We are currently in an Interegnum and on the 22nd May 2018, the PCC have confirmed management structure of St Mary’s during this time as follows:-
Nigel Birkett was confirmed as Acting Chairman, and other important offices including sub-committees of Worship, Mission and Finance & Property were also confirmed. However, the day to day management of the church falls to the Management Team which consists of our three Wardens, Jean Hall, Marlène Phillips and Nigel Birkett, together with Margaret Laver as the PCC representative and Valerie Gaskell as Finance Officer. If you would like to speak to someone regarding church matters, please speak to one of the Wardens initially who will then direct you to the appropriate person. However, during an interregnum it is the Rural Dean, Revd Rebecca Harris, who has responsibility for St Mary Magdalene.
I originally come from London. On leaving school I trained as a teacher in Liverpool - specialising in French and Latin - later on teaching children with special needs.
I was married to Roger, a Chartered Accountant, until I was widowed in 1994. We had two daughters - Clare and Lucy, and I now have three grandchildren. We moved to Taunton in 1980 and became members of St. Mary Magdalene’s.
I trained for Reader Ministry in 1995 and was Licensed at Wells Cathedral in 1998. First serving at St Mary Magdalene’s, I have also spent time at All Saints, Halcon, a Benedictine monastery in India, Musgrove Park Hospital,Taunton and New Zealand as a Chaplain - now I am very happy to be back at St. Mary Magdalene’s.
I was born in Egypt of Missionary parents, but was educated mainly in the UK. I qualified as a Medical Practitioner in 1955 and, after a 3-year Short Service Commission in the RAF, I worked in various hospital posts (including 3 years in Dublin and 2 years in Uganda) before being appointed as a Consultant Physician at Musgrove Hospital, here in Taunton, in 1970. I was Licensed as a Reader in the same year and also served as a Director of Somerset Care for 3 years in the early 1990's.
I met Margaret at University and we were married a year after graduating. We have 2 children and 4 grandchildren.
I was born and bred in Brighton but later moved to the Midlands where I was admitted as a Reader by the then Bishop of Coventry, The Rt. Rev. Cuthbert Bardsley. I joined Christian Aid as the Midlands Regional Supervisor and they in turn sent me to South East Asia on a fact finding mission.
From Christian Aid I became Head of Marketing and Appeals for Age Concern England. Before retirement I worked as Director of Appeals and Marketing for The Mission to Seafarers in London.
I moved to Taunton in June 2012 and received the Bishop of Taunton's licence to officiate in January 2014. I am married to Gillian and we have a daughter and a son both of whom are surgeons. We also have four grandchildren.
Director of Music
I was born in Taunton and studied music at Durham University and the Royal Academy of Music. I then worked in London at Merchant Taylors’ School and Westminster Abbey, and then in Norfolk at Norwich School. Returning to my roots in Somerset, I was Director of Music at Queen’s College from 2007 to 2014.
From September 2011 it has also been a great pleasure to work at St Mary Magdalene, and I now combine this work with the post of Head of Congregational and Instrumental Music for the Royal School of Church Music. I hope that with God’s help we can all catch a glimpse of Heaven through being united in praise and worship with the angels in the roof!
If you might be interested in singing in our choirs (adult or junior) or playing an instrument in worship, please do contact the Church Office on 01823 272441, speak to me after a service.