Salvation Army

Church and Community Centre

News Items for the Year 2012

Click on the pictures to reveal a slide show.

Wednesday 19th December
The Singing Company At Home

The Singing Company invited us to an ‘At Home’, where they sang carols to a large congregation.

      Slide Show     Panoramic View

Wednesday 12th December
The Singing Company sing carols at East Riding Care Home

Wednesday evening was a busy night for our Singing Company. They called at three Residential Care Homes singing a lovely programme of carols at each. At East Riding, where one of our soldiers has been a resident for some months, about twenty five residents and staff had been eagerly waiting for their arrival. They were nt disappointed as they listened to and joined in some of their favourites.

Sunday 2nd December
Toddlers Carol Service - The Stinky Stable

The hall was packed for this year’s Toddlers Carol Service. During the time spent in getting all the children dressed up a small ensemble from the band played suitable Christmas melodies. (Who needs a big band!!) About 40 toddlers under the age of three, all dressed in colourful costumes, many hand made by families, simulated the journey to Bethlehem by marching round the hall singing appropriate chants. There were shepherds, wise men, kings, all sorts of animals, and of course Mary, Joseph and baby Jesus. Lots of excitement and very few tears.

Friday 30th November
A Caribbean Evening

Stepping out of the cold winter Bedlington air into a lovely warm building decked out as a Caribbean beech scene was a pleasant surprise. There were sun umbrellas, Coconut Shies, fruit juice stalls, fruit kebab stalls, plenty to eat and even a sandy beech for the little ones to play in. Some of those gathered were invited to limbo dance. Some proved very able, whilst others struggled a bit. However, great fun was had. Above all there was a Caribbean steel drum band from the KEVI School in Morpeth. The building was bursting at the seams and a great evening was enjoyed. The musicians from the school displayed a wonderful mix of traditional Caribbean music but also demonstrated how the instruments are capable of playing sensitive classical pieces. There was fun as volunteers were invited to learn to play the drums. The evening was opened by Ian Lavery, Wansbeck’s MP, who spoke very highly of the influence of the Salvation Army in the local area and how he always enjoys visiting.

Sunday 24th November
Enrolment of Charlotte Arcle as a Soldier

Some years ago while the band was conducting its Sunday morning open air meeting two little girls asked their Mother if they could go out to listen to the band. Two chairs were brought out and these little girls were attracted by the invitation to attend The Salvation Army Sunday School. Not only did they continue to attend but they invited others to join them on Sundays. Now, several years later Charlotte has been enrolled as a Senior Soldier witnessed by proud parents and many family and friends. Mr Billy Ferry, Charlotte’s Great Uncle read some appropriate chosen verses of scripture. The ceremony was conducted by Major Peter Clark, during which the congregation was invited to repeat the Army’s Articles of Faith.
When invited to ‘Say a few words’ Charlotte gave a moving testimony to how her love for God had influenced her whole being. It has enabled her to witness to her friends why she did not wish to join them in their social pursuits and found her enjoyment serving God in The Salvation Army.

Saturday 23rd November
Christmas Market

This year the Christmas Bazaar took on a new dimension with a tremendous amount of organisation and planning. Great efforts were made to engage the whole community of Bedlington and this proved to be very successful. As the slide show below demonstrates there was plenty for all ages with roundabout rides, candy floss and roasted chestnuts on the car park, the band playing carols, stalls of various goods suitable for Christmas presents, tea, coffee soup, turkey baps, and of course Santa’s grotto. Altogether a very successful event and congratulation are due to the organisers and volunteers.

Sunday 28th October
Enrolment of Moira Underwood as a Soldier

Moira Mae first came to the Salvation Army, when she was 6 years old in her home town of Kirkwall, Orkney Islands. Her best friend came from an Army family and she went along with them. At 7 years old Moira Mae gave her life to Jesus and grew up in the corps at Kirkwall, joining the songsters, band and she became very active within it. At the age of 12 Moira Mae heard the call of Jesus., asking her to be a Salvation Army Officer, when she didnt even know what an officer was, but she heeded that call and recommitted herself to God, She left home at the age of 17 and moved to London to work for the Army in preparation for entry into the International Training College (as it was known in those days). She entered Training College in 1982 as a Servant of God and it was there that she met her husband, Maurice. Due to tragic family circumstances Maurice and Moira Mae had to leave training college whilst they were in their summer training. They settled down to life in Felton, Northumberland, where Maurice is from. This marked the beginning of an extended period when Moira Mae was away from the Army, they had a daughter Lillie Mae in 1991. But God did not give up on Moira and over that period of time a lot of people were praying for her, that she would return to God and the Army.
In February 2012 Moira Mae came to the corps at Bedlington. She was sure that nobody would speak to her so it would give her a good enough reason not to return, however, it seemed as though everybody in the hall that day spoke to her so Moira continued to attend. In June 2012 Moira Mae attended a Design for Living weekened held by the Candidates Department at the William Booth Training College. It was a weekend in which the delegates examined their life and asked God to give direction in their life, so that they could follow God's calling, whatever that may be. During this weekend God reinforced his original calling to become a Salvation Army Officer and Moira Mae felt that she had to obey that call. She returned from the weekend and spoke to Karen and Peter, the corps officers and then began the journey to becoming a soldier again. With the patient guidance of Olive Lightley and prayers of many, Moira Mae attended recruitment classes, to remind herself of the promises she had made God all those years ago and the Covenant she was going to make to him.
October 2012 saw the culmination of that time when Moira Mae was enrolled as a soldier of Bedlington Corps by Major Glad Ljungholm who she first met at her first assessment conference in 1981 and they entered training college together in 1982. During the meeting Glad read messages of encouragement from many people in all corners of the world, proving again, that God answers prayer. Moira Mae was joined on the night by her daughter, Lillie Mae, her husband Maurice, a life long friend from her home corps, Major Isobel Smith (neeStanger), Captain Caroline James, who Moira Mae worked with at a home for the elderly run by the Army in Tunbridge Wells and she hadnt seen since her Territorial farewell meeting in Glasgow in 1982. She was also joined by new Army friends from Ilford and Staines corps, Steve Burnett and Alan Patterson respectfully. The theme of the meeting was God is Able, based on Ephesians 3:14-21, the Message paraphrase. As Moira Mae knelt at the mercy seat to publlically sign the Articles of War and to rededicate and commit herself to God the congregation sang, 'At they feet I bow adoring' and 'Reckon on me following Thee'. Both these songs had special significance when Moira Mae was at Training College and it was fit and right that they be sung as Moira Mae remade that commitment to follow God in whatever path it is He has planned for her.

Saturday Morning 6th October
Special Coffee Morning in aid of ‘Fish & Chips Babies’.

In July this year the ladies of the corps started to knit jumpers and hats for babies in Malawi. Soon the word had spread how the babies, often born prematurely and with aids, were sent home wrapped in newspaper if nothing else was available, only to die of pneumonia in the cold of the night.

Word soon spread and others from the community in Bedlington, Ashington and Morpeth joined the knitting band. Eston Corps ladies heard about the project and they too started to knit.

The Coffee Morning was held in order to raise funds to help with the costs of sending the garments to Africa. A grand sum of £230 was raised at that event.

Dawn and George found the Raven Trust in Strachur in Scotland on the internet and went up to visit the Trustees to find out more about them and their work in Malawi.

In the last two weeks a consignment of over 1200 knitted items have been sent to Scotland ready for loading into a 40ft container which will go to Malawi in December. The ladies are concentrating on blanket squares to be made up into blankets 2ft 6ins by 4ft 6ins – these will be used for the mothers to carry the babies on their backs whilst working in the fields. Also knitted toys are being sent – the only toy that these children will ever have.

Many thanks to all who have and are continuing to knit for this project.

Thanks to Dawn Miller for this report.

Weekend 13/14th October
Harvest Weekend led by The Divisional Community Development Officer Capt. Howard Russell

The weekend commenced on the Saturday evening with a festival by the Divisional Youth Band and Chorus. These young people demonstrated great musical talent in very difficult pieces musically but also touched many hearts with the sincerity of their singing and playing of less challenging but very effective devotional pieces. These were backed up by personal testimony from Oliver Cook and Richard Wearmouth. Captain Howard Russell reflected on some words of scripture before the final items from the Band and Chorus, sending us home after enjoying a feast of good music and fellowship.


Sunday 30th September
Enrolment of Christina and dedication of her daughter Ninna

Christina Madsen came to England some eight years ago from Denmark where she had attended the Danish Free Church. She started coming to the corps at Bedington at the beginning of this year with her daughter Ninna-Louise at the invitation of her neighbour Dora Doyle, a soldier of the corps. Major Peter Clark enrolled Christina as an adherent and dedicated Ninna-Louise.

Two weeks in August
Summer Club

This year the Summer Club was run over two weeks and the children took part in many activities. On the Sunday following the end of the club many friends and relatives of the children attended the meetings.

27th July
Olympic Opening Ceremony

More than 600 people attended the Olympic Games Community Event, organised by Corps members and community volunteers. After six months planning the Olympic Opening Ceremony was broadcast at the free event, funded by West Bedlington Town Council and donations from local shops and businesses. A member of Parliament commended the corps work.

Activities included a crazy golf course, a skate park, a giant inflatable assault course and a penalty shoot out which resulted in very positive feedback.

Opening Ceremony 2012.wmv

Sunday 8th July
Band at East Riding Care Home

The band went to play at East Riding Care Home in the afternoon principally to give encouragement to one of the corps soldiers who was in temporary residence while her husband recovers from his poor health. Favourite marches and tunes were played but the favourite was the march ‘He Lives’. The Home manager said that she would like the band to be able to play every Sunday and for several days afterward residents and staff were talking about how they had enjoyed the afternoon.

Video                  Slide Show

15th June
Olympic Torch Procession

The rain came all day on the twenty eighth day of the relay as it made its way through Bedlington town centre.
It did not stop our parade; Bedlington band led the carnival and we had two emergency vehicles serving over 500 teas and coffees to people who watched. Over 1,500 Kids Alive were given to teachers watching the parade with their class children so continuing the torch experience when back at school. The Mums and Tots team kept many of the school children busy with crafts as they created torches. After many weeks preparation we would like to say thank you to bandsman Richard Wearmouth (Community Development Co-ordinator) for bringing together the community of Bedlington, a great day had by all.

Sunday 29th April 2012
Sudden Promotion To Glory of Bandmaster Ian Burn

It is with great sadness that we have to report that our beloved Bandmaster, Ian Burn, was suddenly taken during the Salvation meeting on Sunday. Having just conducted the Band for it’s contribution ‘Songs of The Pioneers’ he collapsed. Our thoughts and prayers go out to Isabell and the extended family.

The funeral service on Tuesday 8th May was attended by a packed congregation with an overflow where the service was relayed to an adjacent hall.

Jason, one of Ian’s three sons, gave a moving tribute using memories of times spent with his Mum and Dad. Those of us who had been close to Ian could not help but enjoy some humorous memories because Ian had a wicked sense of fun. Laughter accompanied one of Jason’s imaginative scenarios when Ian approached the pearly gates. Peter welcomed him by saying they had been expecting him and that there were many people inside who were looking forward to seeing him again. However, ‘Before you go in will you do my back?’ (Ian was a qualified Osteopath). Jason emphasised the great Christian gentleman that was Ian Burn. He emphasised how important his wife, Isabell, and his children and grandchildren were to him and how in recent weeks he had been able to share quality time with them all, whether in Norway, Texas or the UK.

The webmaster and his wife have very special memories of Ian. He will be sorely missed by many, but his legacy will live on. He will be remembered in Christian love by all who had the privilege of knowing him.

The slide show below is a collage of pictures which show how proud he was to wear the Salvation Army uniform and how he enjoyed fun situations.

Sunday 22nd April 2012
Sid Tweddle transferred to the Band Reserve

After over 61 years as a Salvation Army Bandsman Sid received his commission as a Band Reservist. Major Clark emphasised that this was not a retirement but a commission as a Band Reservist. During the meeting the Band played at Sid’s request the Festival March, ‘Praise’ and the Meditation, ‘The Light of the World’. At the conclusion of the meeting the band played the March ‘The Flag of Freedom’. Sid also chose several of the songs used in the meeting. We wish Sid God’s richest blessings and thank him for such wonderful service.

Saturday 21st April 2012
St George’s Day Celebrations

A good crowd gathered to celebrate St. George’s Day. With flags waving and in good voice a great time was had by all. There were games, quiz's, plenty of singing, and of course 'Rule Britannia' and ‘Jerusalem’ could not be left out. Of course this all went down with plenty of good food.

Easter Weekend 2012
A very full and blessed weekend

On Maundy Thursday we journeyed to the cross, this was led by Major Karen Clark. About 30 adults and 2 children met together in fellowship moving around the different rooms in the building as we reflected on Christ's journey leading up to His crucifixion.

Good Friday meetings were led by Commissioner Margaret Sutherland, who conducted the whole weekend’s meetings. this was followed by Easter open air meeting in Morpeth, beginning with a march of witness led by the band. They were supporting the churches together from Morpeth. It was a good witness and folk stopped what they were doing on the street to watch and listen.

On Easter Saturday a crowd of corps folk assembled at Alnmouth for a ramble organised by Sheila Pattison, it was about 4.5 miles and it was so beautiful, the weather was kind and the views were awesome. This was followed by a fellowship meal in Warkworth. Click on the picture to see a slide show from Ian Burn’s photos.

Easter Sunday began with a prayer breakfast hosted by Olive and Keith Lightley who led us in thought and prayers.

Commissioner Margaret Sutherland led the Sunday meetings again and gave us much to think about. She also was able to tell us of her many experiences from time she had served in Africa some years back.

The icing on the cake as it were was the enrolment of our newest soldier Keith Knox. It was a great evening, Keith’s wife Shirley and two of their daughters also attended. Keith testified, " I want to show everyone my belief in God and Jesus Christ, and that way is to wear the uniform of the Salvation Army which I will be very proud to wear".

What a way to finish our Easter weekend.

Click the picture to see a slide show of Keith’s enrolment

Saturday March 10th  2012
An evening with Richard Phillips

Richard is a remarkably talented musician as a pianist, composer and conductor. He is also a committed Christian and in this evening’s event he shared his experiences. These were often humorous but always very personal and moving. With his wife Lynn’s expert support on the multi-media we were able to hear his live piano playing backed up by recordings of accompaniments from Kettering band, for whom Richard is bandmaster, and various other groups. How Lynn managed to synchronise all the various tracks is a mystery. Suffice it to say it was flawless.

Richard commenced the evening with a powerful rendering of a Grieg piano concerto. Music that followed was mainly from Salvation Army vocal , some of his own, compositions. He spoke movingly of his low times and how the words of songs and scripture helped him.

The video clips below show the whole evening programme.


Part 1             Part 2

January 2012
The Youth Club Go Bowling

Judging by the video below a great time was had by all.