We are a group of four village churches in rural Dorset.
Part of the Church of England, we are in the deanery of Dorchester and the diocese of Salisbury.
Although our congregations are small, we hold services every Sunday in each church.
Some use traditional, formal styles of worship; others are much less formal and more relaxed.
Our members are also very committed to community life in our villages.
You will find us involved in a whole variety of village organisations.
The Revd Sarah Hillman is the current Vicar and also the assistant Rural Dean of Dorchester.
She was born and brought up in Oxfordshire. She has theology degrees from the Universities of Cambridge and Nottingham, and was ordained in 2003.
Before ordination, Sarah had a variety of jobs, teaching, working for churches and for the Church Times, a national church newspaper.
She lives in Puddletown Vicarage with a dog, cats and hens.
The Vicarage, The Square, Puddletown, Dorchester DT2 8SL
The Revd Rosie Coldwell – Active Retired Priest for the Puddletown Benefice, Dorset
began her career teaching Music and Religious Education in a school in Yorkshire. After the birth of her son Paul she moved with him to Milborne St Andrew to join her parents in 1979. She then taught Piano privately and was assistant Sunday School teacher and organist at St Andrew's church. In 1984 she married Tony Coldwell in Yorkshire and their two children Christopher and Becky were born during the eight years living in Calverley near Leeds. The family moved back to Dorset in 1992 in order to care for Rosie's parents Bob and Milthread. Rosie continued to teach privately and began a midweek Christian club for the First School children. During that time she also trained as a Lay Pastoral Assistant and began pastoral visiting etc in Milborne.
Following Paul's tragic death in 1999 and her mother's death in 2001 Rosie was encouraged by close friends to explore a priestly ministry and realised that this was God's calling for her. She began training at the Southern Theological Training Scheme at Sarum College in 2004 and she was ordained deacon in 2007 and priest in 2008. She served her curacy at Blandford Forum Parish Church until 2012 when, once again, the family moved to Yorkshire. While living in Calverley near Leeds Rosie became Honorary Curate at St Wilfrid's Church and for four years led a home group and enjoyed assisting with church services, home communions, pastoral visiting and prayer ministry which she feels passionate about.
Once Tony retired from playing the organ at St Wilfrid's, he and Rosie both retired to Milborne St Andrew in 2016, leaving Christopher and Becky settled in Yorkshire. She is now enjoying active retired ministry in the Puddletown Benefice and assisting Revd Sarah Hillman and she hopes to continue this ministry for as long as she is able.
Jayne Brayshaw Tolpuddle
Sue Britton came to live and farm in Dewlish more than 50 years ago. Throughout this time she has worshipped at All Saints’ Church, and served on the PCC (church council) for the past 21 years. She became a church warden in 2009.
Jim Burg, churchwarden at Dewlish, is a retired builder. He and his wife Daphne have lived in the village for 49 years, and have two children and four grandchildren. He has been warden for many years.
Hilly Cobban is one of Tolpuddle’s churchwardens. She has lived in the village for about 19 years and is married to John Taylor, a retired GP. She has a nursing background, mainly in care of the elderly but retired several years ago, to allow more time for family, friends and unpaid work! She was brought up in a Christian household, her father being on the General Synod, where he spoke up in favour of the ordination of women. She was secretary of the PCC for a couple of years before being asked to fill a vacant churchwarden post, which she did hesitantly but willingly. She feels she has grown to the job!
Dawn Loveless, born into a Christian family, has always lived and worked in Dorset and has been living in Puddletown for a total of twenty four years.
She was blessed with forty one years of marriage to Brian, has a son and a daughter and had a nursing career of thirty five years. In 1977, as a family, they built a bungalow and later, in 1988, had their own business in Weymouth. The business was a Care Home in a Grade two Listed Old Manor House next to St Nicholas church at Broadway. Brian and Dawn sold the business after fifteen years as Brian’s health had deteriorated.
The Church supported Dawn during Brian’s illness and also when she was widowed in 2005. As a result of their help her faith has survived and increased. She was involved in church duties in her previous parish as well as now at St Mary’s Puddletown. She has been a member of the PCC since 2018 and also has been the Children’s Society Coordinator since 2014.
Dawn enjoys her own family and has six grandchildren and six great grandchildren.
Cynthia Metcalfe Puddletown
Pam Shults grew up in a Christian family where she was brought up in the Faith. Since being a young teenager, she has enjoyed working with children and helping with children’s services, Sunday schools, church crèches, holiday clubs and many other situations. She has lived in many different places, and has always found churches where she has been welcomed and able to join in with home groups, toddler groups, bible study groups, etc. She hopes that she can continue to develop efficient skills in her role as churchwarden here at Milborne St Andrew.