Coronavirus Updates

On this page we will keep you updated with how the Coronavirus is affecting the activities and lives of the community of Walton Evangelical Church…

Monday 19th July 2021
The government lifted all legal restrictions on what we can or cannot do in church with regards to COVID-19 on Monday 19th July 2021. From that point on it is the role of the Church Elders to make decisions about how services will change from Sunday 25th July onwards. We want to keep everyone safe, whilst at the same time conducting services that are honourable to God and beneficial to His people.

If you show any of the symptoms for COVID-19 then we would ask that you remain away from Church until the end of your isolation period. Please let us know if you test positive for COVID-19.

We will continue to use both the main Church and the activity hall so that we can keep spacing between groups of seats at a maximum. There will be enough seating for everyone to attend. During our services, we will now be able to sing. However, to mitigate the risks (for this next period of time) we are asking that people continue to wear masks throughout the formal part of the service.

Two scientific studies on singing helped us shape our decision-making process. Quotes include “church or other non-professional choirs may sing with masks for the preventive effect.” and “When the singers were wearing a simple face mask this caught most of the aerosols and droplets and the levels were comparable with ordinary speech,”.

Further details on the studies into singing can be found here…
https://healthcare-in-europe.com/en/news/singing-in-times-of-covid-19.html
https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2020/09/200908101621.htm

In the best interests of everyone at Church we would kindly ask that you continue to wear your mask during your time at Church. You will be able to remove your mask for the time of refreshments after the morning service.

As Elders we think this is a safe way to proceed because although Covid cases are increasing rapidly and are likely to do so for a while as the rules are relaxed the vaccine has made a huge impact – very few people are dying of covid19, especially amongst those who have been double vaccinated. When looking at data graphs, the full impact of the vaccine can be appreciated – this is what has given the government confidence to make the changes it has. Since March, the 5-year average for deaths in the UK has been lower than expected: 12000 less deaths have occurred in that period than you would have expected before Covid started. What is more the pressure on the NHS is also far lower, compared to previous spikes.

All of this of course, depends on how the data might change in the coming weeks, so rest assured that we will be keeping a close eye on data graphs and making changes accordingly. Whatever your views on the current situation and these changes we would ask you to be patient. All of this presents us with an opportunity to live out the truths of the gospel by bearing with and loving those that we disagree with.

Wednesday 19th May 2021
England moved into Step 3 of the COVID-19 roadmap on Monday 17th May. Updated church COVID-19 guidance has been issued which means we can do things differently. The following guidance is still in place:
• Wearing face coverings indoor is a legal requirement unless you have an exemption.
• Sanitizing hands as we arrive and then leave.
• No congregational singing.

There are two big changes:
• We can sit in groups of six or two households.
• Everyone except those who were/are “extremely clinically vulnerable” take the same precautions. Those who are “extremely clinically vulnerable” should take more care to keep socially distanced – the specific guidance on this is very general. If you are in this category you will have received an NHS notification.

Based on groups of six or two households the building can hold around 130 people. A 2m social distancing rule applies between each group.

9:00am Service will continue until further notice for those who would feel more comfortable being in the building with smaller numbers.
11:00am Service is now open to any age who would like to attend. This service will have Sunday School and will continue to be Live Streamed on Facebook.
6pm Service is also now open to any age who would like to attend.
Please let us know via the Church Office if you’d like to attend. Please be aware that these new arrangements might mean that you are allocated a seat next to someone from another household at the 11am & 6pm services. Please contact us if you’d prefer for this not to happen.

Wednesday 2nd December 2020
In all that we plan for Church we have followed the most recent COVID-19 Government Guidance for “places of worship”.
– 9am Morning Service – For over 70s and for the clinically / extremely clinically vulnerable. If anyone in a household is over 70 then you fall into this category.
– 11am Morning Service – This is for under 70s only. This service will continue to be streamed live. There will be Sunday School available during this service.
– 6pm Evening services – This is planned to be for under 70s only. The sermon will be recorded and made available online later.
– To comply with Social Distancing guidance:
o There will be no congregational singing.
o No refreshments after the service.
o You must sanitize your hands on arrival and departure and wear a face covering in the building (unless you have an appropriate exemption);
o Maintain 2m from others.

Sunday 1st November 2020
In light of the announcement by the government we have had to make the difficult decision that during the second national lockdown that all services and activities at Walton Church will be cancelled. For the duration of the lockdown we will stream a single service at 11am.

Friday 11th September 2020
We have followed the most recent COVID-19 Government Guidance for “places of worship” in drawing up our plans, including a risk assessment. This will define the social distancing controls we employ. We have also looked at other guidance related to it as well as the most up to date general guidance limiting groups to 6.

The summary of our ‘return to church’ letter is detailed below or you can click here to download the entire letter (pdf).

– We will not be able to have everyone back into the building but will continue to provide the live internet broadcast of the morning service for anyone who does not wish to attend.
– The first service back in the building is planned from Sunday September 20th at 11:00am (note the new time). This is planned to be for under 70s only. This service will continue to be streamed live.
– There will be Sunday School available from the Sunday September 20th 11:00am service onwards. All schools have now returned.
– A new early morning service back in the building is planned from Sunday October 4th at 09:00am to 10:00am. This is planned to be for over 70s and for the clinically / extremely clinically vulnerable. If anyone in a household is over 70 then you fall into this category.
– Sunday Evening services are planned to commence on Sunday October 18th 18:30. Due to limited resources this will not be broadcast, and no provision will be made for over 70s or for the clinically vulnerable. The sermon will, however, be recorded and made available online later.
– To comply with Social Distancing guidance:
o There will be no congregational singing.
o No refreshments after the service.
o You must sanitize your hands on arrival and departure and wear a face covering in the building (unless you have an appropriate exemption);
o Maintain 2m from others.
– This is the plan but may need to be changed based on government guidance or our needs.
If there are any changes, we will communicate them to you as soon as we reasonably can.

Friday 27th March 2020
Following government advice for all people to stay at home wherever possible we have decided as a Church that we are to stop all of our meetings completely including our Sunday morning and evening services. We will be working hard to live stream and record and upload messages where we can. This Sunday morning a few folks have been asked to facilitate the streaming of song, prayer and sermon to YouTube. This will take place at 10:30am. We also plan to record the sermon and upload it to our website, YouTube and Facebook immediately afterwards. If you have not been asked to help then we ask you to please stay at home and watch online.

Please continue to follow the government guidelines regarding the Coronavirus. Please wash your hands carefully. Please stay at home as guided and if you are out then please maintain social distancing. Please self isolate if you suffer from a new, dry, and persistent cough or a fever of 37.8 degrees. Current self-isolation guidelines are for 7 days if you live alone or 14 days for your whole household if someone in your family shows these symptoms. If you are aged 70 or over, or are vulnerable we would ask you to also self-isolate during this time. Please contact us if we can help in any way. We continue to pray for our community, country and world at this very difficult time.

Saturday 21st March 2020
Following government rulings schools across the UK have now closed (for the majority of students). We have considered our response as a church and decided that we are to stop all of our meetings completely including our morning and evening services on a Sunday. This was obviously a very difficult decision to make, but the best one in the current situation. We will be working hard to live stream and record and upload messages where we can. This Sunday morning a few folks have been asked to facilitate the streaming of song, prayer and sermon to Facebook. This will take place at 10:30am. We also plan to record the sermon and upload it to our website, YouTube and Facebook immediately afterwards. If you have not been asked to help then we ask you to please stay at home and watch online. We are already working on what is best for future weeks where we hope to live stream to both Facebook and YouTube.

Please continue to follow the government guidelines regarding the Coronavirus. Please wash your hands carefully and maintain social distancing. Please self isolate if you suffer from a new, dry, and persistent cough or a fever of 37.8 degrees. Current self-isolation guidelines are for 7 days if you live alone or 14 days for your whole household if someone in your family shows these symptoms. If you are aged 70 or over, or are vulnerable we would ask you to also self-isolate during this time. Please contact us if we can help in any way. We continue to pray for our community, country and world at this very difficult time.

Wednesday 18th March 2020
Today brought the news from the government that due to the continuing Coronavirus pandemic schools will close this Friday [20th March 2020] (for the majority of students) until further notice. Following this statement we are needing to amend what events and activities are taking place at Walton Church. From tonight all events (except our Sunday Morning Service) will be cancelled. We plan to record the sermon from the morning service and upload it to our website, YouTube and Facebook immediately after the service. We will obviously make further adjustments when directed or as required. We are obviously really sad to make these decisions, but it is only right due to the wider situation of the Coronavirus.

During this time of uncertainty we would ask everyone to continue to follow the government guidelines regarding the Coronavirus. Please ensure you wash your hands carefully, avoid shaking hands and please self isolate if you suffer from a new, dry, and persistent cough or a fever of 37.8 degrees. Current self-isolation guidelines are for 7 days if you live alone or 14 days for your whole household if someone in your family shows these symptoms. We would ask that you stay at home if you are showing any symptoms so we can protect and care for any who are elderly or vulnerable. If you are aged 70 or over, or are vulnerable we would ask you to also self-isolate during this time. Please contact us if we can help in any way. We continue to pray for our community, country and world at this very difficult time.

Monday 16th March 2020
Unfortunately we have made the very sad decision to cancel our ‘Space Academy Holiday Club’. It is hoped we can rearrange this for later in the year. In order to help protect the vulnerable in our community we have also taken the decision to temporarily postpone some of our activities. We’re sorry for any inconvenience this may cause.
For the months of April and May we have also postponed the following activities…
– Focus
– Cream Tea
– The Way
– Fellowship Lunches
– Let’s Create Art Group
During this time of uncertainty we would ask everyone to follow the current government guidelines regarding the Coronavirus. Please ensure you wash your hands carefully, avoid shaking hands and please self isolate if you suffer from a new, dry, and persistent cough or a fever of 37.8 degrees. Current self-isolation guidelines are for 7 days if you live alone or 14 days for your whole household if someone in your family shows these symptoms. We would ask that you stay at home if you are showing any symptoms so we can protect and care for any who are elderly or vulnerable. Please contact us if we can help in any way. We continue to pray for our community, country and world at this very difficult time.

Sunday 15th March 2020
In order to help protect the vulnerable in our community we have today taken the difficult decision to temporarily postpone some of our activities. We’re sorry for any inconvenience this may cause. For the months of April and May we have postponed the following activities…
– Focus
– Cream Tea
– The Way
– Fellowship Lunches
During this time of uncertainty we would ask everyone to follow the current government guidelines regarding the Coronavirus. Please ensure you wash your hands carefully, avoid shaking hands and please self isolate if you suffer from a new, dry, and persistent cough or a fever of 37.8 degrees. We would ask that you stay at home if you are showing any symptoms so we can protect and care for any who are elderly or vulnerable. Please contact us if we can help in any way. We continue to pray for our community, country and world at this very difficult time.

Saturday 14th March 2020
All services and activities at Walton Church are currently still running. During this time of uncertainty we would ask everyone to follow the current government guidelines regarding the Coronavirus. Please ensure you wash your hands carefully, avoid shaking hands and please self isolate if you suffer from a new, dry, and persistent cough or a fever of 37.8 degrees. We would ask that you stay at home if you are showing any symptoms so we can protect and care for any who are elderly or vulnerable. Please contact us if we can help in any way. We continue to pray for our community, country and world at this very difficult time.