PARISHIONERS were delighted to be able to celebrate mass at St Mary's Catholic Church in Middlewich for the first time in almost four months.

Coronavirus regulations mean that only 50 people can attend each mass and everyone must follow new health and safety guidelines.

Throughout lockdown mass has been streamed so people could take part at home.

Deacon Chris Wells told parishioners: "It was great to see so many of you at mass this weekend and wonderful to be able to receive the Eucharist. It is clear that a significant number of parishioners are still shielding."

Parish priest Fr Peter Dutton celebrated mass on Sunday with help from deacons Chris Wells and Tony Ford.

Mass is now open to the public every day at St Mary's on a first come first served basis.

Three masses are being held at the weekend including 6.30pm on Saturday and 9am and 11am on Sunday. The 11am mass will continue to be streamed so parishioners who are shielding can join in from home.

Winsford Guardian:

Parishioners can now attend mass at St Mary's Catholic Church in Middlewich provided they follow new coronavirus regulations

Parishioners must wear face masks and follow strict regulations.

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Masses are shorter than usual and the Eucharist can only be received in the hand.

No singing is allowed and everyone must remain one metre apart, except members of the same household.

Everyone must sanitise their hands as they come into church down the side aisles.

Stewards will be on hand to guide people as seats will be allocated and everyone must leave using the centre aisle.

After each mass parishioners will be asked to leave promptly and church will have to be closed and thoroughly cleaned in preparation for the next mass.