The Ouse Valley Benefice

Bexwell + Crimplesham + Denver + Hilgay

Ryston + Southery + Ten Mile Bank

Welcome to the Ouse Valley Benefice

Welcome to the Ouse Valley Benefice - a group of Churches in West Norfolk that are part of the Diocese of Ely. The Benefice comprises seven rural villages and their churches in or close to the Norfolk fens: Bexwell, Crimplesham, Denver, Hilgay, Ryston, Southery, and Ten Mile Bank. The Benefice came into existence in January 2022 succeeding several earlier groupings to make more coherent geographical sense.

Meet Our Vicar

The Revd Nigel Moat has recently joined us after being inducted by Bishop Dagmar, Bishop of Huntingdon, in July. He joins us from the West Norfolk Priory Group where he served as Curate. Nigel and his wife Heidi have grown to love West Norfolk and are really excited to serve here in the Ouse Valley Benefice.

Prior to being ordained, Nigel worked in the electronics and software industry, but followed his calling to ordination - he trained initially in the Diocese of Lincoln, and then in the Diocese of Ely following his marriage to Heidi.

The Vicar in Las Vegas

One of my hobbies is doing magic tricks for my grandchildren. It’s also a helpful way to capture childrens attention when I go into schools. Knowing I follow a number of magicians on social media, my youngest son recently surprised me with a trip to Las Vegas to see one of my favourite magicians - an unforgettable experience.

Despite its bright lights, glamour and nightlife, I have to admit that my visit was also humbling. Alongside wealthy tourists staying in luxury hotels, I saw the hardships of many who call Las Vegas home. I was moved with compassion for the individuals I saw on the streets struggling with addiction, homelessness, and poverty. I wasn’t there long enough to understand how faith communities in Las Vegas are reaching out to people beyond their vast buildings, but I am sure they are. It is no doubt that Vegas is a place of extremes - a city of excess in the heart of the desert. 

Ash Wednesday, my first service after arriving back in the UK, couldn’t have been a greater contrast to my trip. Lent is a time when traditionally Christians ‘fast’ in some way as a spiritual discipline and as a reminder of our dependence on God. Before his public ministry, Jesus was tempted in the wilderness with everything the world could offer him - food, riches and power. Instead of giving in to these things, he modelled to us the importance of trusting God and only serving him. 

During our lent journey this year I’d like to encourage us all to be open to letting the Holy Spirit challenge us about our desires, priorities and resources. Maybe God wants to test us outside of our comfort zones. If Jesus was ministering in Las Vegas today, where would we find him? 

With gratitude and blessings (and a few more magic tricks up my sleeve!), Revd Nigel Moat

PCC Day - Saturday 25th March

We have now confirmed the date for this year's PCC day based on the responses we have received in terms of availability. This will be held on Saturday 25th March starting at 10am at Hilgay Village Hall (coffee will be available from 9.30 am). To register for the day, please complete the form on the PCC Day webpage or contact Revd Nigel.

Waslingham Pilgrimage

As in previous years a group of pilgrims will be visiting two of our churches as the journey to Waslingham on Wednesday April 5th. They will be at St Mark’s Church Ten Mile Bank at around 2.15pm. Please come along to support them as they pray for the future of St Mark’s. They will then arrive at St Mary’s Church Denver at around 4.30pm. For the Denver visit we are providing hospitality so if you are able to help out please speak to Linden Leeke. Linden would also be grateful if anyone can provide cold puddings.

Confirmation Service - Sunday May 28th at 11am

I am delighted to say that Bishop Stephen is coming to St Mary’s Church Crimplesham for a confirmation service on Sunday May 28th at 11am. This will be an additional benefice service so that we can all support the candidates from around the Ouse Valley Benefice who are being confirmed.

If you would also like to be confirmed - or you know of anyone who does - please speak to Revd Nigel so that we can arrange a confirmation course for all the candidates.

Deepening Your Relationship with Jesus

You will find some links below to various resources that you might use to deepen your relationship with Jesus. If you would like to suggest some other resources please let us know!

A free bible app that is available online and on your smart phone.

The daily prayer app from the Church of England.

A free daily devotional with Bible teachings.

Pray consistently for the people and causes you care about. 

Crimplesham Bells

The National Bell Tower Registry says that Crimplesham has a ring of 5 bells (full-circle ring) and that the tenor bell (the heaviest and number 5) weighs 706lb, or 320kg, is in note “B”, has a diameter of 32.25” and is dated 1798. The bells were last overhauled by John Taylor & Co. in 1838.

Ryston Hall Snowdrop Walk

Ryston Hall held their annual snowdrop walk on Sunday 12th February. They would like to thank everyone who supported the event. It was such a pleasure to see you all and we hope you all enjoyed it. Please keep checking their facebook page and website for any future events.   

News and Events

For all our latest news and events, please see our News and Events page which is regularly updated.

You can also catch up on all the latest information in our monthly newsletter. Click the button below to see the latest edition.

Baptisms, Wedding and Funerals.

If you would like to arrange a baptism, wedding or funeral in any of our churches, please see out Life Events pages. There you will find more information about how these can be arranged. For baptisms we would like to point you in the direction of our baptism coordinator who will guide you through the process. For weddings, your first point of call would be our Vicar, the Revd Nigel Moat. Funerals would normally be arranged via your chosen funeral director - but equally, you can contact Revd Nigel directly if you would like more information.

Online Service

Some of our services from Bexwell can be found online. Everyone is more than welcome to join us. Please see the calendar for the online services - the zoom link and Meeting ID's can be found in the calendar entries for each. If you have any problems accessing the zoom service please drop as a line by contacting is using this online form.

Daily Prayer from the Church of England

You can catch up with the Church of England daily prayer here.