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Crewe church reopening - but coronavirus safety measures means parishioners have to book to worship

An Anglican church in Crewe is preparing to reopen for public worship this weekend - but parishioners are required to book in advance if they want to attend.

St Mary the Virgin in Wistaston has revealed they will be reopening to the public each Sunday in September following months of closure due to the coronavirus pandemic, but it will be 'far from' a return to normal.

Information on the church blog says that services will be 'very different' to before, with limited numbers, mandatory face coverings and no singing just some of the big changes.

And due to the limited space, attendance will be strictly via a pre-booking system, meaning parishioners will not be able to simply turn up.

Initially, priority will be given to those who do not have access to online worship, and letters have been sent to those who fall into that category.

ector Revd Mike Turnbull from St Mary's admitted how hard it was for him to close the church as the UK went into lockdown back in March.

He said: "Closing St Mary's and St Luke's back in March was a very emotional thing for me to have to do and I didn't foresee how long it would take to reopen them.

"Like many of us, I thought that this pandemic would be over in a couple of months and things would return to normal, how wrong we were! We now talk of a 'new normal' and, for those of us who've been out and about, we understand what this means in all aspects of our lives and that it will remain so for some time.

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