A CHURCH in south Derbyshire has held its first ever civic service.
South Derbyshire’s civic service was held at All Saints Church in Findern – one of the smallest churches in the district.
The event saw the chairman of South Derbyshire District Council, Ann Hood, dedicate herself to her year in office.
She was joined by her consort Frank Hood, Derbyshire Deputy Lieutenant Pat Taylor, Arthur Allman and other dignitaries.
Councillor Hood said: “I was delighted that so many people could join me at my parish church.
“There was almost certainly a tiny chapel of ease on the site of the present church, which dated back to Saxon times. All Saints was opened and consecrated in 1863 and is a Grade II-listed building.
“In such a small building, there was a very warm and spiritual atmosphere. Lesley Bird, from Findern, had decorated the archway at the entrance of the churchyard with a beautiful garland of flowers.
“The service was celebrated by Canon David Edwards and the Reverend Sue Starkey. Singing was led by members of the wonderful Cantabile choir with organist Philip King and trumpeter Steven Salmon.”
Mr Hood said: “More than 100 people turned up.
“The council always said the church was too small because you need to be able to get 150 people in, so Ann and the vicar counted how many chairs they could get in.
“The church looked nice with the flowers, and all the civics commented on how well the service went, especially the choir.”
Derbyshire High Sheriff Derek Mapp also attended, along with council chairmen and mayors from Derbyshire, East Staffordshire, Gedling, Staffordshire Moorlands and Lichfield.