YOU may have read in this paper the official notification about plans for St Andrews Methodist and United Reformed Church in New market Street, Skipton to up-sticks and become one new Church with the congregation of Trinity Methodist Church worshipping in Westmoreland Street.

After much thought, discussion, consultation, and prayer a meeting was called to consider the recommendation. The decision to make preparations in advance of a final vote being taken had the overwhelming support of those members who were interested enough to attend. But nothing will happen quickly.

I write about this in a personal capacity, not necessarily representing the views of the Church or its leaders.

There will be many in the community who decry the abandonment of buildings with which they have family connections and special memories. those memories will remain in the heart.

For others, St Andrews Hall especially, is their community hub, providing a place where a wide variety of needs are met and activities take place. A community hub needs to be owned and run by a community group.

Assets which once enabled the passing on of the Christian faith to the next generation have increasingly become a millstone, limiting what the Church can do in fulfilling its purposes for today.

Some of the current activities could be transferred to Trinity but not all, and only after much thought and discussion. It will be a wrench for those who have made St Andrews their home for many years to have to find an alternative.

Trinity will continue to be a safe and warm place where everyone will find a welcome, and for those that seek him, the Living God. Sharing the great love of Jesus for this world and all people will continue to be our priority.

Rev Peter Bedford (retired)