Led by a team of Elders, and currently seeking a Church Related Community Worker to join the team to help develop our ministry and outreach into our local community.
Mrs Val Morrison
46 Cantley Lane, Bessacarr, Doncaster, DN4 6ND
Click here to email Val
For all Baptisms, Weddings and Funerals please contact
the Secretary by telephone or e-mail
The church is registered to offer full marriage services
to same-sex couples.
We also have extensive premises available for hire.
These include two halls and several smaller rooms.
Each hall has a kitchen attached and available.
All our premises have access for the disabled.
FOR HIRE OF HALLS AND ROOMS
please contact Mrs Val Morrison on 01302 530109
or click here to e-mail Val
Our church is in the centre of Doncaster.
It is only ten minutes walk along the High Street
from the railway station and travel interchange
Click here for map and enter post code DN1 3NG
Now you know where we are, why not pay us a visit?
You will be most welcome
Weekly Services every Sunday at 11.00am
Why not come and join us?
The Sacrament of Holy Communion is celebrated at morning worship
on the first Sunday of each month
Hall Gate United Reformed Church is one of two United Reformed churches in the town
It is situated at the southern end of the town centre on Hall Gate, which is the old
Great North Road and one of the main thoroughfares out of Doncaster to the south.
Our address : Hall Gate United Reformed Church, Hall Gate, Doncaster, DN1 3NG
We also have a sister church in Intake, Doncaster
(For further details, search the Yorkshire Synod website)
Our Mission and Ministry
We are a joint pastorate with our sister United Reformed Church in Intake. Although we are two autonomous congregations, we seek to work more closely together.
Many of our services are led by experienced lay people from both congregations including United Reformed Church nationally accredited lay preachers.
We offer a fairly traditional style of worship although occasionally we experiment with differing forms of worship,
- We seek to be a Reformed Church, united under Christ in worship, care and service
- We will ground our common life together on the Bible and prayer
- We look to the past with thankfulness and to the future with hope
- We will be a church for the whole of Doncaster, gathered as disciples, scattered as servants, to the glory of God alone
- We seek to work ecumenically where-ever possible, and in partnership with other faith groups, statutory and voluntary agencies in the belief that we can achieve more in partnership than we can in working alone
We seek to serve, help and support those with skills, qualifications and experience who work with the town centre ‘community’ – whether church members, local charities or professional agencies. As part of our desire to be a community church we offer our premises at preferential rates for those who work to support those who are disadvantaged in our society.
This includes allowing Doncaster Street Pastors to use our Coffee Lounge as their base whenever they are out patrolling the town centre during the night tine economy. Scroll down for their report for 2018.
We have worked with the homeless and disadvantaged since 1990. This continues to be our main outreach, through a new mission project called Gateway at Hall Gate.
Gateway at Hall Gate is our weekly drop-in for the homeless and vulnerable, which is held every Thursday in the church hall from 10.00 am to 11.30 am. Scroll down for further details.
In addition, as a church, we support Doncaster Food Bank with monthly collections of produce, and Operation Christmas Child, though which we have sent over one thousand Christmas shoe boxes to needy children in other countries.
Education and Development
A small group led by one of the leaders of the House Group which meets to study the Word of God in a relaxed and pleasant atmosphere, meeting approximately monthly in the afternoons. It is held during the daytime to enable people who do not wish to come out at night to engage in bible study, and would welcome more members.
Meetings of the House Group begin by sharing in prayer concerns – for the whole church family and others known to the group – and for situations in the world. It meets monthly in the evening in the homes of members, and seeks to give members the opportunity to learn and speak about their faith. Involvement in the House Group challenges members to apply what they talk about to their daily lives, and to grow to know God’s will.
Gateway at Hall Gate
A weekly drop-in for homeless and vulnerable people
Every Thursday morning from 10.00 am to 11.30 am in the Church Hall
For almost 28 years, we at Hall Gate United Reformed Church ran a Sunday morning drop-in service in the church halls serving homeless and vulnerable people, offering breakfast, hot showers, fresh clothes and a limited laundry service. Free gospels and other supporting Christian booklets were available, together with an opportunity for people to request prayers which were then included in the Sunday prayers of intercession, and emailed to a small prayer support group.
Recent increases in homelessness, together with an increase in dependency on drugs and/or alcohol amongst vulnerable people, led to a corresponding increase of both church and secular groups offering food to homeless people in the town. This gave rise to a concern amongst the volunteers who staffed our breakfast service that they were simply giving people a ‘hand-out’ as opposed to a much-needed ‘hand-up’ into a better lifestyle.
As a result, the church closed its Sunday morning breakfast service, and opened ‘Gateway at Hall Gate’, a drop-in for homeless and vulnerable people offering hot showers, fresh clothes and a limited laundry service as before, but now only with soup, a hot drink and biscuits. Free gospels, Christian booklets and prayer requests are also still available.
In addition, through links that the church has made over the past 28 years with various agencies which work with homeless people, at ‘Gateway at Hall Gate’ there is now the opportunity for service users to be put in contact with outreach workers from a number of agencies providing drugs and alcohol services, together with Doncaster Council’s housing services and their Complex Lives team. In this way, we aim to provide a gateway into hope, and a means of progressing into accommodation and a more fulfilling life.
Pop-up Hubs at Gateway
An exciting new development took place in July 2018 when ‘Gateway at Hall Gate’ worked alongside a group of 15 different organisations and statutory bodies in Doncaster in a ‘Pop-up Hub’ in the church hall. Organised by Aspire, Doncaster’s commissioned Drug and Alcohol Service, and working in partnership with the church, it aimed to help those less fortunate in the borough to try and turn their lives around.
Open from 9.30am to 2pm, the Hub had 28 people attend, many of whom received support and advice from experts including financial assistance, housing support, wound care and help to tackle addiction and mental health issues.
Each person received a bespoke assessment of their general health by a GP. They received medical treatment if needed and wound care treatment. They also were given advice and support to make benefit claims.
‘Gateway at Hall Gate’ offered hot showers and fresh clothes, a drink and biscuits as usual.
The event had the support of Doncaster Council and South Yorkshire Police, who provided support in encouraging street beggars to attend.
Since then, a Pop-up Hub operated for several months at Gateway on the first Thursday of every month, offering medical treatment and wound care, housing advice, drugs and alcohol and mental health support as well as the hot showers and fresh clothes offered by Gateway.
Following initiatives from Doncaster Council, including the establishment of its very successful Complex Lives Initiative, and the enactment of a Public Space Protection Order in the town centre, many homeless people have been moved on into accommodation, and the immediate need for Pop-up Hub has diminished.
Nevertheless, our church remains committed to supporting homeless people in this way, and is ready to work in similar partnership schemes in the future should the need arise.
Emergency Severe Weather arrangements
For the winter of 2018-2019, our church hall was designated an Emergency Night Shelter as part of Doncaster Council’s Severe Weather provision for homeless people. The Council had a range of measures in place, which met the need without our hall being called in to use. A similar arrangement will be made for the winter 2019
Report from Doncaster Street Pastors 2018
We began 2018 with 17 Street Pastors, and over the year we lost one and gained two. There were times when it was a struggle to put out a team on every Saturday night, let alone those extra nights – bank holiday Sundays, race nights during Leger week, Mad Friday and others.
We have not patrolled inside the race course again this year. The new management there seems not to wish to offer an invitation, which in some ways is fortunate as our low number of Street Pastors would have made this very difficult to accept.
Nevertheless, we have continued to be able to deploy at 10.00 pm every Saturday night, and additionally on four Bank Holiday Sundays, and on Ladies Day during Leger week. Once again, we will be out on Mad Friday (the Friday before Christmas Day) and on New Year’s Eve.
Our shortage of female Street Pastors is creating difficulty in deploying a mixed-sex team every patrol, but so far, we have managed to do so
Prayer Pastors and Prayer Partners
Our Prayer Pastors faithfully support the team of Street Pastors in prayer for the duration of each patrol. Two more of our female volunteers have transferred from being Street Pastors to being a Prayer Pastors, and the team of Prayer Pastors is augmented by three Street Pastors who volunteer when not needed to patrol.
Our shortage of Prayer Pastors means that now more often than not there is only one Prayer Pastor available, and they operate from home.
Nevertheless, we are encouraged by the large number of Prayer Partners who have committed to regularly praying for or ministry. Thank you all ever so much.
One of our more experienced Street Pastor has been trained and has joined the ‘South Yorkshire Response Pastor Team’
Several of our Response Pastors have taken part in a number of training exercises, though fortunately there have been no calls to respond to major incidents or emergencies over the last twelve months, though one Response Pastor did deploy to Manchester on the anniversary of the bombing of the Manchester Arena on 22nd May 2017
As Deputy Coordinator for South Yorkshire Response Pastors, Rod Morrison continues to attend the bi-monthly meetings of the Human Assist Group of the Local Response Forum.
Street Pastors in Doncaster continue to have excellent working relationships with the Police, Doncaster Council, especially its Public Health team, the teams who staff the NHS First Responder Car, the licensees and managers of the pubs and clubs, and the door security staff.
As coordinator, Rod Morrison meets with Doncaster Police Street Safe Team every week to review the previous week-end and set priorities for policing the night time economy for the coming week-end.
We continue to thank God for the support we receive from the police, through the provision of First Aid training, their weekly briefing of the team before they go out on patrol, and especially for their active support when the teams are dealing with difficult incidents, and the constant monitoring by the police CCTV operators whenever we are on patrol in the town centre.
We have worked with that department to try to establish a Safe Haven in the town centre on certain ‘high density activity’ nights.
The latest attempt saw the erection of a DMBC gazebo on Hall Gate during Leger Week, and Doncaster Street Pastors provided two volunteers to help staff it on the two nights it operated.
We hope and pray that this initiative will not lose ground, and appropriate provision can be made for those times when it could be needed.
We continue to have a good rapport with the revellers with whom we inter-act through offering practical help to those who may otherwise be vulnerable.
We feel that that the centre of Doncaster is not as busy on Saturday nights as it used to be when we first started, and that would seem to be a trend throughout the country. But in many ways, this last year has been much like any other.
Are things getting quieter?
Rather than presenting lots of statistics for the last 12 months, I thought it might be informative to look at some average data for a patrol over three different years.
|Average numbers per patrol||2012||2015||2018|
|bottles of water issued||7.9||5.8||5.6|
|anti-social incidents attended||0.3||0.3||0.5|
|other incidents attended||4.1||3.7||2.8|
|number of first aid provided||0.7||0.8||0.5|
|number of people helped||30.0||22.1||14.9|
|number of contacts||32.9||32.3||29.0|
We will continue walking the streets – caring, listening, and helping – through flip-flops, water, first aid, and accompanying vulnerable people to safety – but not forgetting that our core reason for our ministry is to take the Gospel out on to the streets.
Please pray that we may discover new and more exciting ways in which we can fulfil this ministry, and that our training alongside Street Pastors from Barnsley, Rotherham and Sheffield will reflect this. Let’s also pray that the regular ‘Refresher Course’ for those who have been Street Pastors for some time will truly refresh us for our task.
Rod Morrison, Coordinator, December 2018