Category Archives: Notices

Goodbye to Bob Parsons, a cherished Friend 

Hemel Hempstead Friends are sad to announce the death of Dr Bob Parsons  who died on 29th March at the age of 88 following an 18 month decline in health.

Bob was a well-loved Friend and had been a member of our meeting for many years. His strong Quaker faith inspired him to work in social justice, and he founded the Hope for Children charity in Hemel Hempstead following his retirement in 1994, with the mission to create opportunities for children living in extreme poverty.

At a meeting for worship shortly after his death was announced, numerous Friends gave ministry, recalling the man who had not only inspired them with his faith, but entertained them with excellent humour, and cared with enormous empathy. 

Our memories of Bob  


The Quaker advice of George Fox in 1656, was shared at the meeting: 

“Be patterns, be examples, in all countries, places, islands, nations, wherever you come; that your carriage and life may preach among all sorts of people and to them; then you will come to walk cheerfully over the world, answering that of God in everyone”   Quaker Faith and Practice 19.32

Bob Parsons certainly lived up to this advice and he will be very much missed. 

In a statement released by the charity, Hope for Children, Bob was described:   

“This man was an amazing person; an energetic Christian socialist and philanthropist with a strong Quaker faith. 

“Peace and social justice were at the centre of his life and work. The charity he founded, Hope for Children, is determined to carry forward that work. The charity continues to strive to deliver Bob’s mission, to create opportunities for overlooked, vulnerable and exploited children living in extreme poverty.”

Bob’s funeral took place on Friday 8 April at Garston Crematorium. It was attended by Friends, colleagues and Bob’s family including children and grandchildren who had travelled from far and wide.

According to Bob’s wishes, his ashes will be buried in the Meeting House Burial ground gardens. A meeting for worship will be held in memoriam at which we hope to welcome Friends from near and far. The date Sunday 24 July. Bob’s beloved wife Anne who died several years ago will also be remembered. 

A full obituary to Dr Bob Parsons, OBE,  was published in the Hemel Hempstead Gazette



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Meeting for Worship Free From Government Pandemic Restrictions 

We have decided to continue with 

  • Ventilation – one of the most effective ways to mitigate transmission
  • Hand sanitising – keep available 
  • Mask wearing – down to personal choice 
  • Shaking hands – hand shaking will be reinstated but can be refused without offence.
  • Hugging – is permitted at the discretion of the individual – indicate if you do not wish to accept a hug
  • Hospitality – the coffee rota will be reinstated.
  • Zoom – we have discontinued blended meeting on Zoom until further notice.

In January 2022 we experimented with joining an online area meeting for worship from the Meeting House. This was very well attended by 100 Friends from Meetings across our area including Ampthill, Bedford, Milton Keynes, Luton, Leighton Buzzard, Harpenden, St Albans and Watford. The Area Meeting is reviewing the success of the worship and we have indicated that we would be happy to join in again in future.

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Friends are invited to come to this talk about the latest climate science and what it means for our children

Berkhamsted Quaker Meeting House, 289 High Street Berkhamsted HP41AJ Feb 15th 19.30-21.30

 You will be given the full story: the risks we’re running, why so little is happening and how we are working together as citizens to change all this. You’ll be made welcome and can share your views in small discussion groups.

If you can’t make it, you can watch the video at:

To talk to us, email:




by | 12th February 2022 · 4:57 am

Supporting the International Work of Quakers

Friends Word Committee logo

The Quaker World Relations Committee (QWRC)  works to make connections between British Quakers and those in other parts of the world.

The Friends World Committee for Consultation (FWCC) group helps bridge Quaker understanding and unity by bringing cultures and Quaker traditions together.  During the pandemic FWCC’s events and information sharing have enabled many British Quakers to connect and worship with Friends across the world.

While QWRC works to expand the experience of Friends by bringing people together from other countries and exposing Friends to Quaker practice in Britain, FWCC does the same for Friends across the world. FWCC presents the face of Friends at the global level through the World Council of Churches, Christian World Communions, the Quaker United Nations Offices, and other faith-based engagement.

FWCC and QWRC worked together to start the FWCC Sustainability Program which has grown to bring our awareness of climate issues in different parts of the world.  Recent Young Adult Friends’ webinars have helped gather their voice to motivate us all to respect all of God’s creation, articulating how we can each be involved in creating climate justice.

We anticipate the next World Plenary Meeting in Southern Africa Yearly Meeting in 2024, preceded by a World Gathering of Young Friends.  During this remarkable opportunity to gather together for worship and fellowship and learning, we will hear about Friends’ experience of apartheid and inequality, gathering an appreciation of this deeply divisive time, re-imagining a new way of being in the world.  Bringing issues of sustainability and equality to the global conversation is very important to British Friends, as we expand our awareness of what it is like for our Quaker brothers and sisters.

FWCC and its small staff depends on Quaker contributions for organizational stability.  During the coronavirus, it is more important than ever that Friends continue to support FWCC’s vital function of strengthening the Religious Society of Friends.  FWCC is grateful for Friends’ ongoing support, which includes a generous annual grant from Britain Yearly Meeting.

Quakers meet in Kenya

FWRC meet in Kenya, 2012. Photo by Trish Carn

You can give directly to the FWCC Co-op Account: 650 10116 00; Sort Code 089061

You can give through the World Office web site:

You can set up a regular amount through your bank.

Gift aid accepted if we have your address.  UK Registered Charity 211647

Thank you for making a financial contribution to the growth and sustainability of FWCC and the Religious Society of Friends.  On behalf of the Quaker World Relations Committee and FWCC, we thank you.

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Welcome to our new updated site

quaker_symbol_buttonWe have migrated from our old site which we felt wasn’t serving members of the meeting and the wider community.

Notices of events and activities of Hemel Hempstead Local Quakers at the Meeting House and other venues will be highlighted here along with other notices.

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