Houghton - Down Your Way

Evan Usher with his trophies.
Evan Usher with his trophies.
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After a winter break, St Michael and All Angels’ Parish Church has re-opened, Mondays to Saturdays from 11am-1pm, for free public viewing of the historic building, including the tomb of the legendary Rector Bernard Gilpin, the huge sculpture of the risen Christ carved from a single tree, and the ancient foundations going back to Roman times, viewed through a glass panel in the floor. There will be a coffee morning in aid of church funds from 10am-11am on Saturday with homemade cakes and savouries, and a tombola stall.

The AGM of the Parochial Church Council will be held at 11.15am on Sunday, after the morning service, and all parishioners on the electoral roll are urged to attend for the conduct of the business and the election of church officers.

Six-year-old Evan Usher is a rising karate star who has collected a haul of trophies recently. The biggest one being the Peter McGarity Trophy, one of the biggest you can win in the North East. He trains with Paul Gray at Dubmire British Legion, Britannia Terrace. Classes are held on Mondays and Thursdays from 6.30pm-7.30pm. For more information about the club, ring 07842 436675 or pop in.

A new connection has been forged between two North East bands – national champions Houghton Brass and the excellent Westoe Band. James Wright, who is a euphonium soloist for Houghton Brass, and Jo Brown, flugel player for the Westoe Band, were married on April 1 in St Michael’s Church, Easington Lane. Best wishes are expressed by their colleagues and supporters for happy future harmony.

Popular singer Sandra Atherton will provide the entertainment for Houghton Older People’s Enterprise in the Methodist Church Hall at 1pm on Thursday.

The next walks by the Sunderland Group of the Ramblers’ Association are: Sunday, Crook, meeting in the town centre car park at 10.30am with leader Dennis Borley, phone 492 0029 for details. April 13, Bollihope, meeting in the car park south west of Frosterley at 10.30am with leader Gordon Lindsley, phone 520 2152.

The next meeting of the members of The Friends of Rectory Park will be in the Community Room of St Michael’s Kepier Hall at 7pm on Tuesday, April 12.

Speaker at Houghton Methodist Women’s Fellowship was local preacher John Rountree about his first five years as a mining apprentice in the distant past without the facilities of today.

The Rotary Club quiz team comprising Ashley Burland, Bob Hodgson, Godfrey Young and Ron Young won the zone final in the North East District 1030 competition by beating Sedgefield Rotary Club 38 points to 31 away at the Hardwick Arms Hotel in Sedgefield and will now move on to the district semi-finals and final night against the other three zone winners at a date and venue to be confirmed.

The speaker at Sunniside Methodist Men’s Fellowship was Peter Walsham with an illustrated talk about a holiday spent with his wife in Pulun, Mexico.