitable clothing/footwear.  If you have any questions, please email us at

Coronavirus Information

In an attempt to provide all our residents, guests and visitors with access to the latest updates on coronavirus, we have added an entry on the home page menu titled “Coronavirus (COVID-19) Information“.  There you will find links to the most up-to-date information from both the UK Government as well as the National Health Service.

In these challenging times, let’s all continue to consider those around us who may be more vulnerable than ourselves and help them where we can.

Thank you.



Longborough and the Domesday book

Written in Medieval Latin, the Domesday book was a survey of which the main purpose was to determine what taxes had been owed during the reign of King Edward the Confessor, thereby allowing William the Conqueror to reassert the rights of the Crown and assess where power lay after a wholesale redistribution of land following the Norman conquest.

On page 470 of the book can be found the entry concerning Longborough.  (See photo above).

The literal translation of Paragraph LXIX reads as follows:

LXIX The land of Humphrey the Chamberlain.  In ‘Witley’ Hundred.  Humphrey the chamberlain holds of the king – Longborough.

There are 4 hides paying geld. Alston and Blaecmann and Eadricand Alaric held it as 4 manors and could go there whenever they wished. In demesne  were 4 ploughs and 3 villans and 5 bordars.  There are 9 slaves. It was worth £16 now 100s

Paragraph LXX concerns Sezincote and it reads as follows:

The same Humphrey holds 1 hide in Sezincote. Alwig held it as a manor. In demesne were 2 ploughs and 6 slaves and 1 bordar. It was worth 50s: now only 12d because of the meadows

  • Demesne – area of land attached to a manor for ploughing etc. Hides were areas of land paying geld (tax)
  • Manor – estate or unit of lordship, varying in size. The Domesday survey was based on the manor and not the parish.
  • Villans are unfree peasants who owed his Lord labour of about two or three days a week.  Bordars are unfree peasants with less land than a villan
  • Plough – an area of land to be ploughed by a team of eight oxen
  • Note that the original Longborough is “Lingerberge” and Sezincote is “Cheisnecote”

With special thanks to Mike and Barbara Prior for supplying the photo and the translation.

New recycling service coming soon

From March 2020 Cotswold district Council (CDC) are improving our recycling collections so we can recycle additional items including textiles and shoes, small electricals, cartons and household batteries.  By now, you should  have received a new cardboard bag give you more capacity and a new bin for food waste. One key change is that you will no longer be able to put food waste in your garden waste bin (if you subscribe to that service).

Food waste must be kept separate and put in your new outdoor food waste bin, which will be collected each week.  Refuse and recycling collections will remain fortnightly nut garden waste collections will now also switch to be fortnightly.

And finally, don’t forget that collection dates are changing for some residents.  If you need any further information, then click here to find out more.

Gigaclear in Longborough


Gigaclear are working in partnership with Gloucestershire County Council to provide ultrafast full fibre broadband to homes and businesses as part of the “Fastershire” programme of works and it’s Longborough’s turn to get digitised!

The Fastershire project invests public funding in areas that are not commercially viable; this is where there are no suppliers of Next Generation Access broadband (minimum of 30Mbps) currently available.

Find out more here