What’s on in the Ross Parishes 

Ross Parishes continues to foster a sense of community and spiritual nourishment with a diverse range of events and activities scheduled for the upcoming week. From virtual prayers to physical gatherings, there’s something for everyone seeking solace and connection.

On Wednesday, March 27:

10am-11:30am: Kickstart your day with Toast & Toddle at St. Mary’s—an opportunity for parents and toddlers to come together for a morning of fun and companionship.

11am until 12:30pm: Engage in craft at St Mary’s church.

8pm-9pm: Is compline, also at St Mary’s.

On Maundy Thursday:

10:00am: Attend the Eucharist at Markye Chapel, St. Mary’s, to partake in a solemn communion.

11:45am: Connect with the St. Mary’s Thursday Prayer group via Zoom. Visit rossparishes.uk/worship/prayer for participation details.

2:30pm: Messy Church is taking place at St Mary’s. 

7:30pm: The Eucharist of the Last Supper will be held at St Mary’s. 

On Good Friday:

12pm until 3pm: The Vigil at the Cross will be on at St Mary’s.

Holy Saturday:

Between 3pm and 4pm: The Contemplative Prayer will be held for Holy Saturday, also at St Mary’s.

Easter Sunday: 

6am: The Ecumenical Sunrise Service at St Mary’s.

8am: The Holy Communion, also at St Mary’s.

At 9:30am is the Sung Eucharist at St Mary’s which will also be live streamed.

9:30 at St Michaels, Walford: The Parish Eucharist

On Monday, April 1:

12pm-1pm: The Prayers for St Mary’s.

Tuesday, April 2:

9:00-11:00am: The Indulge in Tea & Toast and browse the Community Larder at St. Mary’s Hall—a welcoming space for nourishment and fellowship.

Ross Parishes invites all members of the community to partake in these enriching experiences, fostering connections and nurturing the spirit. Join in, and be uplifted by the collective embrace of faith and fellowship. For more information, go to the website: https://rossparishes.uk/

Ross Cancer Support Group monthly meeting 

The Ross Cancer Support Group will be holding their monthly meeting on Tuesday, April 9.

This date was chosen to avoid clashing with the Easter Bank Holiday weekend and will be held between 6pm and 8pm at St Mary’s Church Hall.

Mary Simpson from Healthwatch Herefordshire, who is undertaking another Community Led Engagement and Research Project, will be joining the meeting.

This event is pen to anyone who has been affected by cancer, or their carers, or friends. It is a place for an informal chat over a cuppa with others who has experienced the same. They are able to share experiences and signpost if appropriate to the various support organisations that are out there to provide professional help.

For more information on the Ross Cancer Support Group, contact 07501 211779 or email [email protected]. Or stay up to date with their meetings through the Ross Cancer Support Group Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/Rosscancersupport.uk/.

Film Festival attended by more than 21,000 people

More than 21,000 people attended the 22nd edition of the Borderlines Film Festival which closed on Sunday, March 24.

The festival took pace over 17 days across 23 venues in Herefordshire, Shropshire, Malvern, and the Marches.

Having 21,426 attendees over the course of the festival was an extraordinary achievement for this involved in the rural event. 

Staff and board members have been overwhelmed with delighted feedback from festival goers, some of whom travel year on year from locations as far as Bedfordshire, Buckinghamshire, Hampshire, Dorset and Oxfordshire to watch a selection of films. 

Many of the films were available to see at Borderlines well before an official UK release date. 

One attendee, Judy Bailey, commented on Facebook: “Great festival, so may wonderful films and such lovely volunteers. I Have had a great fortnight and heading off to the optician to remedy square eyes!”

And Keith Ansell commented: “Bloody love Borderlines Film Festival. Thank you to everyone in the team. Already looking forward to next year’s festival.” 

Another pleasing element of this year’s film festival was the participation of so many young people. The Courtyard Cinema’s Young Programming team hosted a preview screening of the documentary ‘Orlando, My Political Biography’, a riff on transgender identification based on the novel by Virginia Woolf. The Young Programmers set up a discussion panel nofollow the film, while BA (Hons) Illustration students from Hereford College of Arts produced a zine inspired by the themes of the film. 

Borderlines Film Festival
(Borderlines Film Festival)

A collaboration with Creative Pathways in the Shire, a scheme run by Ledbury Poetry, provided the opportunity for 16–30 year-olds to review and publish films showing at the festival. Sasha Edmunds, who chose to review the documentary Scala!!!, was thrilled to meet and chat to Ali Catterall, one of the filmmakers, after the screening. The film reviews are published online at https://www.the-shire.co.uk/youngreviewers/.

Several of the Young Reviewers also opted to volunteer for shifts on the Festival Desks at The Courtyard in Hereford and at Malvern Theatres. HCA Foundation Student Joseph McIlroy, who wrote about The Zone of Interest and Showing Up, found reviewing "challenging because it's quite a short deadline" but relished the time restriction because it made him get on and do it. "A lot of my mates obviously love watching films, but they don't get down the cinema enough. It's a much more exciting experience."

He enjoyed being on the Festival Desk. "It’s been great I've met lots of different people, people involved in the film industry and stuff. And it's nice to just chat about what people thought about the films. It's just good experience."

Others, like filmmaker Tom Booth, responded to a pre-festival call out for volunteers: "I came to Borderlines as a teenager quite a long time ago and got a lot from it, saw some really amazing films, types of films I hadn't seen anywhere else up until that point. And it’s one of the things that got me hooked onto films, an appreciation of what can be done with cinema.

"Then I went away to film school and trained there, and then been making documentary style promotional material as a job for about 10 years. And I recently moved back to Hereford, and I thought it would be a good option to be there for the whole of the festival, to volunteer and see if there's any people who are similar to me who like filmmaking. And also it's a good excuse to chat about films.

"There's a really, really wide range of films and that encourages a wider range of debate around film, I guess. So you're going to have films that some people don't like, and you're going to have films people really, really like and you're going have films that are going to split the room a little bit. I think that's really important.”

Support from the BFI, awarding funds from the National Lottery, and additional funders such as the Elmley Foundation and Hereford City Council, together with sponsorship by local businesses, groups of friends and individuals make this hugely successful film festival possible.

JKHS geology students explore Pembrokeshire for field course

Year 12 John Kyle high School Geology students took a trip to Pembrokeshire last week for a residential field course. 

The object for the week was for two of the teachers to introduce the students to field geology techniques and to observe and describe rock structures and features whilst gaining an appreciation of the full scale of geological processes. 

The group stayed at FSC Dale fort, an impressive Victorian fortress perched high on the cliff tops overlooking the entrance of Milford Haven. 

They shared their stay with other geographers from another Oxfordshire based school and another Bath Spa University environmental science undergraduates. 

Each day began at 8am for breakfast, followed by a short classroom session and then off into the field for the day, whatever the weather, returning at 6pm for dinner. Between 7pm and 9pm the students would then reflect on the experiences of the day and analyse data gathered or carefully describe rocks and fossils found throughout that day in another classroom session. 

Geology field trip
(John Kyrle High School)

The group visited famous geological locations at Stackpole, St Annes Head, St Davids, Whitesands, Fishguard, Abereiddy, Broadhaven, Druidston Haven, Poppit sands and the Preseli Hills. 

In the John Kyrle High School news letter last week, Head of Science, Mr Smith, said: “We were incredibly fortunate to be granted access and a tour by the Site Geologist at Bolton Hill Quarry near Haverfordwest on our last day. 

“Students got to see the reality of commercial operations, big diggers and serous safety measures. 

“Our host, Mike Griffiths also took A level Geology at school and did his Geology degree at Cardiff before joining the industry at Bolton Hill. He was an excellent and enthusiastic example for our students, enabling them to learn about the exciting possibilities a career as a Geologist can have. 

“The students behaved impeccably, were always on time, never complained about the rain, worked hard and learned a lot.”