I was born in Sevenoaks, lived in Cuxton, and was raised in Lancashire. After leaving school, I joined the armed forces and saw active service in several theatres worldwide, doing specialist reconnaissance photography in the air and on the ground. I photographed and was introduced to HLM Queen Elizabeth II during that time on four different occasions. I was privileged enough to work with UK and NATO forces partners in many settings.
In 1996 injury forced early retirement, and I returned to Kent. Like many ex-servicemen, I spent time adjusting back to civilian life. During this time, I worked several jobs, including door-to-door sales, bar work and temping on building sites while trying to build up my own photographic business. For various reasons, that didn’t take off, and after managing a mini lab in north London, I worked as a sales manager with a second-hand camera supplier. When that company cut back on staff as the initial hit of eBay and digitisation took hold of the market, I moved to become firstly the assistant and then steward of a golf club.
In 2011 I started a part-time course at SEITE Theology. In 2012 circumstances allowed me to take up full-time studies at Canterbury Christ Church University, which eventually led to a BA(Hons) in Theology with Religion, Philosophy and Ethics, followed by a Masters by Research in Theology and Religion. My MRes dissertation centred on the Rev Caleb Parfect, who, while at Strood, was instrumental in founding the SPCK workhouse movement under the old poor law, which led to the union workhouses. He probably was also the minor canon who oversaw the rebinding of the Textus Roffensis after Dr Harris had dropped it in the Thames.
For my last four years at Canterbury Christ Church University, I was an Associate Lay Chaplain to the community, so I come to KAS with extensive knowledge of academia from both sides of the fence. I also bring knowledge of student communities, especially groups that sit on the margins. My current research work centres around ‘Excluded Congregations’ in Kent. Whilst I work on a doctoral thesis exploring ‘Parochial charity in the lower Medway valley in the long eighteenth century’. I still live in the Medway towns with my wife and son.