Maidenhead Festival – 23 July 2016

The sun shone virtually all day as we once again had a stall in Kidwells Park as part of the ever-popular Maidenhead Festival.

We were grateful for our location within the park which enabled us to erect both of the marquees and give us plenty of space.  With set up in the park from 8am, it was an early start for us, but we were able to complete by around 9am and retired inside for a short time of prayer and some well-deserved bacon butties, kindly organised by Lesley.

This year, we decided to dispense with the old sign, seen in the photo below.  Although it was clearly effective and eye-catching, the website address has changed to and the wooden support framework was heavy and cumbersome to transport and set up. Instead we opted for a couple of pop up banners, which we noticed seemed to be very popular among other stallholders this year.


As in previous years, we opted to focus on children’s colouring with a wordsearch also available for the older ones. Goody bags containing some information about us, a Parkside pen, balloon, rubbers, coloured pens, notepad and a children’s activity leaflet were given away to everyone who completed colouring.

As well as helping with colouring, we were able to enjoy some good conversations with those who visited us, in addition to giving out a number of invites to activities and Christian literature including several copies of the book about the Queen’s faith, The Servant Queen – and the King she serves.

As usual, it was a long and tiring day, but worthwhile in every sense and we’re grateful for God’s help and support to us during our time in the park.

We look forward to being a part of Maidenhead Festival next year as well.

discover: Week 5 – 2 February 2014

Discover Week 4 MV
Last week’s memory verse

We began the fifth week of discover with the singing of Come and see and prayer.

Afterwards we looked at the memory verse from last week – which again proved a struggle for people to remember.

We sang some children’s choices and finished our time together by singing I do not know what lies ahead.

The reading for this week was from Mark 15:40 to 16:8 and afterwards Alan came up to speak on this week’s subject ‘Resurrection: Why can Jesus rise?‘.  Tweets from Alan’s talk are below:

You can view or download Alan’s presentation here – 20140112 – Discover Week 5

You can download Alan’s talk by right-clicking on the link below and selecting ‘Save link as…’.  Alternatively, press the play button to listen directly from the website.

Discover Week 5

discover: Week 1 – 5 January 2014

We had a good number in for our first week of the new discover service at Parkside.

This was the first week that we had served coffee (and other drinks) in the main hall and it seemed to work well, with those arriving, happy to partake and mingle ahead of the main service.

Discover Week 1

The opening week was chaired by Phil and began with an a capella version of I do not know what lies ahead and prayer.

Phil explained about the new format for discover and that the children would be going out for their activities at 12:00pm, at which point Alan Michael would begin a six week series using content from the well-known Christianity Explored course.

After a number of children’s choices, it was time for the children to adjourn to the back rooms, along with Lesley, Sarah and Brian.

Phil read from Mark 1:1-15, before handing over to Alan.

Alan’s title for the first week of the course was Good News: What are we doing here?’ and worked through the first few verses of Mark 1, explaining them one verse at a time.

At the end of the service, Alan offered some handouts with questions on, based on the Questions Week 1passage covered, as well as inviting questions either via pen and paper or making use of Twitter.

We were very pleased with how the first week went and look forward to hearing David Angell next week, who will be taking the second week of the course, with the subject Identity: Who is Jesus?

You can download a copy of Alan’s slides from Week 1 of discover here – discover-week-1-05012014.pdf or download the talk by right-clicking on the link below and selecting ‘Save link as…’.  Alternatively, press the play button to listen directly from the website.

Discover Week 1

We hope you’ll be able to join us next week.

Maidenhead Festival – 27 July 2013

We had an excellent day at Maidenhead Festival and had a stall in Kidwells Park with a colouring competition for the children and various literature displayed.

The day began for us at 8am with the setup of two marquees along with various tables, chairs, pencils, colouring sheets, literature and stands.  We made time for a short time of prayer before getting out into the park in time for the official start at 9.30am.

Our location in the park was good, with sufficient space for us to be able to spread the tables out around the edge of the marquees.

The Parkside stall in Kidwells Park
The Parkside stall in Kidwells Park

We were also opposite the sand pit, set out with its rows of deckchairs to guard the edge.  This extra attraction helped to ‘draw’ people to that part of the park.

The sandpit and deckchairs
The sandpit and deckchairs

As in previous years, there were a number of other ‘charity’ stalls set out in the park, along with fun fair rides for the children and a good selection of food stalls – all supporting the main stage and acoustic tent.

We had four different pictures to colour, which Judith had kindly arranged, all of which represented a scene from a Bible story which included water.  People arriving with children were given a choice of picture to colour.  Once complete, they then entered details of the child’s name, age, address and added a parent’s signature to the back.

All entries went into our competition with the first prize a £5 book token from Quench.

We had a relatively quiet morning, ironically while most of our volunteers were there.  Things became busier after lunch and for most of the afternoon we were so busy we had to buy more sweets and obtain more copies of the colouring sheets.

Blue skies and sunshine
Blue skies and sunshine
Getting busy
Getting busy

Eventually, after warm sunshine for most of the day, the long-promised rain began to arrive.  This had the effect of forcing more people into the tent as they sort shelter from the rain.

The inclement weather drew more into the marquees
The inclement weather drew more into the marquees
Final view before the big pack up began
Final view before the big pack up began

Around 5pm, we decided to call it a day, along with most of the other stall-holders.

It had been another successful outing in the park and we’re grateful for God’s leading and guiding with our position in the park, the good weather and the excellent response to both the colouring competition and literature being offered.

Perspectives of Christmas: Mary – 2nd December 2012

We had an encouraging start to our series taking place during December looking at different Perspectives of Christmas.

After spending most of yesterday morning clearing up the hall following the recent painting and laying of the new carpet, everything was in place in time for our opening carol service this evening.

Like last year, the series is being hosted by Phil Bray and each of the four weeks consists of a similar format with a mixture of carols, a quiz and a short talk.

Tonight the carols were ‘O little town of Bethlehem’, ‘Away in a manger’, ‘See Him a-lying on a bed of straw’ and ‘Unto us a child is born’.  We also enjoyed a debut performance from the Parkside Voices with Paul, Rachel and Judith singing their version of ‘Mary, did you know’?  The accompaniment was a mixture of piano playing from Paul mingling with guitars from Jon and Judith.

This year’s quiz consists of two teams – the Turkeys and the Crackers – each taking it in turns to remove a layer from a big parcel.  This reveals an envelope containing a number between 1 and 24 which then gives a question for the team.  The quiz  will run over the four weeks with the final prize being revealed on 23rd December.

The speaker for the opening service was Alan, who had the subject of Mary and spoke bringing out her blessed nature.

The service was followed by a selection of mince pies and other festive treats as well as a hot drink.

The second in the series takes place next Sunday at 4.30pm, when we’ll be looking at the story through the eyes of Joseph, told by Paul.