About me

I’m the Superintendent Minister of the Shropshire and Marches Methodist Circuit.

I am married, with 2 children, 2 dogs and a guinea pig. I play the tin whistle (badly), enjoy science fiction and have been blogging since February 2002.

I got a degree in physics (and the philosophy of science) from Sussex University in 1984 and worked for 6 years in the workers’ co-operative (or common ownership) movement before beginning my ministerial training at The Queen’s College, Birmingham. I served in North Wales, in the Buckley & Deeside Circuit, from 1993 to 1998 and then went south to Swansea. After 10 years in the graveyard of ambition I went back to North Wales, working as part of the training team of the Wales Synod. In the summer of 2013 I returned to circuit ministry.

{ 8 comments… read them below or add one }


nancy 12.13.08 at 5:30 am

my oldest daughter is in her senior year in college, her major being physics. and i see that your photos keep changing…hum…nice.


laurence 12.29.08 at 1:45 am

lovley sight.

Never heard of the degus critters afore now.

i like stick insects but got none


Micky 01.06.09 at 4:48 pm

Hope the new job is going well Richard! I’m in the madness of Superintendency now. Finally re-entered the world of Blogging, you can find the new site at sacredwells.blogspot.com the Singing Colours blog had to go when I lost use of my Methodist Team email.
Anyhow, the new site is pretty thin as it was only born today - but who knows where it will go…


Bob Crick 03.10.12 at 1:06 pm

Dear Richard, This is the first time I have ever commented on a web-site and was drawn to yours because I did a google search for Dr Barry Orford’s article on homosexuality in Church Times. Then I came to read the about you bit and how you triggered thinking between education and training. This led me to the most recent article by the London Institute for Contemporary Christianity which asks “What is Education” and should you find it steers you back to the root word of disciple, “to train/follow my example.” I spent 27 years in the Royal Navy and more recently the past 14 years supporting education in two large secondary schools: one independent, one state and have been a bystander on this wonderful debate. Their lordships in the Admiralty saw training as the equipping to do the job in hand by those that did the task (the practitioners). For education they saw any opportunity to broaden the mind, thinking, emotions and for some, dare I say, the soul. On the other hand the professional educators had as many views as successive governments over the past 40 years. I guess there is just part of me that says you are clearly doing a great job straddling both whatever tag you give it.


Shirley Bench 10.29.13 at 8:00 pm

Hi Richard,

I am a Methodist minister serving in Port Erin on the Isle of Man.
I am the mother of four, grandmother of seven, and great-grandmother of one. I have pastoral charge of four churches, and my terrific Airedale terrier, Rowdy shares my manse. I came from education (teaching) and I think that your choice of words depends on your audience. As the mayor (character) says in the wonderful film The Milagro Beanfield War, ‘If they don’t know it already, they’re not interested in learning it.’ People in schools made me feel a failure when they declared that after they graduated, they were never going to open a book again! Sometimes it’s impossible to get through to certain people. Thank God, not all my students were not like that. Whew! What a rant! Sorry about that. This is my first visit to your blog, but will certainly not be my last. By the way, I served in Port Talbot from 2002 - 2007.


Richard 10.29.13 at 9:19 pm

Hi Shirley. Great to hear from you!


Iforonwy 02.14.14 at 11:10 am

Just came across your webite whilst looking for the hymn tune Ellan Vannin. I remember we used to sing words of another hymn to it back in the 70s.

But the best hymn tune ever - as you will know if you served on the Buckley & Deeside Circuit - is Deep Harmony!

living in exile in Cornwall but still a Old Quayite at heart!


Richard 02.14.14 at 11:37 pm

Deep Harmony certainly had a following in that neck of the woods, Iforonwy. Good to hear from you!

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