St.Osyth: St.Peter & St.Paul

Our future, our strengths and the challenges ahead.

We have laid out our hopes and direction for the mission and ministry of our Grade 1 listed Church, in order that potential candidates can see what the challenges and opportunities of our Parish are and the skills and talents that we are seeking.

What kind of Church do we want to be?

We want our Church to continue to be a friendly, welcoming and open Church at the centre of the community with Christianity at its heart, reaching out to people of all ages and backgrounds whilst moving with the times and encompassing different modes of worship without losing all our traditions.

Our Church is open daily from 8am-3pm

What we have to offer:

  • people who quietly go about using their talents for the benefit of the Church and the wider community.
  • our friendliness and ‘open door’ policy, enabling the community and visitors alike to enjoy the peace and serenity of our beautiful Church every day.
  • a willingness to explore other types of services with the new incumbent.
  • our strong and committed Warden, Deputy Wardens, PCC Members and members of the Church Family, who willingly give their time and talents to make so many things possible.
  • our positive and happy relationship with St Osyth Church of England Primary School.
  • the sound fabric of the Church building enhanced by the support and dedication of both the Church family and local people.
  • St Osyth Life, our popular Church magazine which was a Winner of the Pride of Tendring Awards in 2023.
  • our active support with the community of the Trussell Trust Food Bank run by the Salvation Army.
  • the finances of the Church which are on a sound footing.

 The People Who Serve the Church and its Community

  • we are an incredibly fortunate Church as we have very many people, who give of their time and talents to share in the load of tasks, which are central to the life and Worship of our Church, its fabric and Churchyard; it is truly impressive.
  • we employ key people whose role, albeit part – time, is to reduce the workload of the Priest. We have an Administrator, a Wedding Co-ordinator, a Christening Co-ordinator, a Verger for Funerals and a P.C.C. Secretary. The Church Warden, three Deputy Wardens together with a significant number of laity are active as readers, intercessors and welcomers as well as those who administer the Chalice.
  • we have an enthusiastic choir, an organist and a talented group of bell ringers all of whom enhance our worship.
  • there are few people, who attend our Church, if any, who do not contribute in some way to its life and worship.

What We Do: in the Church and with the Community

Saturday Morning Coffee Pop-In

Held every Saturday morning between 10.00a.m. and 11.30a.m.  A well-attended community event.

Refreshments after the 11.00a.m. Sunday Service

A chance for fellowship, coffee and cake.

Harvest Lunch

In September 2023, we held another successful Harvest Lunch after the Harvest Festival Service.  54 members of the congregation attended this enjoyable event. Part of the proceeds was donated to a local charity – Sailship Training and Learning for Life.

Remembrance Sunday

We hold a Remembrance Service every year, where we are joined by the village uniformed organisations, St.Osyth Royal British Legion, St.Osyth Primary School, and local businesses. After the service, the Wreaths are placed on the War Memorials in the Churchyard and Cowley Park.

Enjoying Harvest Lunch together - September 2023
Palm Sunday-the donkey, enjoying carrots and attention having walked the 'Walk of Witness' accompanied by the choir and members of the congregation 2023.

Palm Sunday

Every Palm Sunday, as part of the service, a Walk of Witness, led by a Donkey is walked with the choir and members of the community from the Village Hall to the Church.

Weekly Pew Sheet and Notices

This is produced every week and emailed to 108 members of the Church and the community, copies are also available in Church. It contains all the Service details, notices and events for the following week.

Alms House Trust and St Osyth Social Club

Members of the PCC act as Trustees for these organisations and meetings are held four times a year.

Summer and Christmas Fayres

Two major events in our Church calendar, which are very well supported by the local community and further afield. They are great fund raisers for our Church.

Christmas Angels

For the past eight years, each Christmas everyone in our local community is given the opportunity to remember loved ones by writing a personalised message on an ‘Angel’, which is then placed on the branches of our Christmas Lights tree in the Churchyard. This act of kindness, undertaken by volunteers means a very great deal to many people.

The Summer Fayre held annually in the Churchyard, much enjoyed by the Community.

Lunch time Recitals

During the summer of 2023, we held three Lunchtime Recitals with refreshments.  They were well attended and raised important funds for the Organ Repair and Music Fund.  These Recitals will take place again during the summer of 2024.

Emergency and Disaster Appeals

We always support Appeals and arrange additional collections.

Trussell Trust/Salvation Army Foodbank

The Church acts as the main collection point for food donations from the local community. In 2022 at the Village Carol Service with the Salvation Army Band, over 444 kg of food was donated and £1,075.00 was given in donations. At Harvest Festival, 200kg of food was donated by Church members, the children from the Primary School and the local community.

The Warm Hub

During the winter months of Jan, Feb, March 2022, members of the Church and the local community manned a hub in ‘The Hoy’ public house providing warmth and meals to all those that needed them. It was made possible by a very generous donation by a resident.


Disclosure Barring System checks and relevant safeguarding training have been completed by all members of the PCC and other responsible people.

St.Osyth Facts and Figures

The population of our thriving village is 5200. We have a range of local shops and businesses including a chemist, butcher, hairdressers, barbers, Nisa and Premier Stores, a Post Office, pubs, eateries and take away outlets.

We are fortunate to have around 40 different clubs/societies/organisations which are well supported in the village.

Regular bus services are available to Clacton and Colchester.

Worship Services

This information concerning our regular services is also given on the Benefice spreadsheet.


8am ~ 1st Sunday ~ 1662 Communion

10am ~ 1st Sunday ~ Joint Benefice Sung Communion Service with St Marys, Gt. Bentley

(Alternating between our two Churches)

11am ~ 2nd & 4th Sundays ~ Parish Communion

11am ~ 3rd Sunday (& when there is a 5th Sunday) ~ Sung Communion

Taizé Service Quarterly


10am Holy Communion

Village Carol Service - over 200 members of the Community singing carols with the Salvation Army Band, December 2023.

Baptisms and Weddings

The Church has for a long time had an open policy towards baptisms/thanksgiving for a child, and marriages both within and beyond the parish boundary. Marriages of divorced people have taken place.


N.B. The Churchyard is ‘closed’; the cemetery is on the outskirts of the village and Weeley Crematorium is a short drive away.

During the period of absence, due to the ill health of our incumbent, we have continued to observe Ash Wednesday, Maundy Thursday, Compline, Good Friday and All Souls services. We hold a Taize service at regular intervals.

The Church has other special services, among them are:

  • Remembrance Day – this Service begins in the Church followed by the laying of wreaths at the two memorials, one at the Church and then we process to the memorial in Cowley Park, a short walk away.
  • St.Osyth Day (7th October) which is held in the Priory Chapel with the kind permission of the owners.
  • An All-Souls Day service is held in the Church at the end of October when the names of the departed are read out and candles lit.
  • The Village Carol Service with the Salvation Army Band.

      Looking to the future it is very much hoped that we can continue to have a regular Sunday Service in our Church. On the Sundays when this may not be possible the P.C.C, with agreement of the incumbent, will try to ensure that a licensed Priest or Lay Minister is available to lead the service.

      Again, if possible, we would like to continue to celebrate the 8am Communion Service held on the first Sunday of the month and the weekly Thursday 10am Communion Service.

      Church of England Primary School

      The catchment area for the school mirrors our Parish boundary. The school is part of the Vine Trust and is rated as “good” by both the Trust and Ofsted (June 2023). The role number is 298.We have an excellent relationship with the School’s Headteacher, Mark Carter-Tufnell and his staff and the children enjoyed having the Vicar leading them in worship once a week. Major festival worship services are held in the Church.

      Mr. Carter-Tufnell fully supports the weekly lunch time 3 G’s Club, “God’s Good Guy”s, which has run since 2017 as part of our Outreach. It is well attended with 12-15 children, regularly willing to give up their lunch time play. From time-to-time 3G’s bring their lunch into the Church where they love to explore the building and have fun.

      Key Stage 1 children rehearsing for their Carol Service in Church, December 2023.

      Sunday Club

      Prior to 2020 the Club was well attended, meeting every Sunday. However, since the end of the pandemic the numbers have fallen. We now have one leader and the Club is available on the second and fourth Sundays.

       Charitable Giving 2022

      Ukrainian Appeal                    £1,180 

      Royal British Legion                  £275

      Church Urban Fund                   £115

      Salvation Army                          £1,075

      Total                                                £2,645

       Bible Reading Group/Course

      The Bible Reading Group meets regularly. We need to explore other ways of engaging people in Bible study. At certain times of the year, e.g. Lent, Advent, pamphlets & books are made available to those of our congregation who may not be able to attend some or all of the Reading Group sessions.

      St Osyth Life Magazine

      First produced in 1883, a single sheet of paper folded to make four pages by the then Vicar Rev. Henry Chapman, priced at 1 penny! Now delivered free to 2400 houses in the Parish of St.Osyth. Totally dependent on the advertising to fund its production and organised by a team of volunteers and the 70 plus people who deliver it. An excellent and much appreciated magazine.

      Website (

      The Church has had a website for several years now. In 2018 it was redesigned by a local business, Naglotech. It is maintained by Naglotech and updated regularly by our own webmaster.

      The website provides an easy route for parishioners, new residents and visitors to find out about our church, its contacts and its life week by week. During Lockdown the site spiritually led prayers, streamed services and provided up to date relevant notices.

      The Future

      The Church and the community recognise that there are challenges ahead as we move from a Benefice of two churches to four, but we know that there are opportunities too.

      We look forward to sharing both with the new incumbent and moving forward positively for the benefit of all.

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