The Agricultural Chaplain, Alan Griggs, can drop in at farms and offer a listening ear in total confidence. Alan is an ordained minister in the Church of England and moved to Derbyshrie after marrying Louise in 2001, (the daughter of a farming family from Longford). He says "it is a privilege supporting others when life doesn't always go to plan and things get tough".
In addition to Alan, the project also has the services of two Associate Chaplains - Revd. Professor Stella Mills and Revd. Sue Bamping.
Revd Professor Stella Mills is a Methodist Minister serving in the area between Stanton and Uttoxeter and has been in rural ministry for over ten years. Previously, she inherited a small-holding in Wales which was let to sheep and which introduced her practically to hefting! The Arthur Rank Centre has also played a part in her work and she has written occasionally in its magazine Country Way. Having taken managed severance from higher education where she worked in software engineering, she is interested in the health and well-being of the farmers and their animals, with a particular interest in sharing farmers' experiences of difficult times through both human and animal suffering. She is a member of the Rural Theology Association and has contributed papers to its journal, Rural Theology. In addition, she is a visiting professor at the St Mary's and St Giles Centre at Wrexham Glyndwr University as well as being a visiting professor in health and well-being at the University of Chester.
Stella is also doing some work into Mycoplasma bovis, a very debilitating disease affecting diary herds and other livestock. For more information on this work, including a case study and some research, please click on the link below:
Revd Sue Bamping moved from Cumbria to Taddington in Derbyshire in the summer of 2014 where she had just finished her curacy. She is married to Alan (Bamping, not Griggs!) and they have three grown up children and five grandchildren. She was previously a registered nurse working for many years in the Hospice environment and had been involved with Hospice, Hospital and Prison Chaplaincy. She has permission to serve in the Diocese of Derbyshire and mainly assists in the White Peak Benefice where she lives. Sue says that although she has been ordained in the Anglican Church she sees herself as an ‘All Sorts’ of Christian; growing up in the Methodist Church and over the years worshipping in a variety of other denominations.
The chaplaincy covers 65 parishes across the north part of the Derbyshire Dales and Hope Valley - from Hartington to Baslow and Edale to Darley Dale, and all parishes in between.
The post is managed by RAD, Work Place Chaplaincy Derbyshire and the Derbyshire Rural Stress Partnership, and is funded through the Rural Stress Initiative Fund.
Alan is available at the Agricultural Business Centre in Bakewell most Mondays and spends the majority of his time out and about visiting farms or responding to referrals from a wide range of organisations. He also works closely with local healthcare providers, Churches in Derbyshire, Agricultural Christian Fellowship, Citizens Advice Bureau, Farm Crisis Network, Derbyshire Rural Helpline and the Royal Agricultural Benevolent Institution.
The service is FREE and totally confidential.
Alan Griggs, Agricultural Chaplain - Normal working days: Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday.
Tel: 01629 592970 or 07710 088972
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