Staff and patients at The Castle Hill Unit, Huddersfield, are thanking a vicar for taking his clothes off!

Canon Michael Storey, Vicar of St Barnabus’s, Crosland Moor, joined 11 members of the church’s men’s group last year to feature in a 2003 calendar, produced as part of the church’s centenary celebrations. In true ‘Calendar Girls’ style, Canon Storey was pictured at his manual typewriter, behind a strategically opened filing cabinet.

336 calendars were produced and sold very quickly, raising £840. The church decided to give half the money to ‘Music for the deaf’ and half to the Castle Hill Unit at St Luke’s Hospital, which is run by the South West Yorkshire Mental Health NHS Trust. Di Ellerton, the hospital chaplain, has built up a good rapport with patients at Castle Hill over the years and, as Canon Storey said, ‘It seemed like an excellent idea as we wanted to do something locally, and we were happy to give the money to Castle Hill’.

During the regular ‘patients meeting’ at the Unit, where patients can raise concerns and discuss issues, the question of what to spend the money on came up. The strong favourite was to spend the majority of the money on a games console, and when the issue was voted on, a decision was made to purchase an X-Box, along with a TV unit. The rest of the money was used to re-cover one of the pool tables.

Speaking about the church’s donation, Andrew Flerin, unit manager, said, ‘We’re very grateful to the church for giving us the money raised from the calendar. The X-Box has gone down really well with the patients and we all want to say a massive thank you to Canon Storey and the men’s group at the church for their generosity and giving us another popular activity for the unit.’


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