Christmas Comes Late For Scilly Islanders Hit By Storms

St Agnes Church

St Agnes Church

Britain’s most southwesterly church community will be celebrating Christmas almost three weeks late because of the recent run of stormy weather.

Strong winds and high tides prevented the Chaplain, Canon Paul Miller, from getting to the St Agnes school nativity and island carol service on the Friday before Christmas.

Then on the next Sunday, boating was cancelled because of the poor weather.

This Sunday, 18 days after Christmas Day, Paul will make a fourth attempt.

He says he heard the school carol service was a huge success and he’s pleased that islanders went ahead without the Chaplain being present.

Paul says he’s impressed with how residents in Scilly adapt to the conditions and take what life throws at them.

And he says he’s determined to get to St Agnes for some form of seasonal celebration this weekend. Although the weather forecast is looking better, he says won’t give up if he can’t make it again.

Celebrating Christmas later that 25th December isn’t unheard of. Paul says some churches, such as the Greek Orthodox, hold their services on 6th January.

They won’t be singing many carols but ‘In The Bleak Midwinter’ will be on the list, which Paul says reflects the difficult weather conditions we’ve faced.