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Who's Who

Bishops, Archdeacons and the Dean

pictureBishop of Chester- The Rt Revd Dr Peter Forster
I was born in Birmingham and educated at Tudor Grange Grammar School for Boys, Solihull, and Merton College, Oxford, where I read chemistry. I subsequently read theology at Edinburgh University. I was later awarded the degree of Doctor of Philosophy for studies in St Irenaeus, a theologian and Bishop of Lyons in the second century. I trained for the Anglican ministry at The Scottish Episcopal Church in Edinburgh. Ordained in 1980, I served as a curate in the parish of St Matthew and St James, Mossley Hill, Liverpool, before moving to the University of Durham in 1983 as Senior Tutor at St John's College. During my time in Durham, I was elected to serve as a member of the Church of England's General Synod. In 1991, I was appointed Vicar of Beverley Minister in the East Riding of Yorkshire. I enjoyed parish ministry in Beverley, where I was responsible for training a number of curates for ministry in the Church of England. I was especially concerned with the revitalisation of worship at Beverley Minister and incorporating young people more fully into its life. I am married to Elisabeth. Elisabeth is a graduate from Edinburgh University in the History of Art. We have four children. I am interested in current affairs and the broader life of society, as well as a range of sports. I have built a house in Scotland, and have a general interest in DIY. I was consecrated as a bishop in York Minster by the Archbishop of York on 13 November 1996, and enthroned as Bishop of Chester on 11 January 1997.
Address:  Bishop's House, Abbey Square, Chester. CH1 2JD 
TEL:01244 350864


pictureThe Dean of Chester- The Very Revd Dr Gordon McPhate
I qualified in Medicine at Aberdeen, took a Master's degree in Clinical Biochemistry at Surrey, and a research Doctorate in Physiology at Cambridge on the regulation of gluconeogenesis in human metabolism. I trained as a pathologist, and held academic posts in Physiology at the University of London, and Pathology at the University of St.Andrews, becoming consultant chemical pathologist to the Fife Hospitals, and directing research in diabetic nephropathy. I am in both the Royal College of Physicians and the Royal College of Pathologists, and am also an Adjudicator for the General Medical Council. Training as a priest in Cambridge, I hold degrees in Theology from both Cambridge and Edinburgh, specialising in the theology of Karl Barth and Medical Ethics. I was ordained and served my curacy in Southwark Diocese, where I later became Minor Canon of the Cathedral. Since my appointment as Dean of Chester, I have become Professor of Theology and Medicine at the University of Chester where I teach postgraduate courses in Science and Religion, and Bioethics. I am a member of the Society of Ordained Scientists. I have an adopted son, three grandsons, and a granddaughter.
Address:  The Deanery, 7 Abbey Street, Chester, CH1 2JF  
TEL:01244 500956


pictureBishop of Birkenhead - Rt Revd Keith Sinclair
I was consecrated as Bishop of Birkenhead on 8th March 2007, having previously been Vicar of Holy Trinity in Coventry for five and a half years,and Vicar of Aston in Birmingham for thirteen years. My passions are evangelism, justice and renewal, having been involved in some regeneration in Birmingham, and the development of youth ministry there and in Coventry. I was curate also in an inner-city parish in Birmingham, having been ordained in Birmingham Cathedral in 1984. During this time I was also Chaplain (part time) at the Children's Hospital in Birmingham. I worked as a solicitor in Birmingham before ordination, having been trained in London, where I was brought up. I am married to Rosie, who is a part-time lecturer in family law at Chester University, and we have three children, Peter, Anna and David. I enjoy rugby, walking and watching films. I love black gospel music and Bach, and I love serving in this Diocese and living on the Wirral.
Address:  Bishop's Lodge, 67 Bidston Road, Prenton, CH43 6TR 
TEL: 0151 6522741


pictureThe Bishop of Stockport- Rt Revd Libby Lane
Bishop Libby Lane was consecrated as the eighth Bishop of Stockport at York Minster on Monday 26 January 2015. Prior to that she was Vicar of St Peterís, Hale, and St Elizabethís, Ashley. Bishop Libby had been Dean of Women in Ministry for the diocese until shortly before her consecration as bishop. After school in Manchester and University at Oxford, she trained for ministry at Cranmer Hall in Durham. She was ordained a deacon in 1993 and a priest in 1994, serving her curacy in Blackburn, Lancashire. Prior to moving to Hale, Bishop Libby was Team Vicar in the Stockport South West Team, and Assistant Diocesan Director of Ordinands in our diocese, advising and supporting those considering a vocation to ministry in the church. She was also Family Life Officer for the Committee for Social Responsibility in our diocese. She also served in the Diocese of York, as a chaplain in hospital and in further education. Bishop Libby is married to the Revd George Lane, who is the co-ordinating chaplain at Manchester Airport. They have two adult children.
Address:  Bishop's Lodge, Back Lane, Dunham Town, Altrincham. Cheshire WA14 4SG 
TEL:0161 9285611


pictureThe Archdeacon of Macclesfield- The Venerable Ian Bishop
I became the Archdeacon of Macclesfield in January 2011. I am a Westcountryman and was born and brought up in Devizes and worked as a chartered surveyor before ordination. I am married to Sue, a personnel manager, and have three sons, Joe, Dan and Will. We live in Congleton. I was ordained as a deacon in 1991 and priested the following year. I was Rector of Middlewich and Byley and Rural Dean of Middlewich before being appointed Archdeacon. I enjoy theatre, cinema, cricket, golf and amateur dramatics.
Address:  Chester Diocesan Board of Finance, Church House, 5500 Daresbury Park, Daresbury, Warrington WA4 4GE.  
TEL:Office 01928 718834 Ext 234 (Mobile 07715 102 519)


pictureThe Archdeacon of Chester- The Venerable Dr Michael Gilbertson
I was born and brought up in the Stockport area, and educated at Stockport Grammar School and New College Oxford, where I read Modern History. On leaving university, I spent nine years as a civil servant in London, in what was then the Department of Trade and Industry, working in a variety of areas of industrial and trade policy, including as Private Secretary to the Secretary of State. I trained for the ordained ministry at Cranmer Hall in Durham, where I also completed my doctoral research on God and history in the Book of Revelation and in twentieth-century theology. After ordination, I served as a curate in Southwark diocese, before moving back to Durham diocese, where I served for ten years as the Vicar of Stranton, a parish in inner urban Hartlepool, and was Area Dean of Hartlepool for most of that period. I am married to Jenny, a solicitor, and we have two sons, Matthew and Duncan. I am a keen jazz pianist, and enjoy listening to music, watching sport and cooking. It is a real privilege to return to minister in the diocese where I grew up.
Address:  Chester Diocesan Board of Finance, Church House, 5500 Daresbury Park, Daresbury, Warrington WA4 4GE. 
TEL:01928 718834 Ext 253 (Mobile 07921 040 154)


Church House

pictureDiocesan Secretary- George Colville
I was born and grew up in Liverpool and studied at Liverpool Bluecoat School before reading Mathematics at Brasenose College Oxford. After graduating I trained and qualified as a Chartered Accountant in Liverpool. I then worked for the Charity Commission as a Senior Accountant where my main role was providing accounting support, advice and training to the Charity Commission staff and Charity trustees. I met my wife Andrea at Oxford. She worked as a Computer Analyst before taking on the job of looking after our two children. We worship at St Ann's Church Warrington, where I play the keyboard and am currently Churchwarden after previously having been treasurer for many years. Andrea runs the Guides. My interests include visiting historic monuments particularly castles, music and swimming. I am keen to hear from everyone involved in the Church's mission, and to ensure that the very best support is available to parishes, clergy and to others who follow Christ's call in our diocese.
Address: Chester Diocesan Board of Finance, Church House, 5500 Daresbury Park, Daresbury, Warrington WA4 4GE. 
TEL:01928 718834 Ext 247 Mob:07590 962 586


pictureDirector of Ministry- Chris Burkett
I am a sociologist with a keen passion to use social science skills for the good of the faith. I was one of the earliest UK practitioners of the new field of congregation studies, and have taught and written on the topic since 1992. Inspired by life-enhancing learning in the church, my personal commitment is to work for that learning for all Christians. I strive for an engaged and engaging Christian faith that connects to every part of human life, and have regularly written on prayer and politics. I long to see a renewed confidence in preaching and am part of The College of Preachers national training team and Reviews Editor of the journal The Preacher. I hold a doctorate in the work of the sociologist Maurice Halbwachs applied to preaching, and my continuing research is in collective memory and the social mechanisms behind how memories are created and maintained. My leisure time interests include old films, investigating old railway lines, and anything to do with printing and print design. Originally from the Cotswolds, I trained in Birmingham and served in the Diocese of Lichfield prior to coming to Chester. My wife, Christine, works in local government, and shares with me an enthusiasm for American history and politics. We have three daughters.
Address: Committee for Ministry, Church House, 5500 Daresbury Park, Daresbury, Warrington WA4 4GE. 
TEL:01928 718834 Ext 256 or 07921 040 153


pictureDirector of Communication- Stephen Regan
***David Marshall is standing in for Stephen on a temporary basis. He is monitoring emails and can be contacted on the numbers below***

I was born and grew up in Wigan, Lancashire, and left there, aged 18, to go to university in Canterbury in 1975. From an early age I was interested in writing and while at university I dabbled in student journalism. After graduation I became a trainee journalist on the Colchester Evening Gazette. After passing professional exams I worked as a journalist in different parts of the UK for regional newspapers, including: the Evening News in Norwich; the Hackney Gazette in East London; the Hull Daily Mail; and the Press and Journal in Scotland. I also worked for ORACLE Teletext and wrote a TV review column for it under the pseudonym of Sam Brady. In more recent times I worked as Chief Reporter of the Methodist Recorder in London before moving to my current role in the Diocese of Chester. I live in New Brighton, Wirral, where I founded and continue to run The Bards of New Brighton poetry group.
Address: Chester Diocesan Board of Finance, Church House, 5500 Daresbury Park, Daresbury, Warrington WA4 4GE. 
TEL:01928 718834 Ext 233 (Mobile 07834320120 )


pictureDirector of Education- Jeff Turnbull
I have been Diocesan Director of Education with overall responsibility for Diocesan support for work with children, young people and Church schools since January 1991. Born in 1950 at Bishop Auckland, my early years were spent mostly in the north-east and I studied physics at Durham University. Having completed my PGCE I began teaching at my old school, Durham Johnston in 1972. After 18 years in teaching, culminating in the headship of a school near Huddersfield, I spent a short time in educational administration with Kirklees Council before coming to the Diocese. In 1986 I became a Reader in Wakefield Diocese and served on their Liturgical Committee while retaining a keen interest in ministry among young people in my own church. I continue to exercise my Reader ministry in the Diocese, mostly in All Saints', Hoole. My wife Margaret, who is a civil servant, and I have three grown up daughters and three grandsons. I enjoy sport (sadly watching these days), particularly rugby union and cricket, although I still have an attachment to Sunderland AFC. It is a real privilege to minister in this Diocese, serving God alongside wonderful teachers, volunteers and the team in Church House, but my greatest delight is still to be alongside children as together we learn more about our Saviour.
Address: Chester Diocesan Board of Education. Church House, 5500 Daresbury Park, Daresbury, Warrington WA4 4GE. 
TEL:01928 718834 Ext 222


pictureDiocesan Advisory Committee (DAC) Secretary- Paul Broadhurst
Born in Birkenhead, I was educated at Birkenhead School and went on to read English Literature at St Chad's College, Durham. After graduation I joined the Civil Service and undertook a range of finance, human resource and corporate management jobs at the Ministry of Defence in Liverpool city centre. Alongside my MOD role, I took up property management from 1999 and completed an MBA degree through Durham University in 2007. After 20 years in MOD, I joined Church House in 2008 and am keen to support parishes with all the many and varied property issues they face. A keen amateur musician, I've been organist at Christ Church in Birkenhead since 1996.
Address: Chester Diocesan Board of Finance, Church House, 5500 Daresbury Park, Daresbury, Warrington WA4 4GE. 
TEL:01928 718834 Ext 243


pictureDiocesan Director of HR- Liz Geddes
Liz Geddes started her career in banking before becoming an HR professional. She has held previous HR / Personnel management positions at United Christian Broadcasters Ltd and John Lewis until becoming the Human Resources Adviser to the Dioceses of Chester, Liverpool and Manchester in May 2006. Liz became a full time employee of the Diocese of Chester in October 2009 as Head of Operational HR. Liz worked with officers from the Dioceses of Chester, Liverpool and Manchester in partnership with the Church Urban Fund to produce Just Employment, a guide for parishes and projects in employing and managing their workers. She is a magistrate, a member of the Trafford bench and the Community Justice Team. Her hobbies include floristry, cooking - especially cake baking, reading, and spending time with her husband and four children. Liz is involved in the life and worship of her local church where her husband is the Vicar. She co-leads the annual Alpha Course and helps to run the social activities. Liz's responsibilities include HR support to parishes and the DBF staff.
Address: Chester Diocesan Board of Finance, Church House, 5500 Daresbury Park, Daresbury, Warrington WA4 4GE. 
TEL:01928 718834 Ext 240 Mobile (07918 732 808)


Bishop's House
TEL: 01244 350864

Church House
TEL: 01928 718834