Church gears up for anniversary

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a SHEFFIELD church celebrates its 50th anniversary this October and one long-standing member of the congregation is hoping to trace those who were there right at the beginning.

Danny Baker has worked at Gleadless Valley Methodist Church, on Blackstock Road, as a preacher and youth worker since it opened in 1961.

He wants to get in touch with anyone who has worshipped there over the years, and especially those with photographs and stories to share.

“I was here at the stone laying in 1960 and I’ve been here ever since,” Danny said.

“I met my wife Carol here, got married here and brought my children up here. I’m hoping to make contact with the young folk who were at the church at the beginning.

“I’d like us to get together to share memories and build up a history of the church.”

Danny would like to collect photographs for an exhibition on the history of the church as part of anniversary celebrations over the weekend of October 15 and 16.

A performance by the Sheffield 13 Brass Ensemble has been scheduled, as well as a special Sunday service.

Danny added: “I only have two photographs of my own. They’re of the monthly marches and parades we used to hold on Blackstock Road and the nearby streets during the 1970s. But that’s all there is. I could reel off a long list of people’s names that I’d like to hear from.”

The church, which was extended on to a second floor following a £170,000 refurbishment in 1999, continues to serve the Gleadless Valley community with activities every day of the week.

As part of the refurbishment, 140 children from the area painted a colourful mural in the downstairs activity room, featuring scenes from the Valley.

“I like to think it was created by the kids for the kids,” Danny said.

n Email danncal@cijd.freeserve.co.uk or call Danny on 0114 237 8528.