St James's Church, Hampton Hill

St James's vicars through the years | Revd Fitzroy John Fitz Wygram | Revd Henry Bligh | Revd Charles Robert Job | Revd Richard Coad-Pryor | Revd Frederick Pearce Pope Harvey | Revd Rupert Hoyle Brunt | Revd John Nicholas Chubb | Revd Brian Leathard | Revd Peter Vannozzi

Revd Nicholas Chubb, MA

Rev. J. Nicholas Chubb

Revd Nicholas Chubb

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Introducing Revd Nicholas Chubb

Revd Chubb was previously vicar of All Saints, Brixworth, Northampton, in the Diocese of Peterborough. Revd Chubb and his wife, Susan, had three children, Andrew, Sarah and Naomi. Andrew went to university in the autumn after his father started at St James's and the two girls went to Bishop Wand School. The family were keen musicians. They gave a fine example of a loving, caring Christian family.

Revd Chubb's affinity with young families resulted in many of them becoming regular worshippers. He had a fabulous memory for names and faces and memorised the names of all the communicants within a few weeks of starting at St James's, caringly prefacing “the Body of Christ” by each individual name.

He bridged the gap between the country environment he had come from and the suburban life he now found himself in, taking a moderate path which encouraged people to use their mind and reason, and fostering active involvement as a means to spiritual growth. He had the very necessary gift of a sense of humour which often must have stood him in good stead. Read the article The Revd J Nicholas Chubb.

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The Chubb familly

The Chubb familly

Appointment and induction

The Institution by the Bishop of Kensington and the Induction by the Archdeacon of Middlesex of Revd John Nicholas Chubb to St James's, Hampton Hill, took place on Monday 13 July 1981. Before his induction Revd Chubb commented in the April 1981 Spire: "My impression from afar is that there is a strong worshipping community at St James's who are faithful in prayer and loving action, and my hope will be to continue to build on the firm foundations which have been so well laid by others, to try to help further on their spiritual pilgrimage those who have already started, and to find ways of bringing and welcoming into Christ's church those who long to know more of Jesus as their Lord and Saviour." During the induction, “there was a choice moment watching the Archdeacon’s face crumple with mirth as the new vicar almost demolished the church bell at his very first attempt at ringing it.”

Significant developments during Revd Chubb's incumbency

Revd Chubb changed the pattern of some services to make them more suitable for younger members of the congregation. The Parade Service and Family Communion, which took place on the first Sunday of each month, was replaced by a new style 'Informal Service' in 1985 which was shorter and simpler. The readings and prayers were read by members of the cubs and scouts and the vicar called on younger members of the congregation to assist him during his talk. He introduced a Prayer ‘n Praise Service on Sunday evenings, after evensong or communion, with The Travellers’ group of musicians and singers accompanying congregational rock gospel music with piano, guitar and percussion from the ‘Spirit of Praise’ songbooks, also used in the Informal Services. Revd Chubb started Healing Services, and continued and expanded the range of a variety of faith and fellowship groups.

The raised stage

The raised stage

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He organised the remodelling of the church in 1983 with a portable altar on a new raised stage in front of the chancel and speech re-inforcement equipment with a loop system for those with hearing difficulties. The church entered another period of financial difficulty, partly caused by the need to meet the hugely increased contribution requested by the Diocese as a result of the Church of England's own financial problems. A major Stewardship Renewal and Development Campaign was mounted in 1987 which led to a small increase in income.

In 1988, the Sunday School was renamed 'The Jays' - J for Jesus and J for St. James "as a place of worship, of joy, of fun - a place where children want to be. A place of welcome; a place to discover the joy and good news of Christianity and its power to change people's lives."

The end of Revd Chubb's incumbency

Revd Chubb left St James’s to take up his new post of Chaplain to the District and Edith Cavell Hospitals in Peterborough in 1988. The Pentecost evening service, Revd Chubb’s last service at St James’s, contained music and liturgical dancing to celebrate the feast of Pentecost. The evening was rounded off with delicious light refreshments accompanied by wine and punch.
Presentations to Nicholas and Susan followed: a cheque embracing donations from many parishioners, a beautiful album collated by Dick Waltham of photographs depicting the church and its surroundings throughout the seven years that Nicholas has been vicar here at St James’s. There were speeches wishing them well in their new ventures and a gift from the Mothers’ Union. Nicholas and Susan were obviously moved and their voices were feeling the strain after a long emotional day, but the humour was not lost when Nicholas asked for some WD4O to clear his throat!

The July 1988 Spire reported: "He had the very necessary gift of a sense of humour which often must have stood him in good stead. He never failed to encourage the ministry of the laity, irrespective of sex. He was imbued with great qualities both as a man and a priest, going out to meet people and also willing to step aside with them and help them. He encouraged active involvement as a means to spiritual growth and had a great impact on family life.... Nicholas had an affinity with young families which resulted in many of them becoming regular worshippers. He possessed a good memory for names and faces........ In a few weeks after arriving he had memorised the names of all the communicants, caringly prefacing 'the Body of Christ' by each individual name......." Read the article A Fitting Farewell for Nicholas and Susan.

Revd Chubb died peacefully at York Hospital, aged 78 years, on January 30th, 2012. The funeral service was held at St Chad’s Church, Campleshon Road, on Monday February 6th and was followed by committal at York Crematorium.

St James's Church
The Parish Church of St James, Hampton Hill, TW12 1DQ
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