A CATHEDRAL’S Canon returned to the church where he was a choirboy to help celebrate its 160th anniversary.
Shotton Colliery-born Rev Paul Greenwell, who is the Canon of Ripon Cathedral, opened the four-day landmark celebration at St Saviour’s Church.
Rev Greenwell, whose late parents June and Maurice lived in Shotton before moving to Ripon, described the Grange Terrace-based church as “home”.
In his visitor’s book comment he wrote: “Thank you St Saviour’s Church for 160 years of welcome, worship and witness and for being so much part of my family and my own personal pilgrimage.”
Church warden George Robinson thanked those who made the events, which ran from last Friday to Monday, such a success.
“It went very well indeed,” he said.
“We had people attend from all around the district.”
Around 40 people attended the opening ceremony led by Rev Greenwell, with 60 people at a performance by Shotton Primary School choir on the Friday evening.
The church was open all day on Saturday and held displays from various church groups.
On Saturday night, 85 people enjoyed a concert by Hartlepool Male Voice Choir.
About 50 people attended a service on Sunday morning led by Reverend Mark Bryant, Bishop of Jarrow, who praised the completion of £34,000 of recent lighting work at the church – without which it would have had to close.
There were 80 people at a Songs of Praise-style event on Sunday evening, also presided over by the Bishop.
On Monday, 300 pupils from Shotton Primary School descended on the church to perform prayers and readings and displayed work featuring the church through its history.
Some dressed in 1800s costume and there was a cardboard model of the church on show.