For this week’s film in our year long campaign to tell the story of our rich and varied life here in the Diocese of Leeds, we followed the Church About the Dale ecumenical trailer taking welfare and worship to some of the further reaches of our diocese.
It is this vision of welfare and worship that saw the Anglican churches in the Deanery of Wesley and the local Methodist chapels come together to source, fund and plan to get a mobile church trailer on the road.
It took 18 months but in August 2015, it was launched with a service of blessing from Ripon Cathedral before making its own pilgrimage through Wensleydale taking faith on the road and providing active support to isolated areas of the Dale.
Since that time it has been a regular feature at local agricultural shows including the Gargrave Show and the Wensleydale Show, in market places and every August Bank Holiday, it can be found beside Semerwater for a special lakeside service.
The Revd Chris Lawton who looks after six parishes between Leyburn and Bedale, said: “We wanted to reach out to people and to those in need in this isolated rural community by taking the trailer out into the market places, onto the showfields and be able to signpost people to food banks, debt relief, farm crisis, suicide prevention helplines; helping those most in need and proclaiming the Good News of Jesus Christ.”