Farewell to much-loved vicar

The Rev Martin Lowles with Susan Norville and Pat Trueman.
The Rev Martin Lowles with Susan Norville and Pat Trueman.

PARISHIONERS said a fond farewell to their vicar who has hung up his robes for the last time.

The Rev Martin Lowles, vicar of St Paul’s in Birkenshaw, and its daughter church St Luke’s in East Bierley, has decided to retire.

St Paul’s was packed for his last service on Sunday as people came from his previous parishes and all local churches, as well as representives from the schools, the fire service and the council. The service of communion had traditional and modern hymns and Martin spoke of his calling to the ministry, his parish experiences and his family’s move to the frozen north!

He said: “Six and a half years is not long when it comes to pastoral ministry but if in some small way I have been able to contribute to the life and mission of the churches here, then it has been an absolute honour. I am looking forward to getting evenings and weekends back and spending quality time with the family. But I will miss everyone very much.”

After the service there were refreshments and churchwardens presented him with a leaving gift. He is pictured with Susan Norville and Pat Trueman.

Picture courtesy Tony Bannister.