Council 401 Chingford
Meeting Hall: St Theresa's Hall, Station Road E4 7BJ
We welcome all visitors to Council 401 Chingford
Chingford Council of the Knights of St Columba was erected on 27th June 1948. The charter members had previously been members of Woodford Council 321 and, once sufficient numbers from Chingford had joined the order, it then became possible to create a Council in Chingford. The Council is part of Brentwood Province 10 and has been active now for 76 Years.
The first Grand Knight of Chingford Council 401 was Wilf Soggee who had been a Mayor of Chingford. The Council had done a tremendous amount of work for Hungarian refugees who were billeted in the area in 1956. Over the years Councils 321 and 561 were incorporated into Chingford Council 401.
Many posts in the Council in 1948 have ceased to exist over the years, examples being Financial Secretary, Squire Leaders, Education Section, Business Services, and Inside and Outside Guards. These posts are now replaced by other names.
The Council has been very active in the Chingford area for many years, and we have organised numerous fund raising events, linked to our church – Our Lady Of Grace and St Teresa Of Avila. The proceeds of our fund raising have been donated to charities on an annual basis.
The Council has provided Knights for past May processions, Maundy Thursday processions, and in the past formed a large part of the church choir. In 1982 the Knights acted as stewards at Wembley Stadium for the Pope’s UK London visit, and again in 2010 we attended at Hyde Park for Pope Benedict’s visit, carrying the parish banner which still exists on our church altar today.
In the past we organised Masses for housebound parishioners, bringing in stretcher cases and adapting church benches to accommodate them. The Council has Ministers of the Word and Eucharistic Ministers at our Chingford Church, and is involved in taking sick parishioners to Lourdes, using a Jumbulance over the years. The Council erects and dismantles the Christmas lights and crib, assists with stewarding at Walsingham, runs bookfairs, collects old spectacles and postage stamps, and also collects tools to send to other parts of the world. We also provide Altar Servers throughout the week at our church. Even car rallies were arranged in the past for the church as well as Church Bazaars. The Knights have been called the handymen of the Parish, cleaning drains and gutters and doing many DIY jobs.
Our most successful annual event involves raising funds for the charity BCCS (Brentwood Catholic Children’s Society). For approximately 10 years, we organised the Annual Children’s Day Event locally for BCCS and followed this with many Annual Sponsored Forest Walks and two church walks. All these BCCS events have raised thousands of pounds for many years for this charity, and the very popular Sponsored Forest Walks will continue into the future.
This year one of our Knights ran in the London Marathon, raising funds for a charity.
Meet Our Council Officers
Our Lady of Grace and St Theresa of Avila. The Avila Room, St Theresa’s Hall, Station Road E4 7BJ
Brother John Brown