Why not celebrate Queen Elizabeth’s 90th birthday by running an event with the local community during National Cherishing Churchyard Week, 4th June to 12th June? Every parish church is being encouraged by the Church of England to organise an activity to mark the Queen’s official birthday on the weekend on 10th -12th June.
Caring for God’s Acre, the charity for the conservation of burial sites promotes National Cherishing Churchyards Week by helping people to organise special activities. This year it coincides with the Queen’s official birthday presenting an opportunity to celebrate both together in one event.
A rich diversity of plant and animal life can be discovered in burial sites and they often contain ancient meadowland and distinctive and veteran trees such as Yew trees, the oldest living things in Britain. The stonework of the memorials and boundary walls provides a home for a mosaic of mosses, ferns and lichens. Burial sites are also important places for archaeology and history, providing an accessible resource for community learning. Most important of all - they provide a tranquil place for remembrance and quiet reflection.
Events offered during Cherishing Churchyards Week could include activities for families such asa quiz, a mini beast safari, tree bingo, letter or leaf rubbing, making gargoyles out of clay. Open days with guided tours are popular. Volunteer activity days such as making compost areas, scything or raking grass, memorial recording, bramble clearing, nest box making could be organised. Special workshops indry stone walling, memorial recording, plant identification, geology, tree care or creative writing and art are also ideas for activities.
‘We would love people to celebrate the Queen’s birthday with activities during Cherishing Churchyards Week’ said Andrea Gilpin, Cherishing Churchyards Week Coordinator.
‘There’s no better way of involving people, young and old, than through events with a difference’, added Andrea.
Cherishing Churchyards Week is supported by CfGA’s Heritage Lottery (HLF) funded National Project, which is working across England and Wales running conferences and training events in fifteen different regions.
For further information on Cherishing Churchyards Week or the work of the charity, Caring for God’s Acre, take a look at www.caringforgodsacre.org.uk or phone 01588 673041 for information via the post.