Our regular weekly services are held at Bradley Street at 10.15am. Each month on (usually) the fourth Sunday there is a service at 6.00pm at Dryleaze House.
If you have been invited to a Dryleaze service, please click here. The rest of this page applies only to our normal morning services.
Usually the steward will contact you by letter well before the service with information about the service, but just in case a (generalised) copy of the letter is available downloaded from here, and the information is summarised below here.
Our worship space is very open and flexible. Usually we sit in a horse-shoe around the table, but other arrangements can be made if you discuss with the stewards a couple of weeks before.
We are happy with a wide variety of types of service, and would be delighted to help you in any way you feel will bring us to worship God together.
We have a system of AV screens which we use for the words of hymns and songs, and for any other congregational responses or guidance. We normally use Powerpoint. The slides are usually prepared by one of the team here, but if you want to prepare them yourself a template is available, together with some helpful notes
When the duty steward contacts you before each service you will be asked to provide an order of service and references for the songs and hymns so that the slides can be prepared. If you want to discuss the items to be displayed please speak to your steward in good time - we try to be as helpful as possible, but it is difficult to make last-minute changes just before the service.
We have several Worship Leaders, and many other people are willing to read lessons. The steward will give you further information, but again, please bear in mind that drama or other major elements of a service do need a lot of time to prepare.
We rarely have children at our ordinary services, but when there are children, they will leave after the second hymn.
There is a sound system, and the sermon may be recorded. There is a loop system fitted.
Methodist Worship Books are available but they are not kept in the seats so please tell your steward if you intend to use them.
Bibles will be in the seats - we use the New International Version.
Although the words of hymns and songs are displayed on the screens, there are a few people who find that difficult, so we like to supply books as well. The hymn books available are "Singing The Faith", "Hymns and Psalms" and "Mission Praise" (the 'Combined Edition', up to hymn 798) and our own "United In Worship", whose contents are available here.
If you are unfamiliar with these, more information can be found here.
If you do need a song that is not in any of these books, please tell the steward well before the service, so that the words can be displayed and the organist given a chance to set the music.
If a preacher needs to speak to the organist or wishes to discuss music please contact the duty steward, who will put you in touch with the right person for that service
In order to encourage a sense of worship from the outset, at 10.15, the assistant steward will ring the bell, and lead you and the steward into the body of the church. The assistant steward will put the candle used by the prayer group on the communion table. You will please sit (on a chair between the lectern and the communion table) while the steward welcomes you, announces a chorus, then after a time of silence leads the congregation in a responsive sentence, and hands the service over to you.
Because we issue a printed notice sheet, usually there are very few notices given out in the service. Generally what notices there are will be given later in the service in association with the Offering. This is designed to ensure that there is a worshipful atmosphere from the outset of the service, which is not broken by unnecessary verbiage, as well as to bring the work of the church more fully into the context of the service.
We are happy to use either the old or new form of the Lord's Prayer - or neither, but if the Lord's Prayer is announced the congregation will use the new form unless explicitly told otherwise.
This is a series of photographs taken by Alison Jackson, one of our members. We hope they give you some idea of the style of the building - and may help you recognise it when you pass.
The acoustics are friendly, especially with the sound system we have installed; but two or three of our members are hard of hearing, so you will be asked to use a clip-on microphone - or use the 'lollipop' on the stand in front of the lectern if you prefer it.
There is no pulpit, and the lectern is fairly small - approximately 80cm by 40cm, but you can use the window seat for papers and other material.
The worship area is very light; sometimes too light for low-powered projectors or screens. If you want to use visuals other than the AV system, it is important you discuss them with the steward well beforehand.
The United Church is halfway along Bradley Street, on the northern, left hand side as you approach the town.
There is an issue with parking at the church. The space immediately outside the front gate is used for dropping off and collecting the elderly and infirm members of the congregation, so we ask preachers not to park there. There is usually space to park in the road nearby, especially on the opposite side of the road, but there is a free public car park in Gloucester Street, close to the junction with the street labelled Haw Street on the map below (it is actually Bear Street!), which has a footpath through to Bradley Street, and which always has space on a Sunday.
There is access from street level to the entrance by a lift large enough to take a wheelchair, and from that point all parts of the building are on one level with no steps, and are fully accessible. If you need assistance with the lift, there is a bell on the right opposite the lift door. One toilet is suitable for wheelchair access.
Click here for a local map.