Meet the Team

St Patrick's Church, Patterdale, is run entirely by volunteers.  During the Coronavisrus pandemic the Standing Committee is meeting on behalf of the Parochial Church Council.  Members of the Standing Committee are:

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Morris Rodham


Morris was born and bred in Newcastle, has served in the Army and as a teacher, before becoming a 'white-collar' worker as a vicar.  He was a vicar in a multi-cultural parish in Leamington Spa, before becoming Archdeacon Missioner for the Diocese of Coventry, overseeing the strategy for church growth, deployment and appointments of parish clergy, and community regeneration initiatives. 

As a very keen mountaineer the opportunity to move to Patterdale was not one to be missed, so he jumped at it and was Licensed as Priest-in-Charge in June 2029.  He is a volunteer with the Community First Responders and Patterdale Mountain Rescue Team.

The post here is unpaid.  Basically, he gets the house to live in in return for 3 days work (Usually Sundays-Tuesdays).  So Morris has to find an income somehow, and does so by using the house as a B&B.  He is also a qualified Mountain Leader and is available for mountain-guiding, and is also a qualified PAT Tester!

Morris is married to Judith, a nursery/reception teacher, and they have 4 grown-up children and 4 grand-children.

They both love living and working here in Patterdale, give thanks for what has gone before, and look forward to the future, to see what God will do in the coming years here.

Tel:  07774 296652


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Philip Brown


Phil is a very long-serving Churchwarden, having been doing the role for over 45 years!  He is a local lad, born and bred here.  He looks after his mum, Betty (who is currently the oldest person living in the parish who was actually born in the Dale!).

Phil does a host of practical jobs including cleaning the church and ringing the bells!  He is a keen walker and might see him coming back from one of his expeditions locally with a rucksack full of freshly caught fish!  

Tel: 017684 82478

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Richard Theobald


Richard retired to the Lake District in 2000 after serving as a headteacher for over 21 years. 

Richard has been a churchwarden for 11 years, and church secretary for 18 years, and looks after the administration and work parties (called ‘Boon Days’) to keep the building and the graveyard looking great!  He deals with the legal aspects of the building and churchyard (including a lengthy process called ‘faculties’) and has also put in a phenomenal amount of time and energy looking after church during times when there was no vicar!

He is a keen road cyclist and has ventured with school parties biking in this country and abroad.  He is well supported by his wife, Mary (who looks after the church flower rota, keeps a pastoral eye on people, and also makes great tray bakes!).

Tel: 017684 82379


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Jo Heeley


Jo lived in Glenridding for many years before moving to Newton Reigny.  She

spent 33 years as an accountant (member of Chartered Institute of Public Finance and Accountancy) in Local Government, Education, Housing, Personal Social Services, Police Authority/Police and Crime Commissioner.

She enjoys walking, gardening, cats, and, (amazingly!)....spreadsheets!

She volunteers as a school governor of Patterdale CofE Primary School, an Independent Examiner, and Finance Officer at Affinity Credit Union.

She likes the beauty of St Patrick's, it's peace and serenity, the warm welcome she receives, the amazing music, the companionship of helping on Boon Days, and Mary Theobald's traybakes!

Tel:017688 40589


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Mike Town

Director of Music

Mike taught Environmental Sciences (several “ologies”), Music, Economics and Martial Arts in the suburbs of Slough for 36 years.  

He retired to his house near Keswick in 2009 and became Director of Music at St. Patrick’s soon afterwards.  He is an outstanding organist as well as a great bloke! (not necessarily a common combination!). 

As well as playing on Sundays, he plays in 'The organist entertains' in the summer months, and also organises the extensive musical concert programme for St Patrick's, with performers of very high quality.  He also accompanies the Jubilee Singers and Keswick Choral Society.

Mike enjoys reading controversial books, tending his garden and country walking.  He is an expert on predicting local weather, and will tell you the size of raindrops to expect in the forecast!    

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Ken Ross

Standing Committee

Ken is Scottish but has lived south of the border here in Glenridding for a long time.  He is a Chartered Accountant and has had a distinguished career specialising in insolvencies, including being President of The Insolvency Practitioners Association (IPA).  After retiring in 2003 he became an inspector for the IPA and then worked for the Crown Office as a forensic accountant, giving evidence in court on behalf of the Crown.  

After giving his life to Jesus in 1961, Ken has spent most of his Christian life in Baptist churches, including being a deacon and Treasurer.  He is also now an accredited lay leader in the church at Patterdale, meaning he can take services locally here.  Ken has been a great supporter of the local Patterdale CofE Primary school and is currently the Interim Chair of Governors.  

He follows Queens Park Football Club - Scotland's oldest football club and the only Scottish club to have played in the FA cup semi-finals! 

​He is married to Patricia and they can often be seen walking around and enjoying the scenery of this beautiful local area. 

Tel:  017684 82403


PCC Members

Other members of our Church Council are:

Rev Tim Cooke (Methodist Minister)

PCC Member

Tim spent 35 years in the motor industry before becoming a Methodist Minister.  He has been one of the Ministers at Penrith Methodist Circuit since 2015, which includes serving the Churches of Penrith, Stainton and Patterdale.  Tim also helps with Collective Worship, and is a governor at Patterdale School.

He is married to Tracey who is a children's worker for Penrith Methodist Circuit and a driving force behind Messy Church, and many family activities.

They are both keen hillwalkers and are walking the Wainwrights for the third time!

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George Theobald

Lay Reader

A 'Reader' in the Church of England is some-one who is Licensed to take services as well as the Vicar.  George also takes services elsewhere, incuding regularly at Dacre.  George runs an opticians in Lancaster, is married to Jane and is a keen mountain walker.

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Jan King

PCC and Parish Safeguarding Officer

Jan has a great desire to help children benefit positively.  She was a qualified youth leader for many years and since moving to Glenridding has helped regularly in the local Patterdale Church of England primary school, especially in times when the church had no vicar.  Jan therefore knows most of the children in our villages, and is our Parish Safeguarding Officer, helping us to ensure that St Patrick's is a safe place for everyone.  If you wish to talk about any safeguarding concerns, please contact either the Vicar or Jan, and you will be listened to seriously.

Tel: 017684 82899


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Stephen Gorton

PCC Member

Stephen spent many years on holidays in the Lake District, and moved here to live.  He has a keen interest in the area and it's natural habitat.  He also has a distinguished record of innovation in the church and Dale, being one of the founding members of the Patterdale Mountain Rescue Team, initiating the Patterdale Boundary Walk, and arranging for the altar to fallen aircraft being located in St Patrick's Church.

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