Vicar bikes around neighbourhood with mic and loudspeakers to share Gospel during lockdown

Pat Allerton on the streets of Notting Hill with his mic(Photo: Instagram/The Telegraph)

A London vicar is biking around his neighbourhood with a microphone and loudspeakers to bring mobile church services to people confined to their homes because of the coronavirus lockdown.

Pat Allerton, also known as the Portabello Priest, has been sharing the Gospel with residents at home in the Notting Hill area since the lockdown started last month. 

He had been driving around the neighbourhood but he told the Associated Press that he now uses a bike so that he can incorporate his loudspeaker ministry into the daily hour of exercise permitted under social distancing regulations.

Allerton has rented a cargo bike to cart his kit around his parish of Notting Hill(Photo: Instagram/The Telegraph)

"I'm carrying quite a bit of weight, as you can see, with the speakers and the generator so I'm fully independent, and I just get out and cycle and get around the parish and round about local streets looking to bring a bit of hope," he said. 

Allerton, vicar of St Peter's, simply parks up, shares a brief message and plays the hymn Amazing Grace before inviting residents to join him in saying the Lord's Prayer. 

Dan Pratt, a Notting Hill local, was out for a run when he encountered Allerton.  That chance encounter came after a difficult few days losing his grandfather to coronavirus. 

"It was a bit emotional for me, but it was really, really good," he told the AP. "That has really really helped me, I say, given the loss of my grandfather and what's going on."

Allerton told The Telegraph that he had worried he might be pelted with eggs for his street preaching.  

"But actually everyone's very kind," he told the newspaper.  "It's had an amazingly positive response.  People clap, they whoop ... I've been asked for an encore once."