New Church makes a Splash at John Hampden School

Painting John Hampden Vernon HallArmed with paint brushes, rollers, step ladders, and gallons of paint, over two dozen volunteers – including local children – recently turned out to decorate theVernonhall atJohnHampdenSchool, in Thame.  The work party was organised by Cornerstone, part of Long Crendon Baptist Church (LCBC), as a sign of good will following their recent launch of a 10 am Sunday morning service at the school.

Alan Haigh, Headteacher at John Hampden said “We are really pleased with what the members of Cornerstone have achieved in just a couple of days. As well as painting theVernonhall, which we use daily for lunches and other activities, they have also tidied up some of the plaster.”

As the hall is regularly booked the Cornerstone work party had to work to very tight deadlines and managed to get most of the work done in just one afternoon.JohnHampdenSchoolsupplied all the paint and the Church work party provided the labour to get the job done.

“It is amazing what you can achieve when you get a group of folk from the Church together,” said Senior Pastor Jeff Steadman ofLongCrendonBaptistChurch. “As the main Church continues to grow and with a third of the congregation coming from Thame we felt it was important to hold a congregation locally and it is great that the school have been so accommodating. “

Painting the hall“We are classified as a ‘community school’ and are delighted to have the Church meeting here. This is just one way in which we can encourage greater links with the local community and we look forward to developing a good long-term relationship with the Church,” concluded Alan Haigh.

Cornerstone, delivers a new café style format of Church where the congregation meet for breakfast and enjoy an informal yet reverent style of worship. They are keen to make the Christian faith accessible and understandable to all and so will often use video clips, contemporary music, and discussion in the services. Holding the Church in the Vernon Hall at the school also makes it easier for children to feel comfortable in the surroundings.

Paddy Harris, Youth Pastor at theLongCrendonBaptistChurchsaid, “It’s fantastic working with young people today and we have an exciting children’s programme with sports, crafts, bible stories and games at Cornerstone. At LCBC we have hundreds of youngsters attending activities throughout the week and it would be brilliant to run some things in partnership withJohnHampdenSchoolin the future.”

As the School and Church partnership develops, there is already talk about future work parties at the school. “The Cornerstone congregation is new initiative fromLongCrendonBaptistChurchwith a real desire to be a blessing to both the school and the local community. There are plans to celebrate the Easter weekend in style so watch out for more details of our Easter community events in the next few weeks,” concludes Pastor Steadman.

Note to editors:

Cornerstone is a congregation of LongCrendonBaptistChurchthat has been meeting at JohnHampdenSchoolsince 2nd of February 2008. The pastoral team of Long Crendon Baptist Church regularly meet with other Churches in Thame who welcome the move to launch a new service in Thame.  High-resolution digital photographs have been included that cover the Cornerstone work party in JPEG format as requested.

For further photographs contact John Bancroft on 0845 331 6069 or email


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