Friends of Sherborne Abbey

The Friends of Sherborne Abbey can claim to be one of the oldest such organisations in the country, having been founded as long ago as 1930 ‘to bind together all those who love Sherborne Abbey in their desire to take part in preserving it for posterity’. Members can be found all over the country, drawn to join by their love of this loveliest of buildings.

Sherborne Abbey wood carving
Sherborne Abbey Ceiling
Sherborne Abbey Organ

For over 75 years, therefore, the Friends have been staunch supporters of every major project for the repair and restoration of the Abbey fabric. In this century alone, they have made a major contribution to the appeal to repair and strengthen the tower vault, and restore the Quire. They have paid for roof safety equipment, a fire detection system and the ramping of the main porch for disabled access. They were the principal benefactors of the rebuilding of the main organ and gave the new John Hayward window in the south aisle to commemorate the visit of HM The Queen and HRH The Prince Philip in 1998.

In short, they are vital to the present and the future of this great House of God, by their subscriptions, donations and bequests. I would warmly invite you to become a Friend of Sherborne Abbey, to help take our work and ministry into the fourteenth century of our life as the Mother Church of West Wessex.

Become a Friend of Sherborne Abbey

For further, please information contact the Membership Secretary using the link below:

Faith in Action Committee FIAC

The parish gives away ten percent of its giving and investment income to good causes. These include local organisations or individuals, and Christian organisations working at national or international level. We also respond to specific appeals. Our aim is to work in partnership with organisations both at home and overseas and establish personal links where possible.


  • makes and monitors donations on behalf of the parish to organisations and individuals;
  • furthers our Christian mission by regularly communicating with our partners, understanding,  promoting and supporting their work;
  • encourages regular prayer for those we support.

FIAC members come from all our churches and have a range of backgrounds and experience. We each take responsibility for links with one of our major partners. We are always looking for new members. For further details or enquiries about donations please contact the Parish Office: 01935 713777 or email

Our Partners include:

  • The Bible Society;
  • The Church Mission Society, especially our mission partner, Helen Kisakye and her family in Uganda;
  • Christian organisations in South Sudan, including Bishop Allison Theological College, Juba Diocesan Model Secondary School, and the EZO deanery;
  • St Saviour’s Church, Anglikanu Baznicas Riga, Latvia;
  • United Society Partners in the Gospel, USPG.

Local charities including the Green Shed, Rendezvous and Future Roots.

We also make special collections:

  • At Harvest, for the Salisbury Diocese Medical Link in Sudan and South Sudan, providing medical supplies, training and equipping new clinics.
  • At Advent, including the Christingle Service and Advent boxes, for the Children’s Society.
  • During Lent, in the run-up to Easter, we choose two projects, one local and one international for extra giving.

Projects, partners and donations

In 2021 we raised an amazing £6,000.00 for St Saviour’s Anglican Church, Riga, Latvia and for Future Roots and Countrymen’s Club, and that was during a national lockdown!

This year (2022) through our prayers, interest and gifts, we are supporting the work of  ‘Save Afghans from Hunger’ (providing basic support for Kabul residents) and ‘Harbour Vale School, Sherborne’ (support for young people’s mental health).

The FIAC has chosen these causes carefully.  In each case, we are reaching some of the most needy people in their communities.

Our support makes a real difference. Please read the information and have a look at our own short video:  We hope you will want to contribute.

(John Crossman, Chair, Faith in Action Committee)

Save Afghans from Hunger

Save Afghans from Hunger, SAFH was set up by Obaidullah Baheer, formerly a lecturer in transitional justice at the American University in Kabul. He is co-ordinating a relief scheme for Afghans most impacted by the regime change – usually through total loss of income. It was initially funded through Obaid’s personal donations, and you will see online that a crowd-funder appeal has raised some funds.

Our donation would make a big difference and help him expand the operation further.  At the moment they are feeding 200 families a day, across seven districts of Kabul further out into the province and this is costing around £150 per day. Every pound we give will enable them to feed another two families for a day. Last year we raised enough, that if repeated would enable them to feed an additional 14 families every day for a year.

Afghanistan was already a very poor country before the arrival of the Taliban, but a combination of inexperienced government, failing institutions and especially international sanctions is impacting on the lives of many, many people. In addition to the very poorest, many others have lost their jobs and women especially have been affected.

This is a small charity, acting predominantly as a Food Bank – but in very different circumstances to Sherborne!

“A man was walking out of his house and his wife told him to eat out with friends, they had nothing to eat at home. She also asked him to find some bread to bring back to the kids. He replied telling her that God would take care of them. They received a call from our team the same day telling them we would provide them freshly baked bread through the winter. I truly believe God is working through us and through every penny our donors give us.” 

Charlie Dorman-O’Gowan, whose mother worships at The Abbey, worked in Afghanistan until recently. He knows Obaid personally and confirmed this as a very worthwhile Lent project. This means we are in close contact with the activity on the ground and will receive reports of how our money is spent.

Harbour Vale School, Simons Road, Sherborne

“Harbour Vale School provides alternative education for students aged 11-16 who are unable to access mainstream education. We pride ourselves on having a child-centered approach and embrace the school ethos of: Believe, Achieve, Succeed”

Who benefits?

Harbour Vale students come from Sherborne and the local area. For a variety of personal circumstances, they are unable to cope with or benefit from mainstream school.  They receive a supportive curriculum, tailored to the individual, with teaching and support provided in smaller groups and with specific needs in mind.

Harbour Vale aims to create successful learners who are ready to live life to the full and be responsible citizens. Their learning journey includes academic subjects, creative subjects, vocational subjects and experiences.  This personalisation enables our students to engage with and enjoy their learning, and gain valuable lifelong skills

Harbour Vale School remained open throughout the pandemic, and much learning was delivered online but working from home was difficult for many of our students and their learning has been considerably affected.  Those now in year 11 (aged 15) have had disrupted learning in three successive school years.

Harbour Vale has provided extra mental health support using pandemic recovery funds. However, some students need much more support and intervention if they are to continue their recovery and go on to be responsible, resilient and respectful adults.

How are we going to help?

Our donations will be used to provide the extra, specialised counselling and support that the students most affected by the pandemic so desperately need.

“We are thrilled that the Parish is supporting our work.  Your donations will enable us to help those who have most suffered over the past two years, through no fault of their own. It will help them build their understanding and self-esteem after such a difficult time.  We are sure this will have a huge impact on students, and we will monitor carefully so we can give you informed feedback” Kelly Knight, Deputy Head

How we can help


Please pray for our two organisations:

For Harbour Vale:

  • Pray for the students of our area, pray for help to reach those who have found the pandemic so difficult;
  • Pray for the resources to support those who are anxious, or have lost education during this time;
  • Pray for those who have little stability in their lives.

For Save Afghans from Hunger:

  • Obaidullah asks us recognise and celebrate our common humanity;
  • Pray for all those struggling to meet their basic needs;
  • Pray for Afghanistan and its government and institutions;
  • Pray for Obaid and all the team working on the ground.

Make a Donation

You can give in THREE different ways. Please make sure you give your name if you are registered with us for Gift Aid (to register use the form on The Abbey website or collect one from the Parish Office).

1. By cash or cheque, in an envelope clearly marked “Lent Project”, and post to the Parish Office, 3 Abbey Close, Sherborne, DT9 3LQ. Please include your name ON the envelope if you wish us to claim Gift Aid – we can only do that if we hold your enduring Gift Aid Declaration.

2. Donation by BACS please use the account details below:

Account Name Sherborne PCC
Sort Code 40-52-40
Account Number 00008483

Please use the reference: your surname followed by LP, e.g. SmithLP

3. Donate directly using a debit or credit card on The Abbey’s website.

Click on the red card. Click “GIVE ONE-OFF” button. Enter the amount and in the Details Box put LENT2022.  You can make your donation anonymously by ticking the bottom box. The following screens process your method of payment and give an option for us to claim the 25% gift aid if you agree.

Sherborne Mothers’ Union Branch

Sherborne is one of the most beautiful towns in England. With its abundance of mediaeval buildings, superb Abbey, famous schools – both private and state, picturesque Almshouse, two castles, independent shops, supermarkets, antique dealers and small hospital with a minor injuries department, it has much to offer both visitors and residents.

Mothers Union
Sherborne Abbey Ceiling

The Sherborne Branch of Mothers’ Union is in the Diocese of Salisbury and is part of the worldwide organization of which there are over four million members. Mothers’ Union was founded in 1876 and exists to share Christ’s love for the world by encouraging, strengthening and supporting marriage & family life. Our particular overseas link is with the MU in Ezo, South Sudan. If you are new to the Sherborne area or have not heard about the work of MU, please come and see what we are about!

Membership is open to all men and women who have been baptised in the name of the Trinity and who support Mothers’ Union aims and objectives.

For more information contact our secretary, Jo Higgs by emailing

Meeting Times

4th Friday in the month
Griffiths Room, Digby Memorial Church Hall, Digby Road, Sherborne DT9 3NL
10am for 10.30am (ends 11.45am)

Thank you for visiting us!

We help in the community:

  • provide caravan holidays at Rockley Park, Poole and an annual supported summer holiday for families in need at the Sidholme Hotel, Sidmouth;
  • support families affected by domestic violence living in local safe housing;
  • support families of prisoners including children’s gifts at Christmas;
  • Facilitate toddler and parenting groups by assisting weekly at St Paul’s Church’s Tums,Tots,Toddlers;
  • Support the Virtual Baby Project;
  • Donate to MU overseas and emergency relief funds.

We help in The Abbey by:

  • making the Mothering Sunday posies;
  • making the Christingles at Christmas.

Our fund raising is by subscriptions, donations and special events.

Mothers union_party
  • by belonging to a group in your community;
  • by becoming a Diocesan Member receiving regular information and choosing your own level of involvement;
  • by joining the Indoor Members Scheme especially intended for those who can give time for prayer support;
  • by supporting Diocesan Projects as a Friend of Mothers’ Union.

Why not join MU as it offers you a chance to:

  • Meet, work and share with others
  • Demonstrate your commitment to family life
  • Become involved with projects and run schemes in your community
  • Explore and develop your own spirituality
  • Be a part of a global fellowship of members linked around the world