*** DEBUG START ***
*** DEBUG END ***

Give Wisbech a break (the C of E is trying to)

by
17 May 2013

iStock

From Mr Miles Pateman

Sir, - It was saddening to read (Diary, 3 May) yet more negative references to Wisbech, and this time in a national newspaper ("Wisbech-bashing" is usually confined to the local press).

Although the Revd Robert Mackley does illustrate his experience of dire sermonising well with "angrily explaining how many women you could buy with a used car in Wisbech", it does, sadly, reinforce a long-held (in many corners) stereotype of Wisbech.

It is true that Wisbech is easily the most deprived town in Ely diocese, and in one of the most deprived rural areas of England. It is a town in a long post-industrial malaise; but the Church of England is active in the town's regeneration - as in the project to engage art and theology in deprived rural communities, funded by the Archbishops' Council.

Wisbech is struggling against a dead weight of negative opinion (much of it, admittedly, propagated by Wisbechians themselves), but (I believe) this is slowly being overcome.

Finally, I would like to encourage Fr Mackley to visit Wisbech, to come to the flat northern extremity of the diocese. If he does, perhaps the next time he is invited to preach somewhere as a guest, he may have a message of hope from a town and its parish experiencing a resurrection rather than a town of "urban home-truths".

MILES PATEMAN
30 Ramnoth Road
Wisbech PE13 2JA

Letters to the editor

Letters for publication should be sent to letters@churchtimes.co.uk.

Letters should be exclusive to the Church Times, and include a full postal address. Your name and address will appear alongside your letter.

Train-a-Priest Fund 2022 Appeal

Please consider a donation to TAP Africa this year. Every penny you can give goes to ordinands in Africa who face financial difficulty, to support them as they complete their training. 

Donate online

Read more about this year's appeal

Forthcoming Events

2 July 2022
Bringing Down the Mighty: Church, Theology and Structural Injustice
With Anthony Reddie, Azariah France-Williams, Mariama Ifode-Blease, Luke Larner, Will Moore, Stewart Rapley and Victoria Turner.

4-8 July 2022
HeartEdge Mission Summer School
From HeartEdge and St Augustine’s College of Theology.

More events

Welcome to the Church Times

​To explore the Church Times website fully, please sign in or subscribe.

Non-subscribers can read four articles for free each month. (You will need to register.)