Magazine March 2020

2020 Bible reading afternoon

Parish Magazine ~ March 2020

The Rev'd Dr Gordon Giles

Dear friends,

By now you will probably have heard our news, announced on 23rd February, that after 17 years as Vicar of St Mary Magdalene’s, I have accepted the invitation from the Crown to take up the post of Canon Chancellor of Rochester Cathedral. Such a decision and all it entails yields a mixture of emotions for us all, inevitably, and it will take a while for all this to sink in, I am sure. Jessica and Maria and I have had a wonderful 17 years here, with you and among you, and it is by no means easy to leave the people we love and the home we have made. Among other things there is some significant down-sizing to do!

There will be a few months for preparation, reflection and leave-taking, not leastly as we enter the penitential season of Lent, which itself leads through Passiontide through to the greater Easter joy. In many senses we shall walk this journey together in a slightly different way this year. In this much, rejoice with us and weep with us as the joys and sorrows of this all enfolds. Then, in the early summer, on Saturday June 13th the Bishop of Rochester will install me in the Cathedral. You will all be extremely welcome.

Maria is doing her GCSEs and so she and Jessica will stay in Enfield a little longer.

In all this, please pray for us, as we shall be praying for you, through the coming few months, and beyond.

Tis good, Lord, to be here!
Yet we may not remain;
But since you bid us leave the mount,
Come with us to the plain.
J. Armitage Robinson c 1890

With love to you all,


From the Parish Registers

Interment of ashes in the Memorial Garden

16 February 2020
Anne Cynthia Allen

If anyone is celebrating a birthday or anniversary and wishes to take up the elements please inform the churchwardens.

For a PDF file of the Parish Magazine for this month please click here.

Regular Weekly Events

Sunday8:00 amHoly Communion
10:00 amEucharist (Second Sunday in month Family Service)
6:30 pmEvensong (or other ‘special’ service)
Please see the Google calendar for any further information regarding Sunday Services
Monday10:00 amMattins (BCP)
Tuesday7:45-9:00 pmBell Ringing Practice
Wednesday8:30 pmDrama Group
Thursday10:30 amHoly Communion (BCP)
7:30 pmChoir Practice

A Lost Son

Dscn4817 Window - Joseph, Jesus & Mary usm40

In January, 1920, the second window from the East End of the North aisle, was installed and dedicated on the second Sunday after Epiphany. It depicts the Holy Family in Joseph’s carpentry workshop, an image reminiscent of the Pre-Raphaelite picture Christ in the House of His Parents (The Carpenter’s Shop), 1849 by John Everett Millais. The window is dedicated To the Glory of God and in ever-loving memory of our beloved son Ronald Percy Jeaffreson H.A.C. who was killed in action at Bullecourt, France, 3rd May, 1917.

Ronald was one of four brothers and the family lived in a house on Bycullah Road called Belmont. His parents, Henry John and Edith Jeaffreson and his paternal aunt, who lived with her mother in Chase Court Gardens, are listed in the Parish magazines as regular contributors to the London Diocesan Board of Finance, an early form of Stewardship. Henry John Jeaffreson was an insurance broker and Ronald was following in his father’s footsteps, working for the firm of E. Uzielli and Co underwriters of Lloyd’s of London.

Ronald was the third of the four brothers, who were all born in Islington, and the road they were living on there when they were little was a very cosmopolitan one. Their neighbours came from Russia, Austria, Belgium, France, Ireland and Wales as well as London, the Home Counties and the Midlands. Their occupations included merchants of various commodities, shop assistants, clerks, printers, engineers, commercial travellers, students and even a “musical performer”. The children had two nurses to look after them and plenty of other children in the street to play with.

By 1908, the family had moved to Bycullah Road. Ronald had joined the Choir; his name is listed every month in the Parish magazines as a Choir member. In the tribute written to him in the Parish magazine of February, 1920, he is described as being the possessor of a charming voice, he generally sang the solos in the Anthems, and sang with such feeling that it was easy to realize that he fully meant what he sang.

 Ronald was also a budding actor and receives two mentions in The Middlesex Gazette for his performances with a group from the congregation of St Mary Magdalene’s (a prototype Drama Group!), who put on their shows in the Bycullah Athenaeum on Windmill Hill. At the end of 1908, they produced a children’s play called New Year’s Eve, in which the two main characters, Peggy and Bobby, were played by Miss Ivy Gifford and Master Ronald Jeaffreson. There are also to be several animated dolls and the scene is laid in a nursery.

 Then at the beginning of 1910, on a page of the newspaper which also has an advert for Pearson Bros (Great Sale of Madame Gay’s Stock at 50% off cost price) and for Harold Scroggie, Boot and Shoemaker (Evening Shoes and Cosy Slippers in great variety at popular prices) there is a report of a most successful entertainment by means of tableaux vivants given in the Athenaeum, on behalf of the Church of England Waifs and Strays Society. Ronald, aged 12, with his older brother, Bryan and his younger brother, Kenneth, presented with the other children, The “Advertisement” Competition, a series of cleverly contrived pictures…. the representation, in novel form, of various well-known leading lines of commerce….to the delighted audience. He was also part of a tableau depicting “Our Waifs and Strays”. The show was accompanied by singing and dancing and all the proceeds went to pay for the “Enfield cot” at a children’s home in Croydon.

Ronald was a pupil at Hurstpierpoint College in Sussex, presumably from the age of 13 and after his voice had broken. But just after his 18th birthday in November, 1915, he was working at Uzielli and Co. at Lloyd’s and, along with his two elder brothers, Norman and Bryan, he joined the Honourable Artillery Company. This is one of the oldest regiments in the British Army, tracing it roots back to the time of Henry VIII and becoming an important part of the City of London. By 1908, it was part of the newly formed Territorial Force and many young City men joined it, knowing that if war was declared, the regiment would be immediately transferred to the regular army.

And so it was that on 1st October, 1916, Ronald, with the rank of Lance Corporal, embarked for France with the 2nd Battalion of the Honourable Artillery Company. He had already spent nearly a year training and serving in Britain and immediately before his departure for the Front, had three weeks’ leave. Perhaps he spent them in Enfield with his family and perhaps he worshipped in St. Mary Magdalene’s then for the last time.

On 1st May, 1917, after six months in France, the 2nd Battalion of the H.A.C. received orders to support a second attack on the German front line near the village of Bullecourt, south-east of Arras. The village was to be re-taken from the enemy but they were well entrenched and had already repelled an attack by two brigades of the Australian army. Marching to the area on 2nd May, the early hours of the following morning would have found Ronald and his battalion waiting in position behind the village of Ecoust-St.Mein. The first attack on Bullecourt was successful but then the heavy German counter-attack drove the first wave back and the Honourable Artillery Company together with the 1st Battalion Royal Welch Fusiliers were ordered to take the village at all costs. This second attack took place at 10.30pm on 3rd May and, although the first objective was taken and the men pressed on to Bullecourt, again they were forced back by German machine and heavy-gun fire, sustaining heavy casualties. With reinforcements arriving the next day, the village of Bullecourt was finally taken on 7th May.

The 2nd Battalion of the Honourable Artillery Company lost seven officers and more than two hundred other ranks, including Lance-Corporal Ronald Percy Jeaffreson, who was listed as missing on the 3rd May and later presumed killed. We do not know when the news reached his family in Enfield.

Ronald’s eldest brother, Lieutenant Norman Jeaffreson, followed him to France in August, 1917 and served there for a year, seconded to the Royal Field Artillery and managing to survive unscathed. Private Bryan Jeaffreson was in France at the same time as his brother but in the 1st Battalion of the H.A.C., which had gone out in January, 1916 and returned the following February. Even the youngest brother, Kenneth, served with the H.A.C. but, joining up at the age of 17 in January, 1918, he never served overseas. To the great relief of their parents, all three returned to live at home and are registered there on the Electoral Rolls throughout the 1920s.

During the 1930s, all three brothers married. Norman’s son was named Ronald, after his uncle. Norman became a stockbroker. Bryan trained as a surgeon and practised in Leeds for the rest of his life. Perhaps his experiences in France influenced this career choice. Kenneth also went into business.

It is likely that the whole family were present for the dedication of the memorial window to their beloved son and brother. The choice of the Holy Family as the subject of the window perhaps speaks to us of a close-knit family, mourning for Ronald and taking comfort from the thought that the Holy Family understood the loss and sacrifice of a son. The Vicar of the time wrote, We have no doubt but that Ronald Percy Jeaffreson as a lad strove to follow in the footsteps of the Divine Son, and he possessed that charm of character and manner which comes from such an effort.

There is a photo of Ronald in the Lloyd’s of London Memorial Book. He wears a moustache but behind this there is the face of a boy. He was 19 when he was killed. He has no known grave but is remembered on the Commonwealth War Graves Commission Memorial at Arras in France. He is also remembered on the War Memorial on the Lloyd’s Building in Leadenhall Street and on the memorial in the chapel of Hurstpierpoint College, where his name is read out every year on Remembrance Day. And, of course, he is on our War Memorial as well as being specifically remembered with the beautiful stained-glass window of the Holy Family.

Joy Heywood

Sunday Morning Coffee

We all enjoy our cup of coffee after the Parish Communion on Sunday mornings. This is prepared for us week by week by a dedicated team of Volunteers under the direction of Anneliese Fenwick. She needs more people to help her and if you feel able to join the ‘Team’ please speak to Anneliese.

Fellowship Programme

18th March Frank Bayford on Chase Farm Hospital.

April 15th Joy Heyward ~ Butterfield Churches

May 20th Christopher Royall ~ a professional chorister and musician

Coffee and a Concert

A very good-sized audience enjoyed the February recital which was given by our vicar Gordon on flute and our friend Roderick Elmer on piano. They presented a very varied programme which was popular with the audience. We are fortunate to have such good musicians playing for us who obviously enjoy playing together.

For something completely different come to the next recital at 12.30 on Wednesday 11 March when Enfield Grammar School Band will play. They always produce a polished performance. Don’t forget the ever popular coffee/tea and cake beginning at 11.30 am in the vestry.

Eleanor Pritchard

11.30pm – 1pm

Retiring Collection

Coffee, tea and cake available in the Choir Vestry from 11.30 am

Concert programme for 2020

March 11 –Enfield Grammar School Band
April 8 – Keith Beniston: Organ
May 13 – Serafini Chamber Group
June 10 – Margaret Green: Vocal
July 8 – Marina Ersog: Piano
August – No Concert
September 9 – Catherine Leonard: Piano
October 14 – Marion and Michael Smith: Piano and Organ
November 11 – Jonathan Newby: Piano
December 12 – Lunch Time Carol Concert

2020 mothering-sunday

Coffee Mornings

A beautiful sunny morning heralded Janet Whelpdale’s coffee morning on the 18th February and we had a lovely morning with endless chat, coffee, cake and lovely raffle.  It was a good effort and raised £272.15 - keep up the good work everyone and, of course, big thanks to Janet. The next morning will be hosted by Eleanor Pritchard at 12 The Glen so she is hoping to see lots of you there.

Rita Barker 

Coffee Mornings 2020

Here are the dates for coffee mornings for 2020 so please make a note in your brand new diaries / calendars as we are collecting for a new kitchen in the vestry and relying on your wonderful, ongoing support

March 17: Eleanor
April 21: Alison Reeve
May 19: Rita Barker
June 16: Carol & Peter
July 21: June Carr
August 18: Gill & David Bird
September 15: Jackie Fish
October 20: Kate & Bob
November 17: Lilian & Colin
December 15: Rita Barker

Bible Reading Afternoon

Saturday 14th March from 2pm

2020 Bible reading afternoon

Last Lent we enjoyed a fascinating and uplifting day of reading whole books of the Bible from cover to cover. This year we shall spend an afternoon reading 1 and 2 Corinthians and the book of Ruth. Hearing Paul’s whole correspondence with the Church in Corinth will be an eye-opener, and the Book of Ruth will lead us up to a shared tea in the hall nicely. Do come along and listen for all or part of the afternoon, beginning at 2pm with 1 Corinthians, around 3.30 for 2 Corinthians and around 4.30pm for Ruth. Alison has a list for signing up to read chapters, do please volunteer for some! I shall introduce each book briefly.

Gordon Giles


St Mary Magdalene Recorder Group has been meeting for about two years, about twice a month at 11.00 am on Mondays. The group has not met since before Christmas but now seems a good time to begin again.

If you have ever played before or would like to begin, have a work with me or just run up at 12 The Glen at 11 am on Monday 9 March. The group has about eight players and we usually play in parts.

Eleanor Pritchard

Corona Virus

This is an ongoing and changing situation. Rest assured we are keeping a very close eye on NHS and Government advice and would encourage everyone else to do the same. In terms of receiving Holy Communion, it has always been and will likely remain an option to receive a consecrated wafer dipped in communion wine, and anyone to welcome to ask for this if they desire, for whatever reason. The Sacrament Act of 1547 makes it absolutely clear that this (or just receiving the bread, in fact) is equally valid as receiving both kinds.

Music Exams

Some Associated Board Music Exams (practical) will be taking place in the Church during March. The Theory Exam will take place on March 4th in the evening. Please be cautious if you are intending to go into the Church during the daytime, and if there are exams on do not enter the church by any door as it will almost certainly disrupt an exam. The Church diary on the parish website will say on which days exams are actually taking place. We are moving the exams from the Vicarage as an experiment to see if this is a viable way forward for the future. This may mean that some weekday services cannot take place on Mondays or Thursdays (see calendar).


Items for the April 2020 edition to the editor by Sunday 15 March. Please use the magazine section of the pigeon-holes or email to Documents should be in Microsoft Word or plain text. If you know of anyone who would be able to help with stapling or if you are unable to keep the dates please contact either Michael or Janet Dixon.

Magazine Stapling Rota

(10 am Saturday morning in the Church or earlier as arranged)

Southgate Youth Opera