We are delighted to announce that Mattins will be said on Sunday 9th. August at 11 am. All are welcome. We have had to change the normal arrangements to comply with health guidance so please note information below if you are intending to attend. 
Unfortunately there will be no live streaming this week.
1. The garden gate will be open from 10.30 to allow access to the church through the side doors in front of Petyt Hall which will be kept open throughout the service as will the windows in the Nave. Petyt Hall (and therefore the loos) will be out of bounds.

2. A table in the courtyard will have hand sanitisers which everyone entering must use before collecting their prayer book from a separate table in front of the side doors. If you have your own prayerbook please bring it with you.

3. We have created 68 spaces on the ground floor (identified with a red dot on the seat of the relevant pews) which will allow everyone to observe a 2 metre distance from the rest of the congregation during the service. If more people than expected arrive they can be directed to overflow seating in the gallery or listen to the service from the courtyard.

4. The organ will be played for half an hour before the service and there will be an organ solo in place of the Anthem. There will be no choir and but to assist the return to normality Sunday’s service will include 3 hymns that the congregation will be invited to follow in their hymn books or hum along with softly as they wish.

5. Inside the church a side person will direct you to your seat. We will be filling the pews from the front and the first seats to be filled will be the choir stalls. Please bear with us that you will not be able to sit in your familiar seat.
6. No collection will be taken. If people wish to make a donation they should bring their debit card to swipe on the card reader as they leave. A swipe costs £10.

7. Prayer books are to be left in the pews ( unless you have brought your own). Departure will be via the front doors. Thanks to the flair and industry of Halle Swanson the new edition of the Anchor Magazine will be available for collection from the table in the porch as you leave. David will be outside the porch to say his goodbyes. Bowing is to be the new handshake.

8. Prayers should be offered for a sunny day (so far these prayers are being answered).
We hope to see as many of you as possible on Sunday.       
The Vicar and Churchwardens
Sunday August 9 (JW), 2 Sermon here

Sunday July 5, 12 (JW), 19 and 26 (JW)  Sermon here

Sunday June 28 video stream here and Sermon here

Sunday June 21 video stream here and Sermon here

Sunday 14 June video stream here and JW's Sermon here

Sunday 7 June video stream here and Sermon here

Sunday 31 May video stream here and JW's Sermon here

Sunday 24 May video stream here and Sermon here

 Sunday 17 May video stream here and Sermon  here

 Sunday 10 May video stream here and Sermon here

Canon David Reindorp’s Easter 3 Fourth Sunday after Easter Sermon 3 May 2020 here and Video Message here

Canon David Reindorp’s Sunday 26 April Sermon 2020 here and Video Message here

Canon David Reindorp’s Easter 1 Second Sunday after Easter Video Sermon 2020 here

Sermon from our Reader John Watherston (JW) for Sunday, 19th April 2020  Second after Easter (Low Sunday) here

website sunday references as per Lectionary, videos by calender 

Canon David Reindorp’s Easter Sermon 2020 text here and Easter Video Message 2020 here

Good Friday Addresses here

Palm Sunday sermon video here

Also videos of Chelsea Old Church services and messages collected together on youtube channel

The office can still  be contacted on or 020 7795 1019

 The Vicar can be contacted on or 020 7352 5627

Thoughts from the Reverend Canon David Reindorp, Vicar of Chelsea Old Church on 29 March 2020

Dear All

The Archbishops have made a tough call and have asked that no services be streamed from churches.

So this comes from my home.

 The readings today could not be more apposite.

God is talking to Ezekiel:  ”Mortal, these bones are the whole house of Israel. They say our bones are dried up and our hope is lost. We are cut off completely.”

 This last is true, but our bones are not dried up and our hope is not lost.

The Gospel reading is about the raising of Lazarus. That reminds us that our Easter journey is about victory over the grave.

The raising of Lazarus clearly astonished the onlookers and terrified the Pharisees who must have reported it to the Roman authorities.

Because we know the whole story, the raising of Lazarus doesn’t surprise us.

 Our whole Christian hope is bond up with the Resurrection and that we are the Body of Christ here on earth is a result of that Resurrection.

Our churches are closed. That is a sadness and a deprivation. But the Church is more than buildings, however beloved ours is.

We can still pray and worship in our own homes and in our hearts.

This is a time to love our neighbours as we are commanded. Through the miracles of modern communication, we can keep in touch with all.

This week I rang my old nanny. In my mind she is ageless though she will be 80 this year.

She said she had never nannied such a gifted and beautiful child (if you believe that you will believe anything!)

 These are serious times. We face an external and unknown enemy which literally seeps into our lives and the anxiety creeps into all our hearts.

It is a time for trust in God and each other. We are the Resurrection people.

God bless you all and stay safe.

 P.S.  I was amused to overhear my youngest son, who is with me, talking to his sister who is expecting a baby in the next fortnight. She is in isolation. She was saying how difficult it was to keep a two-year old amused

My son said: “You think you have it tough?  I’ve got Dad!”

You can also view a video of  Mattins and another of Communion recorded at Chelsea Old Church on 22nd. March.


There are a range of Christian resources available and the link below lists digital streaming, tv and radio programmes, blogs and other resources.


Monuments  here
William Drake Limited have completed installation of the new organ.


Recently donated to the Church, a book of 25 sermons, starting in 1954, preached in Chelsea Old Church in honour of Thomas More, on the anniversary of his birth. Preachers ranged from the Archbishop of Canterbury, through Professors of Theology and Ecclesiastical History to Bishops and Deans. 

Church Garden

The Church gardens and gardeners won these competitions in 2018
1st Chelsea Gardens Guild Churches Summer Competition
1st Kensington Gardeners Club Churches
1st Brighter Kensington and Chelsea Scheme
Bronze medal in class 10, the London Garden Society


Received recently from the Prior Studios photos of a couple of drawings by William Orpen, one of them below.

Major Sir William Newenham Montague Orpen, KBE, RA, RHA (27 November 1878 – 29 September 1931) was an Irish artist who worked mainly in London. Orpen was a fine draughtsman and a popular, commercially successful, painter of portraits for the well-to-do in Edwardian society.

During the First World War, he was the most prolific of the official artists sent by Britain to the Western Front. (Source: Wikipedia)
Rediscovered Stained Glass Window
Received an article dated 1922, shown below, when a medieval stained glass window was discovered when cement and building rubble was removed that covered a window between the Vestry and Lawrence Chapel. Francis Eeles, renowned stained glass expert, identified the window as made between 1320-1340, the oldest window in London apart from Westminster Abbey. The window was sent to the V&A Museum with a plan to eventually restore it to Chelsea Old Church.

If the window returned before WWII when the Church was bombed it may have been destroyed, however enquiries were made to V&A to see whether they have records of the window's fate, yes, they returned it in 1922.

So probably destroyed in 1941.

But research at British and Kensington Library and stained glass experts revealed that the Chelsea Society had paid for transferring the window to the crypt at St Lukes' in 1939 for safekeeping. An original search at Chelsea Old Church had not found the window but a more 'in depth' study had found the window sandwiched inside a broken 19th C window in the Tower clock room. The window was now in 4 main parts, pictured below, plus many smaller pieces of glass.

The top two were Maurice Drake restorations, the third the 1320 medieval window which is still curved having been folded within another longer window. The fourth the remains of the wording added in 1922.
The inscription at the bottom says:
To the glory of God and in memory of the unknown saints who for centuries have worshipped Him in this place. This window was uncovered on St Bartholomew day 1922 was recreated 1923.
The 14th century glass of this window was originally in the western light of the eastern most window in the north wall of the Lawrence Chapel opposite blocked by the Lawrence Chapel and Colvile monuments After CCC years the glass was found behind layers of plaster in August 1922.
All of the window is now at Canterbury Cathedral stained glass studio for conservation advice and awaits the raising of funds to complete the project by displaying it in it's original window in the Lawrence Chapel.

In the Churchyard - June



Daily Hope

The Church of England has launched a free dial-in worship service to bring prayer to people’s homes while churches are closed because of the coronavirus pandemic.
Daily Hope, which is available from today (26 April), offers music, prayers and reflections as well as full worship services from the Church of England at the end of a telephone line. The national line is available 24 hours a day on 0800 804 8044.

Archbishop of Canterbury Justin Welby said the service has been primarily set up to support Britons, especially the elderly, who are unable to join online church services.

Anchor Magazine

Spring & Summer Anchor Magazine out now and can be collected on leaving the Church, or click here to view now

A New Church Organ at Chelsea Old Church
The organ plays a crucial part in the life of the church, used every Sunday and frequently during the week for funerals, memorials, baptisms and weddings. 

The organ removed in January 2019 was built in 1957, replaced the instrument lost when the church was bombed. Like the church itself, the organs of Chelsea Old Church have a long and interesting history. Most notable amongst these was an organ by the famous builder of the day, Renatus Harris, which is believed to have stood in the church from 1712-1723. The early removal of this instrument (for unknown reasons) prevented its eventual destruction had it remained up until 1941, and parts of it are believed still to be in existence in a church in Devon.

Invitations to tender were sent to a shortlist of organ builders and the result was the Devon-based organ builders William Drake built the organ.
We are delighted that William Drake Limited have completed installation of the new organ, compressed into a 1min 23 sec stop frame video here
It was heard for the first time at Mattins on Sunday 22nd. September 2019.

To see the Dedication and Celebration of The New Pipe Organ programme click here, which took place on 21st November.

The new organ is a fine new instrument that will not only serve the needs of the parish, but also play a part in the wider musical life of Chelsea.


The Clock at Chelsea Old Church

The Edmund Howard clock, 1761, formerly at Chelsea Old Church, but where is it now? The present clock, made by Dents, who built Big Ben, was installed in 1950's.

It was assumed the 1761 clock was destroyed during the 1941 raid, but a horologist has found a film of the clock alive and well at Dent's workshops and can be seen from 1 minute 59 seconds to 2 minutes 10 seconds in the Pathe film here
which was filmed at Dents in 1959. So the search is on for the Howard clock.


Dacre Monument
Conservation and restoration work started on 28th January by conservators Granville and Burbidge and was completed 7th March 2014. The work was funded by the Dacre family in memory of the 27th Baroness Dacre.

Remains of Dacre Monument beside More Chapel after Blitz, 1941

Obelisk before during and after

mouldings before and after

Skull, wings and hourglass before and after 

The dog at the feet of Lady Dacre removed to measure up for a new right front leg and reattach the left leg.


Prince William and the Duchess of Cambridge, née Kate Middleton, attended a friend's wedding at the weekend, having just returned home after their whirlwind stay in New York. The royal couple were guests at the ceremony, which took place at Chelsea Old Church near the River Thames. 

The occasion may well have been a trip down memory lane for the Duchess, as the church is situated on the very same road as the Middleton's London home, where Kate shared a flat with Pippa in the years she lived in the capital after graduating from St Andrews.
Kate, who is currently five months pregnant with her and William's second child, looked elegant in a floor-length black lace gown with full-length lace sleeves, most likely the same one by designer Diane Von Furstenberg that she opted to wear  to the star-studded Royal Variety Performance last month. 

For the wedding, the Duchess accessorised with a small sparkling black clutch and black heels, wrapping up against the chill with a red tartan scarf that was draped over her shoulders. She wore her brunette locks loose over her shoulders.
Courtesy Hello Magazine