Our people

There are many people involved in ensuring that our church runs smoothly, but below are some of those you are likely to encounter when visiting us.

  • Alec Harding

    Vicar

  • Joan Kemp-Ambler

    Joan Kemp-Ambler

    Churchwarden

  • Roy Long

    Roy Long

    Churchwarden

  • Director of Music

    Annette Lowson

    Organist and Director of Music

  • Astley Fenwick

    Astley Fenwick

    Reader Emeritus

  • David Blakely

    David Blakely

    Reader Emeritus

  • David Ewart

    David Ewart

    Parish Safeguarding Officer

  • Geoff Knott

    Geoff Knott

    PCC Secretary

  • Gladys Mugambi

    Parish Nurse

Alec Harding

Vicar

I am married to Kim and we have four children. Originally from Hereford I studied for a degree in music at St. Andrew’s University before moving to London for further study alongside working in a large central London church.

I trained to be ordained at Cranmer Hall in Durham (where I met Kim) and I was ordained in 1989. I was curate in Thirsk in York diocese before spending 6 years in my home town in a large urban Team Ministry. The family moved to Barnard Castle in 2000 and we love this place! I am the Area Dean of Barnard Castle and became an Honorary Canon of the Cathedral in 2011.

Joan Kemp-Ambler

Churchwarden

Roy Long

Churchwarden

I’ve nearly always lived in Teesdale having been born in Whorlton and was Churchwarden there about forty years ago. I now live in Startforth but having been christened and married in St Mary’s Whorlton, I have a special interest in the church. I’m looking forward to protecting the building and promoting its use within the community.

Annette Lowson

Organist and Director of Music

Astley Fenwick

Reader Emeritus

My working life has been in electrical engineering this now includes energy management and seeking methods to reduce and provide sustainable energy solutions. All energy is derived from the earth which is given to us from God and I feel it is our moral duty to look after this finite source.

I’m married to Miriam and we have one daughter, Liz who is married to Chris and also we have a Granddaughter Charlotte and they all live in Barnard Castle. I retired from my role as Reader in May 2024 and am now Reader Emeritus.

David Blakely

Reader Emeritus

I was admitted as a Reader in the Diocese of Gloucester in 1975 and have been licensed in the Diocese of Durham since 1988. I taught mathematics at Barnard Castle School before retiring in 2001. I retired from active ministry at the end of 2014 and am now a Reader Emeritus.

David Ewart

Parish Safeguarding Officer

The Church of England is committed to safeguarding as an integral part of the life and service of the church. Harriet is the Parish Safeguarding Officer for the Ecclesiastical Parish of Barnard Castle with Whorlton and can be contacted on  safeguarding@stmarysbarnardcastle.org.uk

 

Geoff Knott

PCC Secretary

Contact pcc_secretary@stmarysbarnardcastle.org.uk

Gladys Mugambi

Parish Nurse

A member of the congregation at Bowburn, Gladys is employed by Durham Dales Parish Nursing to offer professional pastoral ministry across Teesdale with a particular focus on mental health and supporting those who are at risk because of isolation.

Get in touch

If you have a question about any aspect of the work of the church you can contact us by phone, email or reach out on Facebook and we will do our best to help.