20 October 2017
Thirty Readers from our diocese recently spent their autumn weekend retreat at Willersley Castle, near Matlock in Derbyshire. John Marshall (Chair of Lincoln Readers) has kindly supplied the following account of the retreat and the accompanying photographs...
The castle was built for mill owner Sir Richard Arkwright, who unfortunately died before he could occupy it. The castle nestles in the rocks above the River Derwent in a beautiful setting.
The theme of our weekend, which was led by Sally Buck (Diocesan Warden of Readers), was most appropriate: ‘For the beauty of the Earth’. In between sessions reflecting on the lines of the well-known hymn, we took time to explore the castle grounds, to walk along the Cromford Canal, go for a swim, or just relax.
On the Sunday morning, we walked down the drive to St Mary’s Church in Cromford, where a Derby Reader, Bernice Smith, preached the sermon and where we also found a warm welcome.
Willersley was a first visit for Lincoln Readers but we hope to return in 2020. The castle, which is a Christian Guild hotel, offered us accommodation, food and service of a high standard, making this an excellent venue with good facilities for a church retreat or conference.
Further information on Reader ministry is available from the Lincoln Readers website.
A report on the recent Lincoln Readers’ Annual Service and Licensing of new Readers in Lincoln Cathedral may be found here.
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