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Freedom Church Back In The News.


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#1 dippyhippy

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Posted 17 January 2015

I meant to post this last night, but forgot!

 

I see that Freedom Church is making headlines once again, for all the wrong reasons. Over at Hereford Times an article states that they have been asked to leave Swansea University Campus, after blitzing it with leaflets, and holding religious services on site.

 

Not the first time their recruitment methods have been questioned. Anyone else remember the campaign which saw lollipops handed out to children outside the school gates? Tactics which at best could be described as showing a complete lack of judgement, at worst, rather sinister.

 

I also seem to recall being told that at one point in the not too distant past, a company whose staff consisted of  several leading lights within this church, had been given a contract to deliver sex education to pupils in some Herefordshire Schools. 

 

I have real concerns about this pay to pray organisation. 

 

How do others feel?


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#2 Colin James

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Posted 17 January 2015

I agree dippy, right weird lot if you ask me but then again I am an atheist so does my opinion still count? lol


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#3 dippyhippy

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Posted 17 January 2015

Of course your opinion counts Colin!!

 

There have been so many concerns raised about this group over the years, and to be honest it wasn't until someone I knew personally, began to get sucked in to this organisation, that I knew much about it.

 

I don't want to say too much, just that this person was at a real low point in their life, and a member of the church began inviting them to lots of church run events.

 

Nothing wrong with that, I hear you say.

 

And I would agree....however, their time began to get completely monopolised by this group, and on the several occasions I suggested I went with them to attend one of these get togethers, the message came back loud and clear, that it was "invitation only."

 

Alarm bells started to ring with me. Discussions about voluntary financial contributions had already been mentioned. I truly felt my friend was being targeted.

 

Luckily my friend listened to my concerns, and took a step back.


Edited by dippyhippy, 17 January 2015 .

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#4 Colin James

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Posted 17 January 2015

Of course your opinion counts Colin!!

 

There have been so many concerns raised about this group over the years, and to be honest it wasn't until someone I knew personally, began to get sucked in to this organisation, that I knew much about it.

 

I don't want to say too much, just that this person was at a real low point in their life, and a member of the church began inviting them to lots of church run events.

 

Nothing wrong with that, I hear you say.

 

And I would agree....however, their time began to get completely monopolised by this group, and on the several occasions I suggested I went with them to attend one of these get togethers, the message came back loud and clear, that it was "invitation only."

 

Alarm bells started to ring with me. Discussions about voluntary financial contributions had already been mentioned. I truly felt my friend was being targeted.

 

Luckily my friend listened to my concerns, and took a step back.

 

Glad to hear that you friend took your advice. I have been informed that it is like a small cult.. money obviously is a good reason for recruiting too.


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#5 dippyhippy

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Posted 17 January 2015

Yes.

 

Hence my "Pay to Pray" description, which I am sure will be told has caused offence to some!

 

I stand by it.


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#6 Colin James

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Posted 17 January 2015

Yes.

 

Hence my "Pay to Pray" description, which I am sure will be told has caused offence to some!

 

I stand by it.

 

Good for you my friend, I tend to agree with your description too but then again I think it is not limited to just this church...


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#7 dippyhippy

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Posted 17 January 2015

Absolutely, Colin.


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Proud to be a tolerant and compassionate tree hugger. Blessed with common decency and humanity. Willing to speak up for those in need. Prepared to challenge the bigoted views which seem to be aired so freely.... 

 

Sending peace and love, to my fellow lefties.


#8 twowheelsgood

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Posted 17 January 2015

Certainly at one time the Council were putting money into this operation under the guise of youth care - whether they still are I don't know. Even the planning permission went against Policy but had ESG as was making a 'special case' for granting it. I know at least one person in Coningsby Court next door who had to sell her home and move to get away from the very loud late night rock music jams. They've also been targeting the Foley Lane campuses with their sweets for kiddies campaign. Freedom to do whatever they want it seems.


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#9 dippyhippy

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Posted 17 January 2015

Thanks for that post, Two Wheels.

 

I seem to recall they were called something like 3 X.L, that isn't right I know, but it was similar to that.


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#10 bobby47

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Posted 17 January 2015

Im a sinner! Yeah I've sinned and despite my many earthly transgressions I've no desire to repent thank you very much. Let these zealots from the Freedom Church stray from the path of righteousness, wander into the Commercial and try to bathe me in the blood of Christ and they'll soon discover, that no matter how many shiney, happy and clappy songs they sing proclaiming I was lost but now I'm found, they ain't got the equipment or the determination to stop me from hurtling downwards toward Hell or if it's at all possible, to the joyous place called Purgatory.
Frankly, passing over and becoming a tiny dot of loving light ain't my idea of an eternity of pleasure. Ending up in some lovely place that has you listening to Handels Messiah and its Halleluzah Chorus every single moment of the time I spend basked in this heavenly light is something which Id rather not endure.
As a dot of loving light and energy you are severely restricted. You can forget the pleasures of the flesh for starters because you've got no limbs to enjoy whatever it is you've chosen to do for the rest of eternity, and as for smoking and supping ale, that's gone forever. All you can do is float around gazing at the pint of ale and your hand rolled cigarette wishing that you'd never repented and found religion.
No! Give me hell and purgatory everytime and if the price I have to pay for being there is that thrice monthly Lucifer decides to buggar me then as far as I'm concerned that's good enough for me. Im more than content with this arrangement and who knows, in good time, I might even look forward to Satan visiting me beneath his cloak of darkness and introducing me to the sins of the flesh.
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#11 Cambo

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Posted 17 January 2015

Gary & heather snowzell started this church.
they live in kingsland also owns a company called soloman property development, last year they pulled a planning application that they had applied for in Leominster.
also this church of there's is a reg charity it would appear from there website that they are looking to conquer the world setting up new churches by disguising them as schools, in Africa & Asia they are also linked with a church in the USA called the new spring church in South Carolina.
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#12 Ubique

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Posted 17 January 2015

It's a very topical and worrying situation , it appears that some of the attendees are being"brainwashed " bordering on Radicalisation , I accept not ( to my knowledge ) for violence but as Dippy said " pay to pray " and not just putting money on a collection tray . If it is a registered Charity perhaps the Charity Commission needs to be looking at their motives - further , it has been suggested that the Council are or have given this " Church" money - hope that it's now stopped .
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#13 Cambo

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Posted 17 January 2015

They set up the freedom church in 2005 registered there development company 30th of march 2006.
Before that they were running a church in a small market town…Leominster maybe? While running a business not sure if that's the same business as the one they have today or a different one?
Like dippy it concerns me when religions use a pay to pray??!!
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#14 Cambo

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Posted 17 January 2015

FREEDOM CHURCH HEREFORD
REACHING OUT INTO THE COMMUNITIES IN HEREFORDSHIRE BY REGULAR, CHALLENGING AND INSPIRING CHURCH SERVICES, COMMUNITY OUTREACHES TO MAKE A DIFFERENCE, INSPIRE, EMPOWER AND EQUIP BELIEVERS TO BE EFFECTIVE IN THEIR COMMUNITIES. BEING A CHURCH FOR THE 21TH CENTURY, RELATING TO PEOPLE IN ALL AGE / SOCIAL GROUPS. OUTREACHES INCLUDE AFRICA AID WHICH RAISES FUNDS FOR CHILDREN / FOOD IN UGANDA.

Charity Number1008459Date Registered1992-02-17Contact NameMRS SUZANNE WENDY CARTER Telephone01432 266800Address21 UPPER FIELD CLOSE, HEREFORD, HR2 7SWWebsitehttp://www.freedomch...church.ccSocial NetworkingFacebookTrusteesMR JEREMY LAMONBY, MR CHRIS COOKE LEADERSHIP, MARK DIJKENSOther NamesAFRICA RENEWAL MINISTRIES, HEART FOR AFRICA, NEW LIFE COMMUNITY CHURCHCharity Commission ClassificationsOTHER CHARITABLE PURPOSES, OTHER CHARITABLE ACTIVITIES, THE GENERAL PUBLIC/MANKIND, CHILDREN/YOUNG PEOPLE, EDUCATION/TRAINING, RELIGIOUS ACTIVITIESIcnpo ClassificationsReligious congregations and associationsGoverning DocumentDECLARATION OF TRUST DATED 30/12/1991 AS AMENDED ON 16/02/2011;
Basic accounts
Accounts date Income Spending More info
31 Mar 2009 £139,638 £164,057 full accounts
31 Mar 2008 £196,388 £182,667 full accounts
31 Mar 2007 £165,285 £122,220
31 Mar 2006 £93,590 £33,315 full accounts
31 Mar 2005 £103,135 £27,239
see more

Related links

FREEDOM CHURCH HEREFORD on Charity Commission website
Search Google for FREEDOM CHURCH HEREFORD

Last updated: 17 January 2015
- See more at: http://opencharities...h.SxE59llZ.dpuf
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#15 greenknight

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Posted 17 January 2015

I think this outfit bought a pub near Leominster with an eye on developing the land. The locals and council stood firm and eventually they sold it on. The pub is open again which is great news.
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#16 megilleland

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Posted 17 January 2015

The organisation is registered as a charity with an income of £498,000. More details here. They have links with this American church who have provided funds for them.

 

In 2010 the Academy students were instrumental in building a link with a church in South Carolina, USA, called NewSpring Church. Over the last year this relationship has grown in quality and commitment. On two occasions NewSpring has given a substantial gift to Freedom Church in order to promote the work that Freedom is doing in reaching other nations. In Februay 2013, they announced that they would be offering sufficent financial support to continue to strengthen the staffing infrastucture of Freedom over the coming months and years. The Freedom Church Trustees are incredibly grateful for and humbled by this support.

Edited by megilleland, 17 January 2015 .

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#17 dippyhippy

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Posted 17 January 2015

The Hereford Times wrote an article on this a few years ago.

 

Reasons for concern then....

 

           *Brainwashing youngsters with "aggressive" Christian fundamentalism.

                                             

            *Mass Baptisms.

                                            

            *Arranged marriages.

 

In a video, Gary Snowzell is shown congratulating two newly wed teenage church goers. He says "If I can multiply this, then we can start storming nations. We start causing change."

 

He also advices young people to go to them for relationship advice, not their friends or parents as "They aren't great examples" and "Come from different backgrounds."

 

If my memory serves me correctly, it was around this time that they were being funded by the council for their "Youth Work."


Edited by dippyhippy, 17 January 2015 .

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Sending peace and love, to my fellow lefties.


#18 dippyhippy

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Posted 17 January 2015

There are also many posts on "The Student Room" blog, relating to the targeting of first year University students.


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#19 dippyhippy

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Posted 17 January 2015

Thanks for the info Cambo and Megilleland. Interesting stuff is it not??


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#20 Cambo

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Posted 17 January 2015

Solomon property Development

Financial Summary

2013-03-31 2014-03-31
CASH AT BANK £8,606 £11,913
CURRENT ASSETS £234,004 £664,097
CURRENT LIABILITIES £71,363 £325,078

SEE FULL ACCOUNTS FILING
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#21 megilleland

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Posted 17 January 2015

I can't see this is any different to politics where the masses vote for the party which says it will lead them to the promised land and then dumps them in desert. Maybe this is where the million voters Milliband says are lost have turned to for succour - its a big market. The young are obviously going to be attracted to it and that is the approach these churches take judging by their websites. I notice there is mention to participants becoming change agents on their leadership courses.


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#22 dippyhippy

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Posted 17 January 2015

Just found this.....

 

   "Hereford Futures, the company set up by Herefordshire Council to deliver a range of improvements in the city, has agreed to safeguard the position of the Freedom Church as part of a development of 800 new homes close to new retail and leisure attractions, like the new multiplex cinema planned for 2012. "The Freedom Church  is very much a church for the future, which has quickly proved to be a positive force in Hereford, reaching out to young people in ways the authorities cannot" said Jonathon Bretherton, chief executive of Hereford Futures."

 

Then further in the same article...

 

 "On Friday nights, a team from the church can often be seen in the early hours working with the police in Herefords High Town, armed with cakes, lollipops and the settees from their café, talking to young people about alcohol, drugs, bullying, unemployment and sexual health."

 

And finally.....

 

 

A quote from Perry Noble, the pastor at New Springs..."Maybe there would be less homosexuality in the world today if there were less greedy Christians who actually cared enough to tithe and spread the Gospel?"

 

 

How very progressive. Not.

 

There is plenty more in this article, to be found on Anorak.


Edited by dippyhippy, 17 January 2015 .

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#23 megilleland

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Posted 17 January 2015

Article in the Hereford Times about Council's links with youth project. They didn't take much attention as they gave the organisation £14,500 several months later (10th August 2011 to 2xl Youth Projects Ltd), Mr Snowzell was a director of this body. Council also paid £1.700 21st January 2011.
 
First published Monday 21 March 2011 in News
 

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#24 bobby47

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Posted 17 January 2015

Bloody Bretherton! A bucket of sludge upon his head and a curse on his Council Allotment. He's bloody everywhere! My God! You'd think he'd clear off, reduce his cholesterol level to a point that when read on the graph showed him to be more human than swine and keep his bloody hands off areas of bloody business he has no responsibility for.
The bloody man was once even trying to involve himself in the development of the two ends of me bloody football ground at Edgar Street. He's a bloody menace. Yes he is and I'll defend any man or woman who agrees with me. Bloody Bretherton!
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#25 Cambo

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Posted 17 January 2015

It is very interesting dippy!
I see 2013 2 trustees resigned & 2 new ones appointed?

FREEDOM CHURCH
REPORT OF THE TRUSTEES FOR THE YEAR ENDED 31 MARCH 2013
ACHIEVEMENT AND PERFORMANCE
Campus expansion
Over the preceding 18 months, Freedom Church had launched new campuses in Cardiff, Kampala, Bristol and Brugge. Cardiff, Kampala and Brugge have all stabilised and built stronger foundations over the last year. They now all have local leadership structures and are entirely led by locally raised leaders. In fact in February 2013, the original church planting Campus Pastors from the UK handed on the role to a local Ugandan couple. This is very encouraging, and has brought those campuses to a place where they are poised for greater growth.
During this period of consolidation and infrastructure development, we have continued to see growth in attendance at all venues. From overall attendance in March 2011 of 235 per Sunday, it rose to 400 in 2012, and now 500+ in 2013. The signs are very encouraging that this expansion will continue.

New Campus
In January 2013 Freedom Church launched an additional international Campus, in Siem Reap, Cambodia. Siem Reap is the second city of Cambodia, and has the largest international airport because of a huge tourist industry, (two million visitors per year). This is Freedom's first full Campus in Asia. The location was birthed out of a long-standing relationship with the city / nation.

Extensions
The Bristol campus struggled and the decision was ultimately taken to close it. A lot of learning came from this venture, including understanding the value of having a small group 'in situ' prior to a campus launch. From this came the idea of Freedom Extensions. An Extension is a small group meeting in a specific location, that accesses Freedom resources via web platforms and a video links. Their intention is to grow to become a full campus expression of church in their locality. An Extension is very flexible and could meet in a home, an office or a hired room. In the last year, pilot Extensions have been launched in Swansea; Odessa, Ukraine; Singapore; and Suva, Fiji.
Between Campuses and Extensions, there are now Freedom Church locations meeting in seven countries, on four continents. This is an extraordinary development.

Media
Last year the ability to put subtitles on preaches for non-English speaking venues was developed. With the launch of Freedom Siem Reap, a new facility had to be created of 'dropping' voice-overs onto preaches. Written materials are now being translated into Khmer, (for Cambodia).
Worship and Production teams
Vibrant, relevant worship is at the heart of any Freedom Church location. Such was the quality of songs being written, and musicianship developed, that a major recording was done in September 2012. 'Everything Changes' is a live recording that utilises Freedom Church singers and musicians and entirely 'home written' material. This recording has resourced all of the Freedom locations, but is also being used in a number of other settings. It has had very strong critical acclaim in the Christian music press.

Equipment
A consequence of the Campus and Extension expansion programme was the need to purchase further technical, sound and lighting equipment. A move to 'live editing' of the preaches was made possible by the purchase of a 'live editing' suite.
For the Everything Changes recording, new 'in-ear' technology was purchased and is now used every week in our Hereford Campus. This has enabled a new level of excellence to be reached for our central band and points to a new direction for each of our Campuses.

Freedom Academy
The main avenue for raising and training young leaders has become the Freedom Academy. In 2010, nine young people applied to this. In 2011 this rose to 13, and in 2012 it rose again to 16. This year, that figure climbed again to 23 young people. Many of the graduates of the last three years are now helping to launch campuses and extensions, and carry responsibilities in leading teams within those campuses.
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#26 dippyhippy

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Posted 17 January 2015

Bloody Hell!

 

My memory is better than I gave it credit for!

 

So, it was called 2 XL.....and I remembered it as 3 XL....! I knew it was something like that!

 

And Mr Snowzell was a director.

 

Thanks for this Megilleland. For a moment, I was questioning my own recollection of events.

 

I have to say, I really don't think this group should have ever been in receipt of council money for this "work".

 

They clearly have another agenda.


Edited by dippyhippy, 17 January 2015 .

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#27 dippyhippy

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Posted 17 January 2015

.....and yes, Bobby. You are correct. Bretherton was everywhere. He was in places he had no business being in. Unfortunately, the fall out from his stint in power will cast a shadow for a long time to come.


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Proud to be a tolerant and compassionate tree hugger. Blessed with common decency and humanity. Willing to speak up for those in need. Prepared to challenge the bigoted views which seem to be aired so freely.... 

 

Sending peace and love, to my fellow lefties.


#28 Cambo

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Posted 17 January 2015

Yes Bretherton is like a recurring nightmare that won't go away for us…but it's sounds like he was the cash messiah for this church??!!

Edited by Cambo, 17 January 2015 .

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#29 Cambo

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Posted 17 January 2015

FREEDOM CHURCH
REPORT OF THE TRUSTEES FOR THE YEAR ENDED 31 MARCH 2013
ACHIEVEMENT AND PERFORMANCE

The fast and radical expansion of the church has necessitated a complimentary strengthening of the church's infrastructure. Freedom Cardiff became the first of the new campuses to put Coaches into place, thereby underpinning the small group structure there.
Directors have now been employed in many key departments of the church's life. These include Directors for Finance, Youth, Children, Creative, Volunteers and Systems. This has involved a major financial commitment, but has very effectively underpinned the church working in seven countries and in four languages.

NewSpring Church

In 2010 the Academy students were instrumental in building a link with a church in South Carolina, USA, called NewSpring Church. Over the last year this relationship has grown in quality and commitment. On two occasions NewSpring has given a substantial gift to Freedom Church in order to promote the work that Freedom is doing in reaching other nations. In February 2013, they announced that they would be offering sufficient financial support to continue to strengthen the staffing infrastructure of Freedom over the coming months and years. The Freedom Church Trustees are incredibly grateful for and humbled by this support.

Future plans

It is envisaged that 2014 will be a year of growth upon the strong foundations and structures that have been built in 2013. There are, however, no new campus plants planned at this time. Initial negotiations are being held that would see the purchase being made of a further building that will enable a significant expansion in Freedom Church's activities, and a step-change in the size of the Freedom Academy. These and other as yet unseen developments hold great promise for the coming year.

ON BEHALF OF THE BOARD :
Mr C R Cooke - Trustee 13 January 2014
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#30 Denise Lloyd

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Posted 17 January 2015

If you use Company Check it's free call up Freedom Church etc you get the list of directors press a name and it takes you onto other directorships the person holds - lots of interesting names - they certainly get around!!


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