New user? Register here:
Email Address:
Retype Password:
First Name:
Last Name:
Existing user? Login here:
News >

Cathedrals to lose young helpers

CATHEDRAL CAMPS, which for 25 years have given young people the chance twork on historic buildings in the UK, will cease after this summer, it warevealed this week.Red tape and student debts - young people now have to work for most of thsummer - are to blame, say organisers, who admit the decision was made "witsadness, but in good heart".More than 10,000 young people from all over the world have worked ocathedral camps, which have been held up and down the country in botcathedrals and major parish churches.This year camps are being held at eight cathedrals, including Canterbury anDurham, and seven churches.Speaking on Tuesday, the Very Revd Richard Lewis, former Dean of Bath &Wells and chairman of the Cathedral Camps charity said: "We feel reconciled tthe fact that we have to close."Dean Lewis said that, over the past 25 years, the whole culture had changedwith a renewed emphasis on health and safety, which made it difficult to carrout a range of activities that had previously been associated with the campsHe said that the regulations and risk assessment meant an increase in costfor insurance and training. But the demands of meeting university fees had alsmeant a decrease in those applying for the camps.Finding accommodation, too, was becoming a problem: schools attached tcathedrals increasingly let out their accommodation during the summer."There are just so many restrictions now, including the fact that if yoclimb more than two metres up a ladder you have to wear a safety harness. As result, a lot of excitement in this work has gone. Cathedral Camps were ainspirational and informative experience for young people."From the cathedrals' point of view, he said, it was a serious loss. Thvolunteers carried out vital work that otherwise got overlooked."Speaking as a Dean, I would say that the camps  were invaluable, nojust for the experience they gave the young people, but for the cathedraitself. They covered that range of 'wouldn't-it-be-nice-to-do' jobs that woulnormally never get done."He said that last year he had visited a number of cathedral camps. AWorcester, campers were polishing medieval bones found on an archaeologicadig; at Exeter, the young volunteers polished the diamond windows.During the 25 years, 511 camps have taken place, with more than 130leaders. Volunteers contribute 85 for the week, to which the charity adds morthan 175 a week to cover the cost of each young person. Dean Lewis informed the 2006 leaders by letter this week that this would bthe last year.

Job of the week

Chaplain - Development

West Midlands

VACANCY ADVERTISEMENT CHAPLAIN - DEVELOPMENT 18.75 HOURS PER WEEK The Pastoral Care Team at The Myton Hospices is committed to the provision of spiritual care across the organisation and deliveri...  Read More

Signup for job alerts
Top feature

The lighter side of fund-raising

The lighter side of fund-raising

Maggie Durran reviews entries to a competition to find the best fund-raising ideas  Read More

Question of the week
Would you like to see religious ads at the cinema?

To prevent multiple voting, we now ask readers to be logged in. This is free, quick and easy, honestly. Click here to login or register

Top comment

Questions to weigh before bombing

Just-war theory can guide MPs in these decisions, says Paul Vallely  Subscribe to read more

Fri 27 Nov 15 @ 21:00
Global poll shows that vast majority of Muslims despise Islamic State

Fri 27 Nov 15 @ 20:45
RT @GraceREThomasFab interview on the back page of @ChurchTimes this week with a couple who have fostered over 60 children. What a gift all #FosterCarers are