Nacton: Nervous hen Marina lays an egg during pet service

ALL creatures great and small gathered to form a curious service at a town school.

Orwell Park Pre Prep’s annual pet service saw lots of dogs gather alongside a series of excitable pets.

Reverend Helen Davy led the congregation of parents, children and their pets, with a hen called Marina becoming the star of the show by the end of the service.

Surrounded by dogs of all breeds, a nervous Marina took everyone by surprise when she laid an egg in the middle of the service.

Rev Davy told the congregation – also made up of guinea pigs and hamsters – that it wasn’t something that usually happened during her services, but said it was a “wonderful way to show children Gods gift”.

She said the event had been a “lovely experience”.

“I was invited by the school to be part of their special day,” she added “It was a joy to be with the children and their pets and to be part of something they clearly love.

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“There were lots of dogs around, and of course the hen. It was obviously the dogs who made the hen nervous. If you were a hen in that situation I’m sure you would feel the same way – I know I would.”

The congregation was led by headteacher Adrian Brown and his wife Nicole, and the head of the pre prep Jennifer Hillman.

Reverend Canon Geoffrey Grant, who offers pastural care at the school and is known as “The Visitor”, said the church in Nacton has been hosting animal services since 1975.

He said: “We have been doing them for a long time but I do think they have become more popular over the years.

“The village residents, the church and the school now has quite a tradition of animal services.

“There weren’t as many people taking part in the services when it started but I guess people are always giving thanks for their pets and for animals.”

n Has your pet got a special talent? Or do you have a unique animal as a pet? Write to Your Letters, Ipswich Star, 30 Lower Brook Street, IP4 1AN. Alternatively, you can send the IP Plus team an e-mail at