Church News


Church News


We are delighted to tell you that after an interview on Friday 15th March,  Bishop Jane has invited the Revd Vanessa Layfield to be our next Rector (House for Duty) in the Wayland benefice and Vanessa has accepted.   Bishop Graham will institute and Archdeacon Catherine will induct Vanessa to the post of Rector (House for Duty) on Thursday 4th July at 7.00pm at Holy Cross, Caston.


Please pray for Vanessa and her husband, Jonathan,  as they say their ‘goodbyes’ in her present benefice and prepare to move into the diocese.

Letter From Vanessa:

“Are we nearly there yet?” our children would say when small, but usually they were more interested in the destination than the journey.

I am Vanessa, the new Rector of the Wayland group of parishes. Married to Jonathan, we have five adult children, a four-year-old granddaughter, an eight-year-old labrador, Berkeley, and a narrowboat called Song of Songs.

As I write, we are aboard the boat, navigating our way through the canal and river network from Cheshire towards its final destination at Whittington on the river Wissey, before we move to the rectory in Caston.

Like our children, we are excited about reaching our destination, but unfortunately, we can’t ignore our journey, however much we might like to!  Life is like that isn’t it? A journey of events, with sunshine one day and rain the next.

Throughout my incumbency, there will of course be times of sunshine and rain for each of us, and I know that Wayland has been without an incumbent for a number of years, so your own journey as a benefice will have experienced much sunshine and rain during that period. Huge thanks must go to all who’ve kept the boat afloat, particularly the retired clergy, lay ministers, and churchwardens of our parishes. Please don’t think you need to abandon ship when I arrive, I’m looking forward to working with you all!

“Are we nearly there yet?” Currently we’re at lock 1 of 17 on the Northampton Arm of the Grand Union Canal….. so, not quite, but nearly!

Hopefully, at the time of my licensing on 4th July 2024, at 7pm, in the Church of the Holy Cross, Caston, the sun will be shining brightly.

My first Sunday service will be on 7th July at 10.30am in St Martin’s, Thompson. Refreshments will be served afterwards.

I can’t wait to meet everyone in Wayland, to hearing about your life’s journey, and to sharing my journey with you.

With love


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If you would like more information about the renovations or would like to discus making a donation then please write to The Treasurer St Martin's Church, c/o College Farm, Thompson, Thetford IP24 1QG, get in touch by phone on 01953 483.318 or fill in the form below.

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