On a brief visit to Gillingham Museum on Wednesday June 27th the Bishop of Sherborne "threw the switch" to illuminate a stained glass panel which is dedicated to Robert Crowther Abbott, Vicar of Gillingham, who in 1925, was appointed the first ever Suffragan Bishop of Sherborne. The panel was originally designed for the vicar's study in the old vicarage (now Rawson Court) where it remained for many years. It was later transferred to the new Rectory, but recent refurbishment rendered it redundant so it was given to the museum for safe keeping.
The present Bishop, Dr Graham Kings, together with the Archdeacons of Dorset and Sherborne and a number of youth workers have been taking part in a residential youth and community project in Gillingham and Milton on Stour called "Living Waters".
Prior to visiting the museum the team breakfasted at Waitrose before embarking on a 9 mile pilgrimage walk to various churches in the area. This walk was organised by Mr Sam Woodcock, who is the museum's vice-chairman and Milton's churchwarden. The group stopped at various points on the way where Sam explained various snippets of local history including a look at Purns Mill painted by the famous artist John Constable. They were joined at Silton by the museum's curator Peter Barker who described a local medieval pilgrimage route, bringing with him some artefacts he had found while field walking in the area. He encouraged the present walkers to be on the lookout for evidence of pilgrimages long ago!"
The walk ended at Langham Church.