News – BBC’s Frances Finn joins a host of new ordinations broadcasting their faith across Notts

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BBC’s Frances Finn joins a host of new ordinations broadcasting their faith across Notts


Nottinghamshire will welcome a host of new priests and deacons this weekend as more than 20 people are ordained into Church of England parishes in Nottingham, Beeston, Ravenshead, Stapleford, Retford, Gamston and Bridgford, Radcliffe on Trent and Shelford, Sherwood, Worksop, Aspley, Clifton, Mansfield, Selston and Westwood, Bilborough and Strelley.


The BBC Nottingham’s long-standing broadcaster Frances Finn is the most high profile figure amongst a diverse group of men and women which includes also teachers, a missionary, a consultant anaesthetist at QMC, a researcher, a charity worker at MENCAP, a biomedical statistician and even a Spurs fan.



(High quality images via this link, plus potted biographies below)


The ordinations are taking place at Southwell Minster, part of the Diocese of Southwell and Nottingham, on Saturday 26th & Sunday 27th September. The ordinations will be led by The Bishop of Southwell and Nottingham, Paul Williams, and the new Bishop of Sherwood, Andy Emerton, in one of the first acts of his new role since he was consecrated at York Minster earlier this week.


Each of the ordinations comes at the successful conclusion of pre-ordination training. An ordinand is made deacon to serve as Assistant Curate in a specific parish, usually for a three year appointment. If the deacon is to then become a priest it is usually after a year of such service, which includes undergoing post-ordination training. He or she will be ordained as a priest and will continue in the same parish until the curacy is completed or extended.


Priest candidates 2020


FRANCES FINN: Fran has been a BBC radio presenter for more than twenty years and she will continue to broadcast on Radio Nottingham and Notts TV during her curacy. She is married to Gerry, and has a nine year old daughter, Florence. Having studied at Trinity, Bristol back in the 90’s, she has loved the MA course at St Mellitus, London. She’s a keen musician, motorbiker and meal maker. Fran will serve her title with The Revd Canon Steve Silvester in the Nottingham St Nicholas Benefice.


JOHN BLAKELEY. John was a teacher in Derby for 5 years before moving to the Nottingham Emmanuel School for 12 years, prior to his training for ministry at St Mellitus College, London.  John is married to Lynda and they have two teenage sons. John met Lynda whilst at university, married as students in 1998 and then moved to the East Midlands in 2000.  John enjoys running, cycling, reading and playing the guitar. John is serving his title with The Revd Canon Steve Silvester in Nottingham St Nicholas Benefice.


TRACEY BYRNE. Tracey has spent the past year living in and serving the parish of Beeston, where she’s learning how to fold Go-pak tables without trapping her fingers, how to subtitle YouTube worship videos and, along with the rest of the population, how to mute herself on Zoom.  Her partner Sandy is thoroughly enjoying parish life, in between teaching art at a Nottingham secondary school, and volunteering for Oxfam, and they are beginning to get on top of their grass-free garden.  It has been a time of unexpected blessing and unimaginable change, as God continues to bring people to St John’s diverse and generous community, and Tracey is very much looking forward to seeing what unfolds on this next stage of their shared journey. Tracey is serving her title with The Revd Wayne Plimmer in the Beeston Benefice.


JULIE COTTERILL Julie is married to Steve, a Self Supporting Minister and Engineer and they have three grown up children, Rebekah, Matthew and Bethany and a granddaughter Abigail.   She has lived in Nottinghamshire for most of her life, apart from three memorable years in San Jose, California in her teens.  Julie has spent almost the last ten years serving at New Cross Community Church, a Local Ecumenical Partnership in the Parish of St Michael and All Angels, first as Children and Families Worker, as Licensed Lay Fresh Expressions Minister and latterly as Curate.  Julie has spent the past year training in context with the St Mellitus Theological College, East Midlands and she will continue to serve her title in Sutton-in-Ashfield (St. Michael & All Angels) New Cross Community Church – Anglican – Methodist – Local Ecumenical Partnership (Benefice) under the supervision of The Revd Kate Byrom from the Ravenshead Benefice.


BENJAMIN EVANS. Ben became a Christian at university and spent the next decade serving as a missionary in Bristol and Nottingham before training for ordained ministry at Ridley Hall, Cambridge. Ben has been married to Elise for three years and they are the proud parents of Elya who was born in July of this year. He is serving his title with The Revd Canon Mark Tanner in Radcliffe-on-Trent and Shelford Benefice.


JAMIE FRANKLIN. Jamie trained at Ripon College Cuddesdon and has just managed to finish off his doctorate in Theology after a hard and sustained effort. Jamie is married to Lorna and they have two boys, Rafe (3) and Rupert (2). When not occupied with other affairs, he likes watching Tottenham Hotspur. Jamie is serving his title with The Revd Ian McCormack in the Benefice of Nottingham St George with St John The Baptist.


BENJAMIN MARSTON. Ben grew up in Lancashire and studied History and Politics at Durham University.  He is married to Sarah and they have two daughters, Naomi (3) and Lydia (1).  After graduation, Ben spent ten years working in student ministry, both in the UK and in New Zealand where he and Sarah first met. He enjoys spending time with family, walking, reading and growing vegetables – with a mixed record of success! Ben trained for ordination at Wycliffe Hall in Oxford and is serving his title with The Revd Ben Clayton in the Retford St Saviour Benefice.


CLAIRE MELLESS. Claire was born and brought up in Nottinghamshire, living and worshipping in Warsop. She worked as a teaching assistant before returning to education part time to qualify as a teacher. Claire worked as a teacher in a special needs school in Cotgrave until commencing ordination training full time at Cranmer Hall, Durham. Claire loves spending time with friends or her brother Andrew, relaxing over a coffee, watching a film, and taking her dog Lola for walks. Claire has fully embraced life as a curate in Ravenshead and is enjoying her time living, working and ministering within the parish. Claire will continue to serve her title with the Revd Kate Byrom in the Ravenshead Benefice.


JONATHAN MOLE.  Jonathan is married to Kristine who is training as an ordinand at St Mellitus East Midlands.  They are delighted to have four teenage daughters who keep them on their toes and bring them much joy.  They have lived in a number of different places and countries before moving to Nottingham in 2005, when Jonathan took up a consultant Anaesthetist post in the Queen’s Medical Centre, Nottingham.  Jonathan’s ordination training was with St Mellitus London, with placements at the QMC and Trinity Church, Nottingham.  He loves current affairs, sports, reading and people, and is refreshed by spending time in the mountains or by the sea.  He has been enjoying serving his curacy under The Revd. Mark Fraser in the Gamston and Bridgford Benefice.


SUE PENDENQUE. Sue came to Christ when 16 at a Billy Graham rally in Aston Villa, was lovingly nurtured in a Baptist church in Coventry, spent many years in an Assemblies of God Church in Leicester as a children’s minister and then found her way and a home into the Church of England 6 years ago.  She is married to George, she is mum to Josh and Steph, mum-in-law to Alice and Andy and very proud ‘Nanna’ to Alaia and Erin and Levi.  Sue trained for ordination at St Hild College, Sheffield as a contextual student at St Peter’s Church, Ruddington and is loving serving her title with The Revd Bridget Baguley in Sherwood Benefice.


ALEX SHIELLS. Alex grew up in Newcastle Upon Tyne before moving to Nottinghamshire to

study at Mattersey Hall Christian College where he met his wife, Catherine. They have been married for four years and are the proud owners of a black cat called Kasper and a miniature daschund called Charlie. Alex trained for Ordination at St Hild College, Sheffield. Alex is serving his title with The Revd Luiz Lima in the Worksop Christ Church and Shireoaks Benefice.




EMILY CHARKHAM  Emily has lived in several great cities across the UK (Cambridge, London, Exeter and Edinburgh to name 4!) and is excited to explore Nottingham. She loves discovering new coffee shops (preferably with friends), watching cricket and travelling. Previously she worked as a not-for-profit accountant in London. She trained at Trinity College, Bristol. Emily will serve her title with The Revd Mark Fraser in the Gamston and Bridgford Benefice.


ANNA CLARKE Anna graduated from Exeter University in 2014 and started working for Exeter Network Church as a Student Pastor. Her time working in church settings has largely been spent focusing on work with youth, children and students. She began training for Ordination in 2018 at St Mellitus, South West. She has loved her time in the South West but is excited for this move to Nottingham and to join in with what God is doing in the East Midlands.  Anna will serve her title with The Revd Rich Atkinson in the Aspley Benefice.


LEE GORDON. Lee was born in Bristol and brought up in Cardiff, where she studied for her first degree in Applied Life Sciences. She moved to Hemel Hempstead when she married Jamie and spent the next decade commuting into London where she was a Research Officer at the Royal Postgraduate Medical School, gaining her PhD in the study of the human heart in 1993. She and Jamie moved to Nottinghamshire with their first son Adam in 1996, and their subsequent children (Jay, Laurie, Fiona, and Cassie) were all born in the village of Underwood. She came to faith through the baptism of her children and became a Reader in the Parish of Underwood and Brinsley in 2017. Continuing her study of the (spiritual) human heart, she trained for ordained ministry at St Hild Theological College and will serve her title with The Revd Canon Fiona Shouler in the Selston with Westwood Benefice.


ESTHER HUTCHINSON Esther grew up in Sutton-in-Ashfield, before moving to York to study Christian theology at York St John University. While at university Esther met her husband Sam at the church they both worshipped at, they have now been married for nearly two years. After university Esther moved to Durham to start her ordination training at Cranmer Hall. Esther will serve her title with The Revd Lydia Cartwright in the Clifton Team Ministry Benefice.


JESS LANE. Jess started going to church aged 12, when she asked her parents to take her following a RE lesson which sparked her curiosity about Christianity. She studied for her BA in Drama and Theatre Studies at Chester University, where she made life-long friendships and joked about becoming ordained. God took it seriously, and shortly after graduating from her BA she started the discernment process. Since then she has worked as a Chaplaincy Assistant at King’s College London, an Intern and Ordinand at Holy Trinity Clapham and she finished her training at a brand new Church Plant, St Peter’s Vauxhall. Jess is excited to serve her title with The Revd Rich Atkinson at Aspley Benefice with Bilborough and Strelley Benefice.


JO LEES ROBINSON Jo began her life in Nottingham but spent most of her teenage years up North before returning to Nottingham to study Theology at the University of Nottingham. After graduating she worked for the charity MENCAP, got married to John and later went on to work in operations at their local church. She went on to serve an internship with the diocese before beginning training for ordination at St Mellitus College. During her training, Jo & John have been blessed with the arrival of their son Joshua and are enjoying life with a one year old! Jo will server her title with The Revd Jonny Hughes at Trinity Church Nottingham (Bishop’s Mission Order)


PIPPA SCOTT Born in Nottingham, Philippa grew up and worshipped in some amazing places having moved from Nottingham to Salisbury as a child, and then later to Manchester in her late teens. She returned to Nottingham aged eighteen to study for a degree in Mathematics with Statistics, which she put to good use working as a Biomedical Statistician after graduation. Philippa spent two years serving at Holy Trinity Lenton and the University of Nottingham chaplaincy on a ministry experience scheme, the second year of which included her involvement with the inaugural year of the Diocesan Young Leadership College. Philippa has a passion for music, particularly choral singing, and enjoys spending quality time with her identical twin sister Felicity. She has spent the last three years training residentially at Cranmer Hall in Durham and will serve her title with The Revd Caroline Phillips in the Mansfield St Peter and St Paul Benefice and St Mark Benefice.


PETER STANLEY. Peter grew up in Stoke-on-Trent and moved to Worksop in 1992 working for Post Office Ltd as a senior IT Manager until December 2019 when he retired. Married to Susan for 36 years with two daughters, Victoria and Gemma and a granddaughter Sophie. Peter has worshipped at St. Luke’s Shireoaks for over 30 years, where with Susan (LLM) he has led worship and been PCC Treasurer. Peter has also served a number of years on the Bishops’ Council. Peter is studying at St. Mellitus in Nottingham. Peter will serve his title with The Revd Luiz Lima in the Worksop Christchurch and Shireoaks Benefice.


TOM TUCK Tom was Born in Nottingham and grew in Bestwood. He came to faith at 15 through the ministry of a local Assemblies of God Church but sensed a call to ministry in the Anglican Church while spending a year working for Soul Survivor, Watford. He returned to Nottingham and took part in the inaugural year of the Younger Leadership Colleges intern programme and then went on to train for ordination at St Hild College in Sheffield. Tom will serve his title with The Revd Canon Peter Huxtable in the Stapleford Benefice.


GRANT WALTON. Grant was born and grew up in Zimbabwe and came to follow Jesus at a young age. He studied at university in Johannesburg, South Africa, where he met Elizabeth, also a university student. They were married in 1985 and both were high school teachers for more than a decade. Grant has been involved in church ministry for over thirty years, since 2000 in senior leadership roles. In 2018 he and Elizabeth embarked on a new adventure, relocating to Nottingham where she took a post at the University of Nottingham. They love the city and its people and are pleased to call it home. They have three adult children, two huskies and two cats, all of whom presently reside in Johannesburg. Both Grant and Elizabeth enjoy travelling and celebratory meals with friends amongst other things.  Grant will serve his title with The Revd Tom Gillum in the St Mary the Virgin, the Lace Market, Nottingham Benefice.


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