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The Vicar of the River

The Vicar of the River

The Dipper

Web Dipper


What does a Vicar, a River Dipper and two Standard Poodles have in common? A shaggy dog story….

We have recently sponsored a wonderful event at the Hay Festival Winter Weekend. Held at St Mary’s Church, Hay on Wye, our event was one of the first in the programme and a sell out. It was a quite magical, extraordinary and eccentric evening. Our local Vicar, Father Richard Williams played the Bevington organ in accompaniment to a screening of Murnau’s classic 1922, silent, black and white Dracula film, Nosferatu.

Father Richard is an accomplished organist and composer, having studied music at Trinity, London. He is also the proud owner of two exceptionally fine Standard Poodles, a white lady called Daisy, and a black dog called Moby. As a thank you for giving us such a wonderful recital and for being our loyal Parish Priest since 2001, we made and presented him with a pair of lovely white leather dog collars, so our Vicar and his fine brace of dogs can now all wear a dog collar!

Apart from his musicality, spirituality and love of dogs, Father Richard is also an enthusiastic promotor of Save the River Wye,
which is in a tragic state of decline from pollution. Father Richard can often be seeing walking his magnificent dogs along the banks of the Wye, which led me to think of him as the ‘Vicar of the River’. This name is shared with the Dipper, also know as the ‘Vicar of the River’.  This small, brown native bird has a fine white collar and bib, just like Father Richard! The Dipper, smaller than a Blackbird, may be seen in the cleanest, most well-oxygenated waters, swimming under the current near waterfalls, feeding off small crustrations and freshwater shrimps, all of which need clean water.
It is no surprise that Father Richard is such an advocate for a cleaner river, he is, after all, the ‘Vicar of the River’.

As a postscript I found a quote of Father Richards ‘I would rather be a poodle in the house of my God, than to dwell in the tents of ungodliness.’

Listen to Father Richard playing his Bevington organ in St Mary’s Church, Hay on Wye

Athene English

We make and source beautiful things from natural materials

We are specialists in hand made Leather goods including studded Dog Collars and wallets from 200 year old Russian Reindeer Leather; offering for sale a range of ethical tailored Clothing and wool knitwear and a collection of useful but beautiful Homeware made from HornLeatherWool: old and new Welsh blankets and textiles; Slate and Wood . As well as an eclectic selection of one-off collectibles in our Originals section

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