Tuesday, 24 January 2012

Save Your Church Money

Did that get your attention?

The Church of England spends over £200million a year on operating costs - electricity, gas, oil, printing paper...the list is endless. Parishes usually struggle to find the best deal they can but we are all doing it separately. In these demanding financial times, the National Procurement Officer has done some work to find out just what parishes in the 42 dioceses are spending money on regularly and to facilitate some joined up negotiating for favourable deals from approved suppliers. The result? An online parish buying service which will be launched on 30th January 2012. It's so obvious we will all be asking, 'Why didn't we do this sooner?' Visit the site now and find out how your church can steward its resources more effectively. Make sure you tell your church treasurer!

Ordering through this site may save you time as well as money. The categories of product covered initially will be energy, office products, photocopying, IT soft ware and fire safety. There are also some helpful 'buying guidelines' if parishes would prefer to source things themselves, locally. A big thank you to Russell Stables, the National Procurement Officer, and his team.

And  you will see on the website, in 2012 there will be training sessions 
  • 20 Ways to Save your Parish Money
  • Cost Control Training for Parishes Embarking on Major Capital Projects.

Beat Your Swords to Ploughshares!

St Andrew's Kirkby Malzeard
Plough Sunday 2012

Plough Sunday ushers in the start of the farming year. At St Andrew's Kirkby Malzeard we marked Plough Sunday last week. This annual service is a celebration of the work of farmers and an opportunity to pray with them for the work that they do. A plough is blessed, prayers are said for the cycle of preparation, growth and harvesting, and the community comes together to commit their work to God and to remember that farmers are co-operating in God's work of sustaining the created order. It was a turly joyful occasion. The church was packed, there was a full choir, we welcomed the Mayor of Harrogate, Councillor Les Ellington and Mrs Ellington, and the Highside Longswords danced, using traditional steps and music which are unique to the village of Kirkby Malzeard. Over coffee, as well as meeting lots people from St Andrew's and the local community, I spoke to visitors who had come specially from as far away as Wakefield and York. As someone said, 'Rowan Atkinson ought to see the church in action like this!' A big thank you to everyone who took part - and also for the lovely lunch, afterwards. The Plough Sunday address can be read on my 'sermons' page.   

Read about the Highside Longswords on

Every good and perfect gift comes from you, O Lord.
For fertile soil, for the smell of newly-turned earth,
We give you thanks, O Lord.
For keen, cold, frosty winter days and nights,
We give you thanks, O Lord.
For the tractor's hum and the gleam of a cutting edge
We give you thanks, O Lord.
For the beauty of a clean-cut furrow and the sweep of a well-ploughed field,
We give you thanks, O Lord.
Blessed are you, Lord, for all your gifts to us.

Tuesday, 17 January 2012

Calling All Prayer Book fans

Archbishop Thomas Cranmer

In my days as a liturgy (theology of worship) lecturer, one of the modules I taught every year was the module on the liturgies of the Reformation. Each Lent term we re-enacted the Sarum Rite in Latin, contrasted it with Calvin's Lord's Supper and then ploughed our way through Cranmer's 1549, 1552 and 1559 versions of Holy Communion. As a result I came to rediscover and utterly to love the Prayer Book service of Holy Communion which lingered in my earliest childhood memories. The Church in Wales (we lived in South Wales) first revised its Prayer Book in 1968, long before the Church of England, and so the last time I remembered using Cranmer's service regularly was when I was 9. The cadences of the language had stayed with me, but the discovery of the theology of the Prayer Book and the journey which led to it was something that really captured my imagination and it was always a joy to explore it with the students. (I hope some of them felt the same way!)  We Anglicans always say that the basis of our theology is worked out in our liturgy and certainly, it is to the Prayer Book I would turn if someone asked me to explain why I am an Anglican.

2012 is, of course, the 350th Anniversary of the Book of Common Prayer. The British Academy is hosting a major event to celebrate, with a series of reflections that will bring together leading scholars from theological, liturgical and eccleioslogical disciplines. Supported by the Prayer Book Society and Hymns Ancient and Modern, the symposium will take place on 28th march 2012, 10.45am - 5.15pm at the British Academy, London SW1Y 5AH, and is followed by a drinks reception. If you would like to go, you can book on


I very much hope it will lead to a publication so if you can't get there, watch out for subsequent news on their site. 

Pepping Up Your Preaching

Thinking about my address for next Sunday's Plough Service at Kirkby Malzeard, as I am, my interest was caught by a website called 'Roots.' Actually it turned out to be absolutely nothing to do with ploughing but it was interesting! It turns out that this organisation, recommended by Bob Fyffe, the General Secretary of Churches Together in Britain and Ireland, is dedicated to producing good, flexible resources for preachers and worship leaders. It is designed for use with the Revised Common Lectionary (the calendar of biblical readings which churches use throughout the year and which help to ensure we have seasonally appropriate readings while also covering a broad range texts from the bible on a three year cycle.)  

The Roots partnership brings together writers from a range of churches and other socially active Christian organisations. All the writers are experienced worship leaders, teachers and preachers. The materials produced are for adult worship, all age worship and work with young people and children. They aim to 'help grow disciples of every age.'  Martyn Atkins, General Secretary of the Methodist Church says, 'Over the past ten years Roots has gone from strength to strength, continually flexing to adapt to the needs of a changing church while ensuring a strong lectionary-based focus.' They bring out two magazines every other month - one with fresh ideas for adult and family worship and the other with ideas to use when working with children and young people in all kinds of situations, worshipping, studying, having fun. The adult version includes bible notes and theological reflections designed to help with preaching.

Visit their website on http://www.rootsontheweb.com/

Oh! and do come to the Plough Service at St Andrew's Kikby Malzeard at 10.30am on Sunday Morning 22nd January!

Alastair Thompson

Canon Alastair Thompson

We are all deeply shocked and saddened to hear of the sudden and unexpected death of Alastair Thompson. Alastair had been chair of the Diocesan Board of Finance since 2003 (and a member since 1993) and was a Canon of Ripon Cathedral. He unstintingly served the Diocese of Ripon and Leeds in so many ways and on a great number of committees. Above all, many of us in the diocese knew him as 'the man who could make finance understandable.' Members of the Diocesan Board of Finance, the Diocesan Synod and the Cathedral community will often have heard him offer concise and lucid explanations of complicated figures. He unfailingly enabled debate and always took seriously the questions of everyone present, no matter how complex or how simple. He always said, 'I can produce the evidence for that!' and he did! We have much to thank Alastair for. His wise guidance has enabled us to manage our funds and inspire generous giving to great effect. His own example in the positive and careful stewardship of money enabled the Dioceasan Board of Finance to make sound decisions about how it organises and manages the finances of the diocese. With a sure hand, he guided us in keeping our finances on a secure footing so that they support our mission and enable the work of the whole diocese. He was always committed to ensuring that the bishop could deploy his full quota of parish clergy.

Alastair was generous with his time, encouraging to all with whom he came into contact, knowledgeable about so many things and always good to work with. He was good company whether as a dinner companion or a fellow worker, whether you were 89 or 9. I will remember him as quintessentially a Yorkshireman with a twinkle in his eye, proud of his roots, and always ready to make a contribution to whatever he found to be worthwhile. He supported many organisations and charities. The last time I saw him, he was telling me about the work of the Friends of the Leukaemia Unit in Leeds - it was only after the conversation ended that I discovered from someone else that he chaired the group. This was typical of Alastair.

We shall miss him very much. We have every reason to be deeply grateful to him; he inspired us in the Christian stewardship of not just money, but life, and he lived his life fully to the very end. Our thoughts, deepest prayers and sympathy go to his family. His funeral will be on Wednesday 25th January at 12.30pm at his parish church, St Giles, Bramhope, in Leeds. 

You can read more at http://www.riponleeds.anglican.org/press-434.html  

Monday, 9 January 2012

Choral Tradition at St Mary's Richmond

On Sunday morning the choir at St Mary's Richmond were second to none! They gave quite the best rendering of William Boyce's Examine Me that I have ever heard.

(not St Mary's but the only youtube recording I can find!)

St Mary's has a well established choral tradition and 5 of its members have been awarded the RSCM Gold Medal - an award made to only 30 singers each year. This perhaps gives you some idea of what they are capable of. The choristers are aged 6-18 and they are a lively, engaging group who happily chat away about sport and art and holidays and hair dressing courses they are taking, yet, at a moment's notice, are capable of depths of concentration and musical discipline most of us would find out of our reach. Colin Hicks, the Organist and Music Director clearly knows how to train and inspire - and also how to make the Harrison and Harrison organ (one of the best in any parish church in the country) the true servant of each genre of music, producing a wide and subtle range of sounds. The choir look and sound as though they are loving every moment of it and so, of course, this lifts the worship and the spirits of the worshipper. 

Ruth Gedye Window, Richmond St Mary
Artist Alan Davis

After the service, which included an interesting and thoughtful sermon by reader, Joy Hornsby, I spoke to one parent who was telling me that all her children had been in the choir - actually starting at another church and then transfering to Richmond. It had been a wonderful start for them all, helping their confidence, allowing them to make friends and travel and, in one case, leading on to a career. As you wander round the church there is also visible evidence of the central place that music has played in the life of young people in Richmond. Ruth Gedye sang with the choir from age 8; sadly, when she was 18, she died from Leukaemia.  A glorious window has been designed and dedicated in her memory; the artist is Alan David of Lythe, Whitby and the inspiration for the window came from Ruth's favoutrite anthem, O Thou the Central Orb (music by Charles Wood and lyrics by Henry Ramsden Bramley.) 


Ruth Gedye Window, Richmond St Mary
Artist Alan Davis, detail

O thou the central orb of righteous love,
Pure beam of the most High, Eternal light of this our wintry world.
Thy radiance bright awakes new joy in faith, Hope soars above.
Come quickly come and let Thy glory shine, gilding
our darksome heaven with rays divine.
Thy saints with holy lustre round Thee move as stars about
Thy throne, set in the height of God's ordaining counsel
as Thy sight gives measur'd grace to each, Thy power to prove.
Let Thy bright beams disperse the gloom of sin.
Our nature all shall feel eternal day. In fellowship with thee,
transforming day to souls erewhile unclean, now pure within.

Ruth Gedye Window, Richmond St Mary
Artist Alan Davis, detail

Thank you, St Mary's Richmond, for an uplifting  Epiphany Sunday and for the choral tradition which inspires us all year round and which can be enjoyed by young and old, storing up for us experiences and memories, texts and images, music and friends that see us through a life time.

Ruth Gedye Window, Richmond St Mary
Artist Alan Davis, detail
with Bamburgh Castle

Ruth Gedye Window, Richmond St Mary
Artist Alan Davis, detail

Saturday, 7 January 2012

Buckets of Inspiration

Since working on a haematology unit thirty years ago where most of our patients had leukaemia, myeloma or lymphoma, I've always taken an interest in the Leukaemia Research Society which does cutting edge research into blood cancers. So I was really inspired to come across a blog called 'Alice's Bucket List'. Alice is 16, lives in Ulverston in Cumbria and and suffers from Hodgkin's Lymphoma. She writes that she doesn't seem to be winning the battle with her cancer. A bucket list is what she decided to make for herself - a list of things she wants to do 'before she kicks the bucket'. She says some of them will just always remain dreams, but others she has already achieved. Top of her list is her desire to get everyone eligible to join a bone marrow register. Her blog is heart warming and inspirational. Do have a read and go onto the links to the various bone marrow registers which she gives.

You have to be between 18 and 49 to join the British bone marrow register. A bone marrow transplant can restore someone who suffers from a blood cancer to full, long lasting health, but the marrow of donor and recipient has to be extremely carefully matched. If you are a regular blood donor, you can ask about joining the register at your next donor session. Or you can apply to join online. Bone marrow donation can be done in one of two ways - the first does not even require a general anaesthetic and neither requires surgery. The marrow is either taken from the general blood circulation or from the hip bone under a general anaesthetic. 

Unfortunately, I'm too old to donate marrow, but I wish I could help Alice make one of her dreams come true. Bone marrow transplant is still a pretty radical procedure, but it transforms the lives of many very sick people of all ages from children to quite elderly and the gift can be given so simply. 

The British Bone Marrow Registry

And PS! Another unsung service that many of our military personnel give is the regular donation of blood and marrow to specialist haematology units. Because they all know their blood group, they often fulfil a valuable role in being willing to supply white cells, platelets and other blood products for patients with rare blood groups. 

Life Sciences Teach Us About Growth

Some more good news! The Life Sciences industry (mainly focused on the creation and refinement of therpeutic drugs) is one area where Britain still makes a really major contribution to the world scene. We have four of the world's top 10 universities and there are welcome signs that the number of students studying physical chemistry is increasing. Indeed, it has been the International Year of Chemistry in 2011 and (unlike the Decade of Evangelism when church attendance actually fell!) there has been an increase in the number of students reading chemistry at university and there are plans to open two new chemistry departments at Lancaster and Kings, London. Since 2005, there has been a 25% increase in the number of students taking A level chemistry.

The science community must be pleased with the government's anouncement that there will be an extra £180m to fund processes which support getting the drugs from early stage development to clinical use (an area known by those in the profession, somewhat unfortunately, as the 'Valley of Death' because promising projects disappear into clincal trials never to see the light of day.) This is tied up with slightly more controversial plans to allow registered health care companies to access NHS patient records to support their research.  The 4,000 UK life science companies who could benefit will be able to enhance their contribution both to new treatments for a number of diseases and to overall economic growth, so this seems like a win win package. 

My husband's company releases employees to spend days teaching science in local schools and these days are always greeted with much enthusiasm by pupils and staff alike. They are also hugely enjoyed, it goes with out saying, by those released from workaday drudgery to be real 'mad scientists' under the attentive gaze of a class for the day! We need young people to study pure science subjects in order (among other things) to create the next generation of applied scientists.

It struck me that theologians ought to think along similar lines. Religious studies and
theology are valuable in so many ways apart from simply being of interest to those with a faith or the few intending to become ministers and priests. The study of theology opens a student up to history, philosophy, ethics, linguistics, sociology, psychology, art, music and textual criticism. One of my university colleagues once remarked that he was amazed that theologians seemed to have the capacity to be in dialogue with (and often teaching courses in partnership with) almost any other discipline in the university. The skills learned through studying for a theology degree can be used in so many ways.

Taking a leaf out of the scientists' approach to generating fresh interest in their subjects, we ought to be releasing our best theologians (and in this, I would include some clergy and readers) for days to help with the teaching of religious studies and other subjects in schools. In my last parish I used to help teach the A level philosophy modules in a local comprehensive; there were always a dozen or so students and I met some inspirational young people and learned a huge amount myself. Most importantly, I struck up some relationships that have lasted beyond the classroom as I've followed the students' progress into theology and philosophy courses and all sorts of related areas of study.  

Thursday, 5 January 2012

Assisted Suicide

The rather official sounding Commission on Assisted Dying was set up by a group of campaigners. Funded by Sir Terry Pratchett and chaired by Lord Falconer, a barrister and former Justice Minister, it has taken evidence from 1,300 sources during a year long enquiry. Its critics claim that it did not start from a neutral point, however, and was biased toward a change in the law. Unsurprisingly, its findings are that the law should be altered to allow assisted suicide under certain very strict conditions
  • the person must be terminally ill and judged to have less than a year to live
  • two indepenedent doctors must agree
  • the person must be over 18 and of sound mind
  • the person must be able to demonstrate that suicide is a voluntary decision on their part.
You can read more about the Commission's recommendations and reactions to them on

All very difficult yet fairly predictable, I think. The aspect of the argument that seems to have been overlooked in most of the reports I've listened to today is this: to allow assisted suicide is not something that affects only the individuals who are faced with a very, very difficult choice about whether to end their own lives. If we change the law to allow assisted suicide, people will be needed to organise the means of suicide and, probably, institutions will arise whose business it is to make suicide possible. Who will these people be? Will doctors, nurses and pharmacists take on the preparation of suicide drugs as part of their everyday work? Once the preparation of such drugs is allowed, it will only be a small step to the plea for someone to administer them in cases where the dying person cannot do this for themselves. This changes society's entire relationship with the medical and health care professions and is in danger of diminishing the trust we would feel able to put in any institution, such as a hospice or nursing home, which decided to adopt assisted suicide as an option for its patients. (You can image, 25 years down the line, protocols where staff have to ask the question, 'Would you like to discuss suicide?')

Much of the argument today has been based around the perceived and strongly articulated need of individuals either to be able to take their own lives or to have the law back up their own firmly held conviction that suicide is, or ought to be, an avoidable tragedy. I believe that people in both groups should be enabled to explore, honestly, their own position and that counselling and support should be available for those who want to think about suicide, without any penalty in law for the counsellor or supporter. However, to suggest the legalisation of the act of helping someone to die, even by their own express wish, is a step too far. It is being suggested by the Commission without a thorough survey of the effect this will undoubtedly have on our attitude to health care professionals, and to elderly and vulnerable people who often don't have much of a voice in these debates. How would we monitor and police counsellors and supporters, some of whom may turn out not to be as impartial as they appear? (And believe me, such cases would very quickly arise.) As part of the debate, I would like to see much more research done on the question of how we allow doctors not to strive officiously to prolong life and how this is discussed with patients.

This afternoon I am going to a meeting to prepare for a seminar on intervention in terminal care. How much is care allowed to intervene in the dying process - should it be allowed to and at what stages? How involved are patients in decisions? And what is the cost to the person of non-intervention or intervention? What are the boundaries of hospice care?

This is an agonizing dilemma for many caught up in progressive illnesses and for their carers and the professionals looking after them. But please let us approach the question from a wider base. It is true that sometimes the 'good' that individuals desire and the 'good' that we all, as a society, need to preserve the life and safety of the many (including the most vulnerable) can be contradictory. To place death under the gift of human agents and to welcome that as a 'good' for society is a radical departure from most ethical and religious philosophies, codes and teachings.  

There are some very good rapid response comments on the British Medical Journal website which show where many doctors' thinking is on this


Monday, 2 January 2012

Rise in Church Attendance

Ripon Cathedral Watchnight Service 2011
from the Cathedral Facebook Wall

Some good news! An article by Peter Oborne in the Telegraph, today, seems to support the impression one has from taking Christmas services - a creeping up of the number of people coming to worship at Christmas and over the New Year. Certainly, at Ripon Cathedral there were 400+ for midnight Communion at Christmas, 1,300 for the Boxing Day pilgrimage and over 600 for the Watchnight service on New Year's Eve, followed by a pretty decent number on Sunday morning when people were obviously not just sleeping off hang-overs and late nights. There has been a steady, gradual increase over the past few years. This seems encouraging in a fairly sparsely populated area (200,000+) where there have also been good attendances at many parish churches over the Christmas period. Of course, there are also lots of services where many churches simply don't count heads over Christmas - all the carol services, Christingle and school services, for example. We should keep records that include these, too, instead of just recording numbers at services of Holy Communion. 


Oborne (whose wife is a priest at a London church) is writing from the London perspective where church attendances are growing more rapidly that in other areas of the country, but my own view is that certain kinds of worship are engaging more people in worship and these can vary a great deal from place to place. Cathedrals and churches with choral traditions are increasing their numbers; so are churches which have a number of smaller, shorter services for different kinds of worshippers; churches that are experimenting with non-traditional times and days seem to be drawing new worshippers in - Saturday and Sunday late afternoon, for example; 'cafe church' is very popular in a number of our town and rural churches. Oborne suggests that it is easier to grow your congregation where there is 'one church, one vicar'. While that may be superficially true, in fact I think it is the warmth of welcome and the quality of the care taken over worship that count - it may be easier to ensure these things happen where there is a single priest, but that isn't necessarily so. Well organised multi-parish benefices where there is a committed, sometimes quite small team of people involved can achieve these things, too!


I've been reflecting on the value given to time in our society just lately. This was partly brought on by the depression I felt at reading the Care Quality Commission's October report which found that half of all the hospitals they looked at were failing to care properly for elderly patients.


The two areas most commonly cited for concern were nutrition and personal dignity. In the Health  Service, we seem to have locked ourselves into a system in which there is quite simply insufficient time to do the things that are needed to help people who might be slow or confused or frightened or uncooperative; this trend began many years ago. I remember as a very junior nurse when the overlap between shifts was cut as 'unnecessary'. This meant that reports between shifts were hurried and small aspects of attention to care disappeared -  long term patients no longer got their hair washed, deaf and blind patients had to manage appointments in other departments of the hospital unaccompanied and equipment was not so regularly inspected and cleaned. Tiny, seemingly insignificant little things that contributed, over time, to a great avalanche of care not given - care that, if you listened to them, mattered very much to patients. Seemingly, now, levels of staffing in many hospitals have reached the point where it is not possible to take the ten minutes needed to feed a patient their lunch or to deviate from the work plan should someone need immediate attention to go to the toilet. 

Last week's paper brought the news that GPs' pay will be increased take account of the fact that they are going to be directly responsible for commissioning and organising hospital care for their patients. The aspect of this news that alarms me is the fact that we are asking already stretched GPs to do yet more work - paying people more does not produce more time in which they can get things done.

It's not just in the area of health and social care that time is squeezed - speak to teachers, sales and delivery sevices, lawyers, local government officials. It seems that the concepts of management which largely shape our working lives give a value to (and often spend time measuring) almost every aspect of our lives except time itself. I recently taught a module for a university whose systems of evaluation and examination were so complex that I spent more time reading the regulations than marking the papers. All this eats into the time available for preparation and consequently into the quality of the learning experience for the students. It's always very difficult to argue in this way because those who manage, inspect and appraise will point out that unless there is constant accurate inspection we do not know what quality of service is being achieved. However, I think that we are beginning to discover that too much measurement in ways that are driven by targets often questioned by members of the trades and professions concerned is not producing the required results. This is sadly becoming all too clear in the case of the care of the elderly by health and social services. We have created systems that control individuals and try to sqeeze out of them more than the time avaialable can deliver. Meanwhile others are unemployed and can find no way to make a contribution to society - over a million young people without jobs.

 Of course managers are only servants of the social expectations that are laid on them. I am not singling them out for blame. And I am not arguing that we should not make good use of our time and be held to account. But let's ask a few questions about what 'good' means. William Penn once wrote that time is what we most want but what we use worst. In our society, we have the odd situation that we complain about being under pressure of time most of our working day and we say we struggle to have enough time to spend with our children and families, yet the self help section in bookshops is crammed with books giving advice about how not to waste time or how to avoid procrastination.  This paradox is mirrored in the unhealthy balance in our attitude to food - we are bombarded constantly by a ridiculous choice of foods, yet we, as a society, are fixated on dieting. I have friends from other cultures who are as frankly bewildered and even affronted by our dependence on diaries, watches, 'timeslots' and schedules as they are by the overwhelming range of foods available in our supermarkets.

At the start of another year, then, you can guess what my resolution is going to be! Ministry as an archdeacon calls for a lot of careful forward planning to fit things into the diary. Many of the things I do support occasions and projects that are important to the people concerned. As with everyone, I cannot simply fail to keep commitments. However, I would like to adopt a pace that allows more time to respond to the unexpected, to linger and listen, to be caught in the kind of 'doing nothing' or 'wasting time' that results in deeper relationships and new ideas. Isn't it usually heart-warming when someone appears to want to spend time with you - to linger and ask one more question or tell you something that certainly would not have come out in a rushed and scheduled exchange? So this is going to mean starting the day with more time for prayer, cramming less into the diary, being willing to say, not 'no', but 'please could you wait a little?' It's going to mean expecting things to take as long as they take and not trying to get more things done in a morning than can be done well. I guess the key to all this is taking responsibility before God for my own time - not allowing myself to become so much a slave to expectations that I allow myself to blame others for my lack of time. In 2012 I'd like to make a small stand for a more healthy attitude to how we use our time!    

Mervyn Morris, the twentieth century Jamaican poet and academic, puts it like this.

Give T'anks
Anodda year of love.
Give t'anks. An' pray
dat God-Above
will seh to time, No way.
No way:
de word is love.


Salmon Fishing in the Ure

Apparently, salmon and sea trout are returning to inhabit the river Ure in encouraging numbers. A hundred years ago the river was famous as one of the finest salmon rivers in the country. Its fast flowing water and many gravel beds made it ideal to support a huge salmon population and around 13 tonnes were caught every year. Sadly, by the 1940s, pollution lower down the river - the Ure joins the Swale to become the Ouse - meant that the salmon had mostly disappeared. They had to swim up the Humber estuary in order to reach the Ure and the more industrial rivers like the Aire and the Calder that flowed into the estuary, as well as the effluents from factories along the Humber, were so heavily polluted that oxygen supplies in the water were insufficient to sustain the salmon.

Aysgarth Falls on the River Ure

Today, the levels of pollution have dropped significantly and wild salmon and sea trout have been returning in encouraging numbers. The Ure Salmon Trust is a body specially formed to return the river to its former place among the major salmon rivers of the UK. Increased salmon fishing will hopefully mean a significant boost for the local economies along the river as those coming to enjoy the sport will contribute to local hotels, restaurants, pubs and tackle shops outside the usual holiday season. Fishing is at its height in the months of Februray - April and September - November. There will also be employment for ghillies who maintain the banks. The Trust has work to do in controlling the erosion that affects the river banks and restocking the river with locally produced fish. It is estimated that it will take five years to restock the river so that popluations reach levels that enable the Ure to make the impact it should be making as a salmon river.