One of the many delights of my role is the opportunity to visit parts of our vast and beautiful diocese. The novelty factor is further enhanced by the learning curve that I am on regarding the geography of our patch and the history of its many buildings. This week’s Heads of Department residential enabled me to spend two days in the magnificent surroundings of Ripon College, Cuddesdon. This august institution was founded in 1853 by the son of William Wilberforce and has the late Robert Runcie as one of its former principals. It was both humbling and inspirational to spend some precious time in this wonderful place of theological learning and teaching with talented and committed senior colleagues from the Diocese of Oxford.

           

Today, 15 November, sees me journey to the south eastern corner of the Diocese of Oxford. My visit to The Royal School, Windsor has been in the diary since the summer and I have been looking forward to spending an afternoon at this unique little school. It pre-dates Cuddesdon by 10 years and owes its existence to Queen Victoria who established it to provide education for the children of the Royal Household at nearby Windsor Castle. Delightfully located in the middle of Windsor Great Park, it is led by Bev Coombridge who prior to taking up this role worked in the Kingdom of Bahrain. In fact, the last time we met I was dressed in pantomime dame’s regalia as the ebullient Edna Bucket in ‘Snow White’. However, that is a story for another day……………

Till next week.
Tony