Ross Open Gardens

It’s nearly time! 20+ gardeners, all around the town, have been putting the finishing touches to their gardens today and tomorrow (Saturday 3rd June) and Sunday you can go to see them between 12 and 4 o’clock. You can pick up your brochure (also your entry ticket) from St Mary’s Church at Coffee tomorrow & Sgwrs (10.30) or later, St Joseph’s School (our main car park) or the Market House. If you already have a ticket you can exchange it for a brochure at those places. Don’t miss t, it’s been 4 years since the last one.

This is Friends of St Mary’s event, our big one, all money raised goes to the upkeep and development of St Mary’s Church.

Open Gardens – more help required

Dear Friend,

We have a garden, close to church, all set to open over the weekend of 3rd / 4th June but we need some help in supervising it. There is nothing to do but be there and sit in the garden to welcome people when they arrive. If you could help for a couple of hours (12-4pm) on either of those days please contact Mark (01989 565386)

We could also do with a few more people to help serve teas in church.

Ascension from the tower

We are in the season of Ascension. If you listen carefully on Sunday (21st May) at about 10.50 (after the 9.30 service) you may hear St Mary’s adult and youth choirs singing from the tower.

These are a couple of archive pictures. Who can you spot? Guess the dates. Remembering especially Christine Wheatley RIP.

Can you help us?

A chance to declutter? – Do you have mismatched and incomplete sets of China? I bet you do! I f so, we’d like them all at St Mary’s. We’d like cups, saucers, tea plates, milk jugs and sugar bowls (even tea pots). The more mis-matched the better. Sets also welcome and we’ll mismatch them! If you can help, please leave your contribution in the kitchen in church whenever convenient. 

Ascension Day

Thursday (18th May) is Ascension Day, it used to be considered such an important festival that schools closed; not so much now. There’s a quiet, short said service in St Mary’s at 10am and a Sung Eucharist at 7.30. All are welcome.

Can you spot the Ascension in this window (from the Markye Chapel in St Mary’s) and what else is going on?

Tales from the Tombs 2

Following the popularity of last year’s talk and walk here is another evening of local history, stories from St Mary’s churchyard. Wednesday 28th June 2023, 7.30 pm.

We’ll begin the evening in church with a presentation from Heather, over a glass or two of wine to hear about the development of the churchyard and its surrounding buildings and who is buried in it. After that, weather permitting, we’ll wander out (glass in hand) for one of Heather’s guided walks (a short one) to see it all in context.

This event is preceded at 7pm by the Friends of St Mary’s Annual General Meeting.

Book Talk @ St Mary’s – Phil Rickman – The Fever of the World

Saturday 15th April 2023 – 6pm. The Fever of the World

St Mary’s Church, Ross-on-Wye

Join Phil Rickman for a talk about The Fever of the World, the latest Merrily Watkins novel. Book 16 in the Merrily Watkins series – now a critically acclaimed ITV drama starring Anna Maxwell-Martin.

Merrily Watkins is Deliverance Consultant or Advisor on the Paranormal for the Diocese of Hereford. Or Exorcist, as it used to be known. It’s a real job; there’s at least one in every diocese in the UK. They work with psychiatrists, social workers and the police. And their own beliefs are often tested. There are few certainties. The borderline between psychology and the unexplained is often laid out in barbed wire.

Welcome to the River Wye: a place of poetry, historic obsession… and occult murder.

The curious death of an estate agent is being investigated by detective David Vaynor who, before joining the police, studied the famous 18th century poet William Wordsworth. As Vaynor is discovering, the dark paganism that changed Wordsworth’s life still lingers on the banks of the River Wye today – and there are some killings even the police can’t approach…

Enter Merrily Watkins, parish priest, single mum, and diocesan exorcist for Hereford. Called away from her local hauntings, Merrily finds herself confronting the riverside ghosts who, as Wordsworth puts it, ‘promote ill purposes and flatter foul desires’. In the ancient heart of the Wye Valley, a buried grudge is about to come to light.

A joint event organised by and benefitting The Friends of St Mary’s Ross on Wye and Rossiter Books. £3 off the price of the book if you buy a signed copy on the evening.

Easter and Islam – Talk at St Mary’s this Wednesday at 7

Christians and Muslims venerate Jesus deeply. The Gospels and the Qur’an both call him the Word of God, narrate his birth from the Virgin Mary and detail his miracles. However, they also differ profoundly over crucial aspects of his life and person. 

At this most poignant time in the church’s year, can any insights in the Islamic portrayal aid Christians? This talk will outline the Islamic portrayal of Jesus and enquire into possibilities.

Fresh Coffee & the best home made cakes in town

Saturday 1st April –  Coffee & Sgwrs @ St Mary’s with cakes and a raffle (and Welsh conversation if you wish) from 10.30 am until Noon, everyone welcome.

This month it’s provided by St Mary’s Toast & Toddle group.

Wednesday 5th April – Toast and Toddle, Easter special, from 10am

Wednesday 12th April – NO Toast and Toddle 

Wednesday 19th April – Back to normal, 8.45 am

Holy Week and Easter in the Ross Parishes

We are approaching the most exciting week of the Christian Year. We can’t pretend it’s a new story and there have been plenty of plot spoilers over the last 2000 years. But you’ll find the full range of services on our website at

Save the dates and join us for some or all of the journey which begins this Sunday (2nd April) with Palm Sunday services at Ross and Walford including a performance of the popular Faure Requiem in a service for Holy Week at St Mary’s, performed by our 60 strong Come & Sing choir. There’s still time to join that choir if you wish.

News from Toast & Toddle

Saturday 1st April –  Coffee & Sgwrs @ St Mary’s, with cakes and a raffle (and Welsh conversation if you wish) from 10am, everyone welcome.

Wednesday 5th April – Toast and Toddle, Easter special, from 10am

Wednesday 12th April – NO Toast and Toddle 

Wednesday 19th April – Back to normal, 8.45 am