Vicar of Chiswick Retires After 32 years of Service
Special mass at St Nicholas celebrates the work of this remarkable man
After 32 years of service, the Very Rev. Prebendary Patrick Tuft, Vicar of St. Nicholas Church will retire as Vicar of Chiswick at the end of this month. Whilst the graveyard and archives at this historical church bear witness to the varied lives and social status of those who lived and died in this parish down the centuries, Rev. Tuft has himself added to the rich history and parish life over the three decades he has been Vicar.
Arriving in Chiswick from St Paul’s Cathedral on May 6th 1974, he brought with him his wife Pauline and five sons then aged 12, 10 and two year old triplets. Over the years the family has experienced many changes, made many friends and will certainly leave their mark on Chiswick’s vibrant faith community.
Monsignor James Curry of Our Lady of Grace said “Patrick has been a firm friend to the Catholic community here at Our Lady of Grace and to its priests. Patrick’s gift for friendship has played a great part in the ecumenical progress that has been made in this part of London in those years. He and his wife Pauline will be greatly missed. “We would like to record our thanks to Patrick and to wish him and Pauline every happiness in the years to come.”
Rev Tuft said “It has been a privilege to be Vicar here in Chiswick but at 75 I’m ready to retire!”
The family will be moving to Isleworth at the end of this month. A special service will be held at St Nicholas’ Church this Sunday 26th November at 10.30am.
St Nicholas is the historic Church of England Parish Church in Chiswick where Christians have worshipped for over 1,000. The history of St Nicholas’ Church is a fascinating one and encapsulates the life of Chiswick over the past millennium.
There has been a church beside the Thames at Chiswick for over a thousand years and maybe since as far back as the 7th century. It was common practice to dedicate a church to St Nicholas, patron saint of sailors, fishermen and travellers, where parishioners’ livelihoods depended on water. Chiswick was a fishing village where later farming, basket-making, brewing and ship-building developed.
The church today incorporates the oldest surviving building in Chiswick, the tower dating from 1425. The rest of the building was completely renewed in the 1880s to a design by John Loughborough Pearson, and most of the expense was borne by a churchwarden of the time, Henry Smith of Fuller, Smith and Turner.
November 23, 2006