NIGEL SPOONER entertained on the newly restored Harrison organ! KAREN AU our next Soloist on MAY 6th.

Thank you to all who joined us at St. Silas for coffee/tea and biscuits on SATURDAY, MARCH 4TH at 10.45am.

NIGEL SPOONER gave a MAGNIFICENT short programme of organ music at 11am, which inspired everyone, and gave us all something to think about! He is a highly talented and virtuoso performer and did NOT DISAPOINT !

We raised over £140 towards the recent restoration of the organ, and Margaret and Ken Wiggans made dozens of cups of coffee and created a very friendly atmosphere; many thnaks to them both!
Our next coffee morning awith organ music will be on MAY 6th at 10.30am; th eorgan will be played by KAREN AU, former organ scholar at Corpus Chrste college, Cambridge, and also former organ scholar at Blackburn Cathedral. come and enjoy an hour of friendship and music, and support Karen, who is a highly taleneted young organist! Entrance £5 payable at the door.

Bishop Julian Rededicates our historic Harrison & Harrison Pipe organ!

On Sunday, April 24th, the Rt. Rev Julian Henderson, Bishop of Blackburn, conducted a Eucharistic Service at St. Silas Parish Church in Blackburn, to rededicate our recently restored 1904 pipe organ.

Our church was full and we were also very glad to welcome as Special Guests the Lord Leiutenant of Lancashire and his wife, Lord and Lady Shuttleworth. It was their first visit to St. Silas, and remarked what a beautiful Church we have; and expressed a wish to visit us again soon.

The organ was SILENT until after the Rededication by Bishop Julian, and until after the Gospel was read by one of our choir members, Jean Wilson.

Our organist then let fly with a magnificent Carillon, glorifying God and thanking Him for helping us to reach this happy day.

The Choir sang 2 short pieces; “I give you a new commandment” by Peter Aston; and “O Taste and See How Gracious the Lord is” by Vaughan Williams, with Carole Scadding as our Soloist.
We were glad to welcome old friends and new strangers, whom we hope will not remain strangers, but return again and again to St. Silas Parish Church!

COME AND VISIT US! at st. Silas Parish Church, Preston New Rd.

On SUNDAY mornings, we hold a said Service of Holy Communion at 9am, lasting about 40 minutes.

At 10.30am; there is a sung Eucharist, with hymns, and a robed choir, which lasts just over 1hour; and usually followed by coffee, biscuits and a friendly chat.

ALL are very welcome to both these services; please make yourselves known to us.

There is a short Evening Prayer at 6pm, with no sermon; occasionally we will ask visiting choirs to sing choral Evensong for us, the 1st of these was on JULY 10TH; when the Rawstorne Singers sang, conducted by MICHAEL SANDS, and accompanied by our own organist, David Brindle.

If you sing in a choir, or know of a choir who would like to sing Choral Evensong for us, using our newly restored Harrison 3 manual pipe organ, please let us know, as we will make you very welcome!

email or telephone 07935 498 060; or 01772 312678; and speak to either Jean or David.

WE CAN ALSO DO WITH NEW CHOIR MEMBERS IN ALL 4 VOICES; we meet for rehearsal on the 1st and 3rd Wednesdays of each month, and no experience necessary! Just enthusiasm! contact us as above.

Bell Ringers are also very welcome; we have a good set of Bells, and a few very talented and dedicated Ringers, but we can ALWAYS do with new members.

Do come and “try us out” one Sunday! maybe you will want to come more often.

Our new Priest in Charge was appointed during Advent in 2016, she is Sheelagh Aston, and comes to us with a strong community based interest from the North East of England to take us forward in growth and faith, to promote love, friendship and support in our Community. We have welcomed her with open arms, and wish her every blessing as we venture forward together in 2017.


SALLY and her producer CHRIS, spent 2 and a half hours at St. Silas parish Church on wednesday april 6th; interviewed lots of our congregation, and listened to David Brindle demonstrating the nearly completely restored pipe organ. THERE ARE 8 RANKS OF PIPES still to be installed before it is finished, but it alreday sounds magnificent!

The outgoing Headteacher from St. Silas Primary school was interviewed, as she leaves the school this term to take up post of Principal of The British School, in Muscat, Oman from May. Hilary Hinchcliffe has been at St. Silas for 10 years, and hands the reins to her very able Seputy Head, Michelle Battersby.

Sally and Chris have suggested Hilary keeps in touch with us and BBC Lancs listeners with an Audio Diary of her experiences. We wish her well, and also wish great success to Mrs Battersby in taking the very successful and popular school forward.

Dr. John Bertalot was also interviewed, as he has taken a great interest in our organ restoration, and feels it is one of the very finest in the Blackburn Diocese.

simeon wood, musical entertainer

Our evening on April 25th with SIMEON WOOD was a great success!

Everyone had a “Good Time” with well remembered tunes played on the Flute, the Tin Whistle (both Long and Short!); the bamboo Recorder, the Panpipes, and the NHS Walking Stick!!

Simeon certainly knows how to get his audience to love him, both in words and music!

The Canapes and Wine afterwards kept folk happy, friendly, and reluctant to go home, and hopefully, wanting to come back to St Silas for more of our interesting progrogramme.

tickets available from 01254671293 ; 0125454991 and 07935498060 or at the door for all our Events. and by email at

To make a Donation; or buy some Tickets for our Events!

If you wish to support this worthy cause to maintain a Historic 3 manual pipe organ, and you send a donation, please ensure you send your name and address, so that Gift Aid of over 25% can be added to your gift! For example, for every £10, at least £2.50p will be added to our fund; we will send you the Form and a Thank You letter when we receive your Gift.

Please make your cheques payable to  St. Silas PCC Organ Fund; and send either to me, Jean Brindle ; 28 SPRINGWOOD CLOSE, WALTON PARK, PRESTON, PR5 4AF or to St. Silas Vicarage, Preston New Rd, Blackburn, BB2 6PS; together with a stamped addressed envelope for return of tickets, and Gift Aid Forms.

Tickets for all our Events are available from Jean Brindle (07935498060);

from Carole Scadding (01254 54991; and from Canon Arthur Ranson (01254 671293)

or at the door on your arrival on the day of the Event.


We look forward to seeing you all at some or all of our fundraising activities.

Donations on line now!

We are in the process of registering with Charities Aid foundation; so very soon you will not need your cheque book or an address to which to post your gift!

St SilasOrgan Fund can benefit instantly from your gifts!

To date, we have raised OVER £55,000 of the needed £130,000; we have had donations from friends who want to maintain and restore our organ and organ music, and from some most unexpected sources! We are so grateful to ALL WHO HAVE GIVEN so generously.

Tickets are available now for APRIL 25TH (SIMEON WOOD, a Musical Entertainer) and for JULY 4TH (CLITHEROE ROYAL GRAMMAR SCHOOL SWING BAND) Events; please come and see (and hear!) what is on offer.

Update on our Fund Raising!


Our SECOND EVENT, “The Organist Entertains” given by Nigel Ogden, was a RESOUNDING SUCCESS (in many ways, as the sounds he produced from our lovely organ amazed and amused everyone.)

The Canapes and Nibbles afterwards, with a glass of wine or juice were VERY good; many thanks to all who contributed to these. THEY ALL DISAPPEARED, so must have pleased everyone.

Profits raised from this Event reached just over £1,000.

 So the Funds in the Bank now stand at about  £54 and1/2K!

 Another £10,000 has been promised from The John Pilling Grant Fund based in Blackburn, who will allow us to use the money once the Contracts are signed and the work is under way!

We have lots of other exciting ventures to come during 2015, and we shall update this page in due course.

The next interesting Event will be SATURDAY, APRIL 25TH

SIMEON WOOD; A Musical Entertainer.

SIMEON is an exceptionally talented multi-instrumentalist, playing over 20 instruments, including


And all interspersed with his INFECTIOUS HUMOUR and STORIES.

Tickets are £10 for Adults, and children will be admitted FREE if with an Adult.

Other Reminders;

Notelets with a variety of the cartoons drawn by Janet Ranson for the Calendar are still available, now at SLASHED PRICES! OF £3 EACH

Contact me by email at and we can arrange delivery.


or FROM CAROLE SCADDING (0125454991);





We launched our appeal  to raise money to restore our magnificent pipe organ at the beginning of August! yesterday, the bank account for the organ fund reached £47,186.00, thanks to several spontaneous and generous donors.

We still have a long uphill journey to raise the required £130,000, but we have had several verbal promises of further gifts, and we have yet to start our Events, which will raise even more interest, we hope and expect.

I have approached our local schools; and both Westholme School and St Silas C of E Primary School have agreed to spread the word of our venture and our programme of Events to their pupils and their parents; Queen Elizabeth School and st Wilfrid’s school are interested in hearing about what we have planned, and we hope they will also enjoy all or some of what will be on offer.


REMEMBER SUSAN WHITSEY’S GREAT IDEA? of saving our unwanted and heavy small coins?

In August I counted and carried to the Bank over £30 in copper coins.

This week, in early February I counted out £51 in copper and silver, as a few kind and generous souls are now saving their 5ps and 10p pieces!

So PLEASE KEEP COLLECTING!; and when you come to our events, bring the unwanted coppers and 5p pieces; EVERY LITTLE HELPS!

watch this space; and see how much we can raise together!