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19the November 2002, 12:35 GMT
Polperro - my parish
Father William Brabener
Father William Brabener by the harbour

Father William Braviner moved from an urban area of Lancashire to the village of Polperro.

He loves working in the village and finsd rural life throws up its fair share of challenges.

Polperro's website
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+ Father William Braviner is the vicar for the parish of Polperro.

+ The vicar moved to Polperro from the urban parish of Oldham in Lancashire.

+ The area keeps the vicar busy dealing with day to day rural issues.
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Father William Braviner is a Lancastrian who has fallen in love with Polperro. He had worked in Lancashire for a few years before he was advised to make a move to Cornwall.

"I have a friend who is a vicar in Launceston and he persuaded me to apply for parishes in Cornwall about four years ago. Polperro didn't have a vicar at the time so I was invited to apply."

Before he took up his position in Polperro Father William kept busy with his parish in Oldham, Lancashire. He found a move from an urban area to a rural village had many new challenges.

"There is a huge difference to move to Cornwall," he says. "With Polperro it is lovely you can really get to know everyone which can be really great. Although it can sometimes take half an hour to walk 100 yards!"

Father William Brabener
Father William is happy with his life in Polperro

Father William Braviner now looks after seven churches in an area stretching several thousand acres.

"I cover eveything from here almost up to Liskeard except I don't cover Looe," he says.

"The big difficulty with an area like Polperro is employment. There is a lot of seasonal work so in the winter there are many people without jobs and very little money. In the fishing industry if you don't catch anything you don't make any money. The poverty issue is quite acute."

"Although there are a lot of people who have second homes here and who have money, there are not here all the time," he explains.

Houses by the harbour in Polperro
Although picturesque Polperro has poverty issues

Being a vicar in a rural area keeps Father William Braviner very busy.

"I try to act as an advocate for people with financial problems or other difficulties that arise from living in a rural area," he says. "Because my background is in finance I can talk the language so I am able to help people in the area."

He might not get a lot of spare time but Father William would not change his job.

"Looking out of the window and seeing the sea is amazing," he smiles. "Sometimes I am driving around and looking at the amazing view and I have to pinch myself to believe I really work here."

"The genuiness of the people is amazing," says Father Braviner. " I was told before I moved here nothing impresses the Cornish fishermen which is why a lot of celebrities like to come here. Everybody is treated the same which is great."

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