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St Helen's Press Release

published on 12th Jan 2018

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Escrick Parochial Church Council (PCC) is delighted to announce that their “Walking through the centuries with a Legless Knight” project  for St Helen’s Church is to receive a £471,000 grant from the Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF), thanks to National Lottery players.

With funding now secure, the project will carry out essential conservation work and create a heritage hub bringing to life the interwoven 800 year story of Escrick estate, village and church.

When refurbishing and re-ordering works are completed, the project’s Heritage Activity Plan will invite and encourage wider community involvement with opportunities for people to get involved, sharing and investigating stories, designing village trails and learning and developing new skills.  The hub will also be a valuable resource for individuals, local schools and interest groups.

St Helen’s is a focal point for the local community.  It was built 160 years ago – the anniversary of the consecration was celebrated in July 2017 – and cost £26,000 funded entirely by the Lawley family who were the Estate owners, and were the forebears of the Forbes Adam family who own the estate today.  Charlie Forbes Adam, the present head of the estate is the project’s enthusiastic Champion.  St Helen’s houses a unique array of high quality monuments commemorating ten generations of the land-owning family, many commissioned from renowned European artists, including Giovanni Tognoli, Bertel Thorvaldsen and Count Gleichen, together with Eric Gill and Fishers of York.

Most notable of all is probably the oldest monument, which is over 550 years older than the present Victorian building.  It is the legless stone effigy of a thirteenth century knight, thought to represent Roger de Lascelles, who was once ‘Lord of the Manor’.  Despite having lost his legs centuries ago, the effigy is acknowledged by the Church Monuments Society to be carved to a very high standard and the weathered details tell us much about the fashion of the time and the precise date when it was carved.

The HLF provides approximately 80% of the projected cost of the project, with the remaining partnership funding already secured from church resources and the much appreciated and vital support of the Friends of St Helen’s organisation.

Fundraising will continue as there are some works, such as external lighting, car park and cycle rack upgrading and porch room restoration which are not covered by present funds.  Most recently, a welcome donation from the Patricia and Donald Shepherd Charitable Trust has been received to go towards improving facilities for visitors with physical impairments.


Commenting on the HLF Grant, Project Team Leader and Churchwarden, Caroline Wandless said: 

“We are overjoyed that the Heritage Lottery Fund is going to make it possible for us to realise our long held wish to upgrade St Helen’s facilities, enhance the unique apsidal baptistery and create a versatile heritage hub to ensure a sustainable long term future.  We can now work with our professional team:  Lead Consultant, Jon Steel; Architect, Jamie Holden of Studio Tamacoco Architects and Heritage Engagement Officer, Michala Pearson to progress this marvellous project during 2018”.


The Rector of St Helen’s, Rev’d Richard Kirkman was equally jubilant: 

“This is wonderful news.  St Helen’s is open to welcome visitors every day and now the HLF grant will enable us to showcase our remarkable heritage and make the building more comfortable and versatile for both our core worship and for a more extensive range of events to appeal to a wider community.”


David Renwick, Head of HLF Yorkshire and the Humber said: 

“We are delighted to support this project, which, thanks to money raised by National Lottery players, will mean that more people will be able to get involved with, protect, and learn about the exciting heritage right on their doorstep.”


Members of the St Helen’s Project Team celebrate approval of the Heritage Lottery Fund grant.  They are: front row (l to r): Caroline Wandless, Churchwarden and Project Leader; Christine Mason, PCC Secretary; Rev’d Richard Kirkman, Rector of St Helen’s; back row: Judith Luscombe, Roger Wandless and Chris Mason.


The Project Team

The volunteers who make up the “Walking through the centuries with a Legless Knight” project are: Caroline Wandless, Churchwarden and Team Leader; Judith Luscombe; Chris Mason; Christine Mason, PCC Secretary; Steve Smith, Roger Wandless and John Wilson, PCC Treasurer.

About St Helen’s Church, Escrick

St Helen’s Parish Church of Escrick was built in 1857 and is a Grade II* Gothic Revival building.  The Architect was Francis Penrose, Surveyor of St Paul’s Cathedral and later President of the Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA).  It sits majestically at the side of the A19, half way between York and Selby.  The Church is in the Derwent Deanery within the Diocese of York.  The Church is available for all Parish residents for weddings, baptisms and funerals and provides a venue for concerts by local choirs who appreciate the natural acoustic of the building, art exhibitions and school visits.  St Helen’s generates opportunities for people to feel part of something special, with more than 60 people involved in various volunteering activities from cutting the Churchyard grass, cleaning, helping with fund raising events, flower arranging, editing and distributing the parish magazine to name but a few,  St Helen’s provides an enduring presence in the community, open to all, and offers a haven of tranquillity and stability in a busy world.

About the Heritage Lottery Fund

Thanks to National Lottery players, we invest money to help people across the UK explore, enjoy and protect the heritage they care about – from the archaeology under our feet to the historic parks and buildings we love, from precious memories and collections to rare wildlife.  Follow us on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram and use #HLFsupported.


Caroline Wandless – Churchwarden Tel: 07774 461026 or email: escrickchurch@gmail,com

or Chris Mason Tel: 01757 248039, mobile 07715 004346 or email:

Battle's over - 100 years of remembrance

published on 8th Jan 2018 (updated on 10th Jan 2018)

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Escrick is considering taking part in the Beacons of Light Tribute on 11th November to mark 100 years of remembrance.

Click here for more details

This is likely to consist of a brief gathering and lighting of a beacon.

We would like to gauge the level of interest in attending, please let any Parish Councillor know if you would be interested in attending.

Parish Magazine update - January 2018

published on 1st Jan 2018

The following appeared in January's Parish Magazine:

Escrick Parish Council

Parish Councillor vacancy: We still have a vacancy for a Parish Councillor - if you are interested, or would like to learn more about the role, please contact the Chair or Clerk (details below).

Village maintenance: Thank you to everyone who helped with the ‘Autumn Clean’ event in mid-November, your help was really appreciated. The Parish Council is also working with Selby District Council and North Yorkshire County Council to get several issues relating to pavements resolved. One area where residents could help, would be in ensuring that bushes/hedges do not overhang nor obstruct the pavements.

Budget/Precept: The Parish Council agreed to keep the precept for 2018/19 unchanged from 2017/18 levels. Details

Parish Council meeting dates: Monday 8th January, 5th February, 5th March. All meetings at 7.30pm at Escrick & Deighton Club. Public welcome.

Contact:  Chair (Richard Rowson),; Clerk (Helen Guest),; Website:

Queen Margaret's Burns Night Supper and Ceilidh

published on 18th Dec 2017

We invite you to join us for a QM Burns Night Supper & Ceilidh on Thursday 25 January...

We will start our celebrations with welcome drinks from 18:45 and a chance to chat with other guests prior to sitting down for supper in St Margaret's Chapel at 19:15.

The QM Catering Team will be pulling out all the stops to serve a delicious four course Burns Supper with the traditional dishes of Cullen Skink, Haggis, Neeps & Tatties, Aberdeen Angus and Cranachan. We will of course honour the tradition of 'addressing the haggis' and toasting with a wee dram of whisky.  After tea and coffee have been served the Aluinn Ceilidh band will strike up and encourage everyone to take to the dance floor. It doesn't matter if you don't know your Gay Gordons from your Flying Scotsman, help will be on hand - enthusiasm is more important than dancing expertise!

The evening is expected to finish around 22:30. Tickets for the event are £35 and this includes all drinks, including wine with the meal and the entertainment.  Proceeds from the evening will go to the QM Bursary Fund.

Parents, families and friends of QM  are all welcome to attend. To book your tickets please email

Waste and recycling collections over Christmas

published on 6th Dec 2017

Recycling box collections due on Monday 25 December will be brought forward to Saturday 23 December. 

Waste bin collections due on New Year’s Day (Monday 1 January) will take place on Saturday 6 January. 

Residents will be provided with an additional red refuse sack for their additional waste as they will go five additional days between collections. The red sacks are 90 litres in capacity which is almost half the capacity of a standard wheelie bin. 

In order to focus attention on collecting wrapping paper, present packaging, glass and tins, foil and all household plastics (apart from thin film), the Council will once again be suspending green waste collections from Monday 18 December, with collections restarting the week beginning Monday 15 January. 

North Yorkshire Streetlighting changes

published on 1st Dec 2017

North Yorkshire County Council will soon commence a programme of replacing their streetlights in the Selby District (including Escrick) with new LED lights. 

Low water pressure / no water - 12th Nov

published on 12th Nov 2017

Yorkshire water are aware of the lack of water supply / low pressure to parts of the village, and are working to restore supplies.

Damaged verge

published on 9th Nov 2017

The damaged verge on the A19 opposite the church has been reported and scheduled for repair.

Remembrance Sunday

published on 5th Nov 2017


Sunday 12th November - Remembrance Sunday

Escrick Church 

10.45am : Family Act of Remembrance

Led By Rev Richard Kirkman


6.30pm – Taize Service for Peace

Led By Rev Karen Gardiner

Quiet Reflection … with words, music and meditation


Parish Magazine update - November 2017

published on 1st Nov 2017

The following appeared in November's Parish Magazine

Escrick Parish Council

Parish Councillor vacancy: We still have a vacancy for a Parish Councillor - if you are interested, or would like to learn more about the role, please contact the Chair or Clerk (details below).

Quarry proposal: The Parish Council accepted an invite to visit Plasmor’s existing quarry at Hemingbrough to understand more about their plans for the proposed site west of the A19. The visit was helpful to understand the plans, but key concerns regarding traffic, and the risk of the site being used for landfill, remain. Plasmor advise that an application for planning permission is likely to be submitted in late in 2018, albeit some Councillors believe it may be sooner.

Grass cutting: The PC are seeking suppliers to undertake grass cutting of the village green, playing fields and verges - any potential suppliers are requested to contact for an information pack.

Local plans: Both York and Selby councils are consulting on their local plans. The latest version of the York plan has limited impact upon Escrick (having removed sites previously included adjacent to the village). The Selby plan includes potential housing sites in Escrick, but these may not be required due to a surplus of suitable sites. The planning working group will develop a response to the Selby consultation.

Carr Lane parking: Following complaints about dangerous parking on Carr Lane associated with school pick-up/drop-off, the police have confirmed that they will take enforcement action (fines of up to £1000, and 3 penalty points). They have written to all parents at the school and have been undertaking a mix of uniformed and plain-clothed visits.

Drains/sewage: Yorkshire water advise that fat blockages and a failed pumped were the cause of recent sewage leaks. They advise that the problem has been resolved and that they will be undertaking regular inspections to try to prevent a reoccurrence.

Village maintenance: The PC is coordinating an “Autumn Clean” on Saturday 11th November in the afternoon. See separate notice.

Parish Council meeting dates: Monday 6th November, 4th December, 8th January, 5th February. All meetings at 7.30pm at Escrick & Deighton Club. Public welcome.

Contact:  Chair (Richard Rowson),; Clerk (Helen Guest),; Website:

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