St John And St Petroc Church Devoran - a Memory of Devoran.

My memory spans several years relating to the church. My grandfather, Fred James, who lived in Carnon Downs, cared for the grounds and the older graves in the churchyard, mainly on a Saturday, and, during the winter, he cycled to Devoran on a Saturday evening to light the 'coke' fires for the boiler, for the heating system in the church. I can't remember how old I was when he first took me with him to help cut the grass, weed the paths and trim around the old graves, but I remember helping him over several years. The grassed areas were, of course, cut with a push grass mower, which needed sharpening quite often. It always seemed to be lovely sunny weather..or is that just my memory? haha. Between the old graves shown in this photo, used to grow wild strawberries, which were really lovely on a hot sunny day. My gran, Dorothy James, used to clean the vicarage, and would sometimes go to the corner shop opposite the church, on a Saturday lunchtime, to buy a bottle of Corona (always dandelion and burdock) and bring it to us hard working guys in the churchyard. I also joined the church choir for a few years, until just after my voice broke, so attended morning service and evensong, and the occasional wedding. The vicar during my time there was Rev. Conrad Meyer, a very caring and friendly vicar, who was quite a modern vicar for that time. His wife Mary, presented me with a 'Common book of prayers' on my 10th birthday, which I still have, and she has written a short dedication to me on the inside. I also have a 'Hymns ancient and modern' book that the Rev Meyer presented to me for Lent 1960, with a small dedication inside. Being such a forward thinking vicar, I was surprised to hear later in my life, that he had converted to Catholic, because he was against female vicars.
My gran and grandad are buried in the churchyard, behind and to the right of the photographer of this photograph.
I have really lovely memories of the church, the vicar, the churchyard and the choir, which has brought a smile to my face just thinking about them.


A memory shared by Philip James on Oct 4th, 2012.
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