(Church of England)
We are seeking, under God, to continue the development of this Church as a lively, culturally relevant, and Christ centred people, worshipping and serving in Bathampton and throughout the World.
The focal point of St Nicholas’ Church is not an altar, pulpit, or font. Nor is it the vicar, preacher or congregation. The focal point is totally invisible yet more real to church members than the walls or windows of the building.
Our focal point is the living reality of Jesus Christ. He is the reason we meet together; he is the reason the building is here; he gives purpose to our lives and through his Holy Spirit the power to cope with the problems, pain and difficulties that everyone has to face at some time.
As a church we believe Jesus is the way, the truth, and the life; that he is the one true light of the world, and that in him we too have the light of life.
The Church Building
The building is of Norman foundation and there has been a place of Christian Worship here for over seven hundred and fifty years. There are signs of Norman work in the Chancel and the Tower is in part prior to the seventeenth century. (In 1348, during the Black Death, there were four incumbents in the space of a few months!)
The present fabric began in the eighteenth century with the arrival of Ralph Allen who acquired Bathampton Manor by marriage in 1731 and largely rebuilt the church in about 1750. Ralph Allen is famous in the area for developing national postal services, and he is buried in Claverton Churchyard.
The Allen reconstruction of the church remained unchanged for about 100 years, when in 1858 alterations were made. Other modifications were made in 1879, 1882, 1970, and 1979. Extensions of the premises, including the Miller Room were made in 1993.
Captain Arthur Phillip landed in Australia in January 1788 at a site he named as Sydney in honour of Lord Sydney, and he was officially appointed Governor-in-Chief of New South Wales on 7 February 1788. When he retired he lived in Bathampton and Bath where he died in 1814. It was not until the year 1897 that any real interest in his achievement started, and the discovery of his grave in the church led to a more worthy memorial. In 1974 the Australia Chapel was constructed with donations from the Federal and State Governments of Australia, organisations and individuals. The floor is of Australian Wombeyan Marble and the memorial screen made of Australian Blackbean wood. The windows of the sanctuary carry the coat of arms of the Federal Government and the six Australian States. The Kneelers were given by Tasmania. In recent years, the High Commissioner for Australia performs an annual wreath laying ceremony on or about 11 October, the date of Arthur Phillip’s birth.
A booklet giving a fuller description of the history of this church can be obtained from the church bookstall.
8.00am Holy Communion (said)
10.30am A Service for all the family – Holy Communion, or Morning Prayer. All Age Worship (1st Sunday of month).
11.30am (1st Sunday of month only) Holy Communion.
6.00pm Holy Communion or Evening Prayer
Mon, Tues, Wed, and Friday
9.00am Morning Prayer
Monday Australia Chapel
7.30pm Prayer Meeting
9.30am Holy Communion (said)
This ladies meeting takes place on the second or third Thursday of each month, and meets for discussion,
to hear speakers, and have social activities.
Christianity Explored & Discipleship Explored
Christianity Explored is for those willing to consider the facts of Christianity and to make up their own minds in an informal way, and for those who would like a refresher of the fundamentals of the Christian faith. Discipleship explored is for Christians who wish to grow in their spiritual lives and be effective disciples.
A group who design and make our wall hangings.
A team of bell ringers practice on Monday evenings and announce morning worship on Sundays.
For special events, such as the Harvest Supper”, the ‘Friends of St Nicholas’ committee arrange the catering.
Children and Youth
Children meet on Sunday mornings, leaving for their own activities part way through the 10.30am Service. The groups are: Crèche (0-3); Climbers (4-6); Explorers (7-11); and Pathfinders (11-16).
Arrangements of flowers in church assist in our worship.
A lunch club for Bathampton residents held on the last Thursday of each month.
This informal group meets for discussion in a home of one of its members on the second Monday of each month at 7.30pm.
Parents & Toddlers meet at 9.00-11.00am on Wednesdays in term time.
The Church seeks to reach out to our neighbours and friends in Bathampton with the good news of Jesus Christ.
The church also supports missionaries, who serve in the Sudan and NW Uganda with the Church Mission Society.
Once a month our cash offerings are sent to mission organisations.
Steps in Faith
As a means of having fellowship and looking at what God has to say to us through his word, “Steps in Faith” discussion groups are held in the homes of members, or church rooms, twice a month.
Youth Club’ ‘Two Youth Clubs for different age groups meet on Wednesday and Thursday evenings.