Welcome to the St. James’ and St. Basil’s Team. We are a small team with a wide range of skills and experience. We love what we do, and we do it with passion. Please come and talk to us, we look forward to meeting with you.
Revd. James McGowanVicar
James arrived in the Parish at the end of February 2019 having previously spent almost eight years on the Isle of Man, first as Assistant Curate at Cathedral Isle of Man and then latterly serving as Vicar of four Churches in the south east corner of the Island together with a number of other roles in the Diocese of Sodor and Man.
After completing undergraduate studies in York, he trained as a secondary teacher at the University of Durham and taught Religious Studies in the North East for a number of years before training for ordination at Cranmer Hall, Durham. He was awarded an MA in Faith and Public Policy from the University of Chester in 2016 and has an interest in the area of Disability Theology and Education Policy and Practice.
Together with his wife Caroline, his son George and daughter Aida, they attempt to cajole their stubborn Bedlington Terrier, Maggie and can be often found by the sea day dreaming about life. James might also be seen around the parish on his motorbike – a pastime inherited from the Isle of Man.
Simon Davies-FidlerMusic Director
Simon Fidler is a choral conductor based in the north east of England.
Educated in Newcastle upon Tyne and Sheffield, Simon is the music director and founder of Voices of Hope, the award winning chamber choir. With premiere performances of new works by Agustin Fernandez, Ian Stephenson, Kathryn Tickell and John Kefala Kerr, and collaborations with Sage Gateshead, Northern Chords and the University of Newcastle upon Tyne, the choir has become one of the most sought after in the UK.
Charles WoolerOrganist and Assistant Director of Music
Charles Wooler first came to Js and Bs in July 2017 to play for just one service- he found the place so welcoming that he has not yet left!
As Organist and Assistant Director of Music at St James and St Basil’s, Charles plays the organ for all the major services and directs Sanctuary Voices, one of the choirs who you can hear singing on a Sunday.
Away from Js and Bs, Charles is a well established recitalist whose solo performances include recitals in Westminster Abbey, St Paul’s Cathedral, Liverpool Cathedral and Blenheim Palace.
She loves gardening and has an allotment nearby which she says is sorely neglected since becoming a Churchwarden!
She has 3 grand-daughters aged 5, 6 and 7 whom she spends time with each week and a black cat who loves the fact that she spends such a lot of time on the computer doing this website and can therefore sit on her lap.
She has been a communicant at J’s & B’s during the past 35 years.
Contact number: 07365867816
Margaret is on the Safeguarding team and can be approached if anyone has any concerns about young or vunerable people. She is also responsible for keeping the electoral roll up to date. If you wish to be on this roll, Margaret is the person to contact.
Tim not only bell rings, leads us in prayer, is a cantor for the psalm, serves but he is also the treasurer. He will be happy to discuss planned giving and how to set up a standing order for regular giving if you so wish.
Jeanette greets people as they come to a service. She will help you with information, guide you through the service and answer any queries that you might have. She is currently the secretary to the PCC and deals with all the administrative jobs.