New Priest for All Saints, Tilford
The congregation at All Saints Church, Tilford are looking forward to welcoming the Revd.Neil Fairlamb, who will be taking up his appointment as priest after Easter. Neil’s licensing for his new minstry is on Wednesday 15th May 2019, during a special Licensing Service starting at 7:30 p.m; the Archdeacon of Surrey, the Venerable Paul Davies, will preside.
He replaces All Saints’ much-loved parish priest Canon Heather Humphrey, who sadly died in February 2018. The appointment was announced during Sunday morning services on 10th February 2019).
Neil and his wife Yvonne come to Tilford from North Wales, where, since 2003, he has served as Rector of Beaumaris and Ministry Area Leader of Bro Seiriol (serving the communities around Beaumaris, Llanddona and Penmon) in the Archdeaconry of Anglesey (see map below).
Neil was ordained in the Diocese of Southwark as a non-stipendiary minister, before moving into stipendiary ministry in St.David’s Diocese (Pembrokeshire and adjacent counties).
He then moved to the Diocese of Bangor - serving first in Arthog, Fairbourne and Llwyngwril on the Meirionnydd coast, before coming to be Rector of Beaumaris in 2003.
In addition to his ministerial gifts, Neil is a knowledgable wine expert, with a particular interest in the wines and spirits of Spain and Portugal, which have refreshed him on many pilgrim treks on the different Camino routes to Santiago de Compostela.
Neil is the author of historical books on the clergy and gentry of Beaumaris, as well as the Chair of the Grail Trust, which supports disadvantaged children in South India where Neil visits each year. He also stood for election on numerous occasions to the Welsh Assembly and UK Parliament.
Looking forward to his new appointment, Neil said:
“Yvonne and I have been very happy to have spent 20 years in Bangor Diocese. We married just as we started in Meirionnydd and have made many friends in the parishes and through wider ecumenical links including Ynys Enlli and the Roman Catholic Church’s outreach activities from St.Beuno’s and Loreto.
The care of our heritage buildings has been a rewarding challenge and we have been fortunate to have lived in such beautiful surroundings that have been daily inspirations. I am also grateful for the opportunity to pursue different interests in writing and politics.
The new post in Surrey will be an opportunity to care for a traditional but outward looking village community and to part of a busy town ministry in Farnham. I am so fortunate to be in good health and to be given an opportunity to continue ministry into my 70s, sharing life’s journeys with people - in solidarity with their joys and sorrows as we make our Christian pilgrimage together.
Yvonne and I are so grateful for everyone’s support and prayers.”
The Bishop of Bangor, the Right Reverend Andy John, said:
“I’m so pleased that Neil has found the right location to continue with his ministry, as well as enjoying some retirement. Neil has many gifts alongside the courage of his convictions. I hope and pray that they will continue to flourish in Tilford. We will keep Neil and Yvonne in our prayers and wish them every blessing in the future.
Please do also pray for the people and team of Bro Seiriol as we begin the process of appointing a new Vicar and Ministry Area Leader there.”
Information from the Bangor Diocesan web site.