The United Church Dorchester

United in faith, united in action

News and reports

Read below about some of the most important issues and developments within the United Church and beyond.




United Church Dorchester: Coronavirus and the latest lockdown

The church and its buildings are gradually re-opening, both for limited, permitted events (i.e. Blood Donors, AA) and various activities led either by the church or outside organisations (i.e. church shop, Story Tots, Country Market).

Please contact the Church Office if your organisation has used the buildings in the past and would like to re-start; or if you would like to find out more about starting a new Room Hire arrangement

The most recent updates, taking account of the gradual easing of lockdown restrictions, include:

Church services: updated 19 July

We are pleased to confirm that 'live' services, with a preacher in church, continue to evolve, and singing is now allowed! Full details can be found on the Services page.  

Details of on-line alternatives (including written services, YouTube and Zoom services, and national TV and radio broadcasts) can also be found on the Services page.

Please contact Wendy Hilton if you cannot access the printed service and would like a paper version delivered.


Church coffee shop is re-opening: updated 13 September

For further information, please see the Coffee Shop page

Church shop now open four days each week: updated 14 September

For further information, please see the Church Shop page.

Story Tots has re-started: updated 22 April

The weekly group for young children and their parents / carers has re-started: please see the Story Tots page for more details.

Badminton clubs re-started: updated 17 May

The Monday Badminton club re-started on 17 May, and the Friday group re-started on 21 May, with a range of measures in place to protect everyone's safety. Currently, only existing members will be able to participate - please see the Badminton pages for further information.

Craft groups: updated 18 September

The UCD group is re-starting its regular meetings at UCD again: it will be meeting in the church foyer on Tuesday mornings from 21 September, and all are welcome to join. In addition the Circuit Craft group is re-starting its meetings via Zoom: please see the Patchwork and Craft page for more details.

Forest Praise: updated 19 July

Forest Praise has re-started, and will be taking place in a new venue as the UCD organisers team up with St George's Fordington. Details of the next gathering will be posted on the Events page when the information is available.



General support for church members

Are you still worried about going out? Finding it hard to cope with masks and queuing? Family too far away to help? Needing to self-isolate?

Please don’t struggle on alone and put yourself at risk.  Don’t forget there is a cheerful and willing band of younger folk from church who are very happy to help out.  We are happy to continue shopping, collecting prescriptions or other tasks as long as needed so if you, or folk you know, need support then please don’t hesitate to make contact. 

Support is being coordinated by Gill and Peter Robinson.



Rev. Peter Clark's retirement

Rev. Peter Clark is retiring at the end of September, so there are some special services and events to mark the occasion:

On Saturday, 18 September, there will be an afternoon tea at UCD in the church hall – please see the September News sheet for more details.

On Sunday, 26 September, there will be a presentation during Rev. Clark’s last morning service at UCD, to thank him for all he has done during his time as minister.

On Sunday, 26 September there will be a Circuit Farewell Service at 4pm, taking place at Bridport United Church, to be followed by a tea.




Christian Aid Week: Autumn Update and Recipe Book

There are a number of events taking place across September and October for Christian Aid Week, after being postponed from May because of the pandemic.

The first of these was the sponsored walk on 4 September, and now the locally-sourced, professionally produced Christian Aid Recipe Book has been published. We can also look forward to events in October - another street collection, the Christian Aid Market, and the Ecumenical Service.

Full details are on the Autumn Update page, along with updates on events and collections from May.



CAP courses

A local course is being run on behalf of CAP (Christians Against Poverty), starting in September.

The Life Skills course is designed to help people learn skills to live well on a low income - covering issues such as budgeting, cooking on limited finances or changing utility suppliers. It also offers empowering advice on relationships and self-esteem – you can watch more about the course in this CAP video. The sessions will be run at St. Mary’s Church in Weymouth across eight Thursdays, starting on 23rd September – booking is essential, so please email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or call / text her on 07857 927190.



Church AGM 2021

 UCD’s 2021 AGM was held on Thursday 1st July, at 7pm in the church.

The Annual Reports and Church Accounts for both 2019 and 2020 were approved at the meeting, and are available to read on the Annual Reports page. 

The minutes of the AGM are also now available, on the Members' area of the web site: just follow the AGM and 2021 Minutes links once you have logged in to the password-protected area (and if you have forgotten the password, please contact Di Lawrence at the UCD Office for a reminder).



News from Traidcraft

Traidcraft continue to trade in their new, slimmed down company. The Autumn catalogue is now out, containing a complete range of Fairtrade foods, gifts and clothing.

The church shop has now re-opened, so do please come and support the Fairtrade movement.