The Benefice of St. Bartholomew

Coronavirus Information and Updates

Updated on 4th April 2020

*** The most recent updates are in purple text. ***

Our Churches and Prayer

In light of the Government guidance around non-essential contact, the Archbishops of Canterbury and York have issued advice that public worship is suspended until further notice.

Churches are now be closed. Prayers will be said by clergy and ministers at home. Please do continue with your own prayers. Prayer booklets are available to download and/or print here.

If you would like somebody’s name on the prayer list for the sick - with their permission - please send the Benefice Office the details with a contact number where possible. Click here and when the new window opens, select the ‘Contact Form’ tab to send the Benefice Office a message.

Please remember in your prayers Barbara Waterman, Michael Hobbs, priest, Florence Elizabeth Stanley and John Pendril, who died recently. May they rest in peace and rise in glory.

Benefice Office

Jo is dealing with emails remotely - six days a week - from home, so overall the service is improved!


The need is greater than ever. Please add an extra item to your weekly shop.

Parish Giving

Please contact the treasurer or Church Warden for your Church to identify how you can continue your giving during this time. Despite our buildings being closed, we still have costs to meet. Your support is much appreciated

Covid19 Support Groups

Villages have their own help systems going. Here are the details:

Semley: the main contact is David Curless, telephone: 07719 655 036

Sedgehill: the main contact is Rosalind Conlon, telephone: 07799 895 501

In Donhead St Mary with Charlton, all households should have received a leaflet with contact details to use in the case of need for assistance. The support group leads are shown below:

  • Richard Ecclestone, telephone; 07713 686 368
  • Paddy Bleakley, telephone: 07789 888 905
  • Tim France, telephone: 07712 002 900
  • Phil/Jo James: telephone: 01747 828 227

Donhead St Andrew: the contact is Judith Barton, telephone 01747 828 244

In East Knoyle, Tim Hyde, Chairman of the Parish Council, will receive calls for assistance, telephone 01747 830 718.

Will you volunteer to help self-isolated residents in Shaftesbury, Motcombe and The Donheads? Or do you need some support yourself? Click here for more information.

Baptisms and Weddings

All Baptisms and Weddings are postponed until further notice.


The Crematorium is still accepting funerals with small gatherings of mourners, (only three seated in each row). Funeral services may be held in the graveyard or cemetery with a priest.


Wren’s Shop at East Knoyle is able to deliver groceries - telephone: 01747 830 735. Click here for the Wren’s Shop website which gives more information.

The Tesco supermarket in Shaftesbury is now closing from 10.00 pm until 6.00 am to allow more time for the restocking of shelves. The store is now serving elderly and vulnerable customers only on Monday, Wednesday and Friday between 9.00 am and 10.00 am.

Abbott’s Greengrocers in Shaftesbury are now only accepting telephone orders which may be collected from the shop - telephone 01747 853 424.

Ludwell Stores (telephone: 01747 828 227) will open early every day from 8.00 am to 8.30 am JUST for those who are over 70 and would like a quiet shop. The shop is also operating modified opening hours from 23rd March 2020 as follows:

Monday to Saturday
08:00 to 08:30 Open to old and vulnerable customers ONLY (Please, only use this time slot if you are avoiding close contact with people).
08:30 to 14:00 Open for normal trading
14:00 to 17:00 Closed but available by phone or email to take orders for emergency delivery
Sunday - Closed

Click here for the Ludwell Stores website which gives more information.

Semley Village Stores (telephone: 01747 830 832) is offering to deliver your shopping to your door. This will be a free service. Click here for more information.

Waitrose in Gillingham serves older customers from 8.00 am till 9.00 am, with a maximum of 45 people in the shop at any time.

'This Is Alfred' Website: By far the best place to look for information about shops is on 'This is Alfred's daily update - find it here.