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Vicar for Holy Trinity, Lamorbey

We are delighted to announce that The Revd Mark Francis James Blakely has been appointed as our new Vicar.

Father Mark’s Service of Institution and Induction will take place on 27 November at 7:30pm.

A bio from Father Mark…

“I was born in December 1975 and raised at my parents’ hotel in south Belfast. Ulster attracted many intrepid visitors at that time and it was a joy to learn so much from unconventional people. I attended Lagan College. Northern Ireland’s first integrated secondary school, with equal numbers of Roman Catholic and Protestant pupils. God’s command for Christian unity means a lot to me.

Unfortunately, my father Elmer passed away in 1995, as I started university. He was a lovely man. A gentle Anglican. My mother, Pearl, who worships at this church, was Presbyterian; she is rapidly making amends! Both parents came from farming families and as a result, I can milk cows. This may be of limited use in Sidcup.

I read law at Wolverhampton, completing my solicitor training at Chester, moving to London just before the millennium. My first job was ploughing through several thousand boxes of scientific data in a massive tobacco litigation case for Lovell White Durrant. It was a blessèd relief to begin helping people as a Legal Aid solicitor at Woolwich. I then did trusts and estate work at Sevenoaks before becoming a principal law lecturer at London Guildhall University, which then became part of London Metropolitan. Whilst working there I gained a Master’s degree. In 2011, I became Director of the Postgraduate Programmes at University College London, Faculty of Laws.

I began to explore my call to ordained priestly ministry in 2005 at a leisurely pace. My brother John died on New Year’s Eve 2009. I think that shock made me reappraise life and pursue my calling more intentionally. I was selected for training in 2012 and read for my theology degree at St Mellitus College, London. My sending church has been St Botolph without Aldgate (London Metropolitan was next door). My main placement church was All Saint’s, Belvedere and I served my curacy at St Martin, St Alban and St John the Divine Dagenham; later becoming curate in charge there, before Bishop Stephen whisked me away to Bishopscourt.

You might see me hiking, running and swimming. I am blessed with lovely family and friends. I am very glad to be here.”