Trustees and Council of Reference

We thank God for the people who bring governance and oversight to CPAS, and who freely give their time to support the General Director and senior staff in shaping strategy and policy.


CPAS is both a charity and a company limited by guarantee. The charity is governed by a body of 12 trustees, which is responsible for policy and oversight of its work and ministry. The CPAS trustees can be contacted via

The Rev Mark Tanner (Chair of Trustees)

Mark is married to Lindsay and they have two teenage children. They love living and serving in the North West where Mark is the Bishop of Chester. His national responsibilities include membership of the Church of England's Ministry Council and oversight of the church's work in selection and discernment for public ministry.

Since coming to a living faith in Christ as a boy, Mark has served in various church roles, pre- and post-ordination. These include youth work in Coventry, Vicaring in Doncaster and Ripon, serving as an Area Dean, being part of the New Wine leadership team, and engaging as a part-time Army Chaplain. Most latterly he was Warden of Cranmer Hall and Vice-Principal of St John's College Durham, during which time he served on General Synod and helped co-ordinate theological education nationally.

He has written in the areas of leadership, preaching, church governance, and spirituality. Mark enjoys running, fixing Land Rovers, riding motorbikes, discovering local ales, and walking his dog.

Mrs Sarah Gough (Vice-CHAIR)

Sarah is Interim Chief Operating Officer at African Prisons Project prior to which she was Finance Director at New Wine for five years and Operations Manager at St Stephens Twickenham for six years.

Since becoming a Christian in her teens Sarah has consistently tried to put God at the centre of her life in all that she does. She hopes that this approach to life, along with her charity finance and governance experience gained during many years working in the sector both within charities and at PwC, will help her at CPAS.

Sarah has always wished London had more mountains so skiing features regularly in holidays, including running a chalet for a season between jobs with her husband Richard.

The ven Andy Piggott (VICE-CHAIR)

Andy was Archdeacon of Bath from 2005-2017. Prior to this he served at CPAS from 1999-2005 as Ministry and Vocations Adviser, Acting General Director and Patronage Secretary.

Before that he was incumbent of a CPAS patronage parish in North Staffordshire, served as a team vicar in Kidderminster and as curate in the Diocese of Birmingham. Way back in the last century he taught economics in Birmingham where he met his wife Ruth. They now have two married daughters, two sons-in-law and two young grandsons. They fully expect two of these three numbers to remain constant, but are making no predictions about the final one. 


Mrs Jenny Bray

Jenny lives in Limehouse, east London with her husband Richard, who is rector of St Anne's, and their four children aged 20 months up to nine years. Most of Jenny's time is spent keeping the show on the road at home, but enjoys being involved wherever able within the ministry of her church. 

Her involvement with CPAS came about through Ventures, having served as a leader and then co-overall leader in the past for a total of about ten years. Serving as a trustee for Ventures gave her first insights into the wider ministry of CPAS - particularly during the process of preparing for the merger of the two charities. 

This has been furthered by being a member of the CPAS council. Pre-children Jenny worked as a solicitor, before studying on the Cornhill Training Course whilst working for her then church.

Miss Debbie Buggs

Debbie is a chartered accountant working in the insurance industry and she sits on the General Synod of the Church of England as a lay representative of the London diocese.  She is a member of the Bishop’s Council and Finance Committee in the London diocese. 

She has recently served as a governor for an independent boarding school and has been involved with Ventures and other similar holidays for many years. 

She goes to St Helen’s Church, Bishopsgate, London. Debbie enjoys spending her free time with her niece and nephews.


Simon works for the Diocese of Liverpool as Director of Vocations, working to encourage people into all kinds of lay and ordained ministry, though a fair bit of that time is taken up with the 'DDO' role working with people going through the discernment process for ordained ministry.

He lives in Chester and is part of the ministry and leadership team at St Mark's Saltney. Before being ordained over 20 years ago, he worked as an IT consultant - and in between has been a curate in Birkenhead, a priest-in-charge in Runcorn, Ministry Development Officer for Chester Diocese, a Leadership Development Adviser for CPAS and a Director of Studies with the All Saints course, training people across the north-west for ordained and Reader ministry.

Simon tries to maintain fitness by repeatedly picking up heavy objects and putting them down again, though is even happier when playing guitar. His home church has a strong link with the Sandiley Venture, where two of his teenage children are regulars. Before becoming a trustee, Simon was on the CPAS Council of Reference from 2012.

Mrs Ellie Doolan

Ellie is married to Ben and they live in Newcastle upon Tyne. Together they lead St Thomas' which is the Resource Church for the Diocese of Newcastle. Having grown up and lived in the North of England almost her whole life, Ellie is longing to see the North transformed with the good news of Jesus. 

Ellie has loved serving within the Church in her different jobs over the years ranging from working for Church Army, as a church administrator and now currently as PA to the Bishop of Beverley. 

Ellie's big passions in life are people and being able to share life with others around the dining table. She also loves travelling to new places and exploring the amazing city she lives in, and the beautiful Northumbrian coast line.

THE REV Tamsin Merchant

People placeholder.jpgTamsin is vicar of St Mary Hornsey Rise Islington, where she's served for two years. She is married to Rob and they have two miniature dachshunds, who love to bark & cuddle.

Tamsin spent time working with Jackie Pullinger in Hong Kong when she left school, and this set a passion for serving God. She trained as a fine artist in London, and worked in the early days of the internet industry, before training to become a vicar. Tamsin met Rob at Wycliffe Hall, and surprised herself by overturning a long held promise that she would never go to Bible college or marry a vicar by doing both.

She served her curacy with Rob at St John's Harborne, setting up Alpha, and helping to develop mission within the church. From there it was to be Chaplain at the University of Gloucestershire. Tamsin brings a passion for enabling people to have a go, to discover their gifts and above all to discover the amazing, surpassing love of Jesus Christ. 

The rev Paul Peterson

Paul's first involvement with CPAS came as a teenager whilst attending Limpsfield CYFA Venture with a group of friends, which proved to be an experience that transformed his life and prompted a faith commitment. He was inspired by the care shown for each individual and the way in which faith was made real through the talks, dorm times and relationships. Paul's involvement with Ventures has continued to the present day and he now oversees a group of Ventures at Haslemere in Surrey - developing leaders, growing the church support base and ultimately seeing lives transformed by Christ. His two teenage sons share this love of Ventures. Paul states that he has also been blessed by CPAS with the Arrow Leadership programme and numerous resources.

He combines the Haslemere role with a half time post as Associate Minister at Christ Church Downend in North Bristol, occasionally finding time to unwind with a game of cricket, good food and breathtaking scenery – preferably all in the same package! His passion for seeing young lives transformed and leaders developed draws Paul to the trustee body.

mr rod Street

Rod is a management consultant who went independent this year having previously been a Partner with PwC and IBM where, in addition to client work, he led various parts of the practice.

He became a Christian in his teens and moved with a real sense of calling into business after university. He is married to Carol and has a grown-up son. He has previously been a CPAS trustee and Ventures trustee and is currently on the board of Feba. He has been actively involved in church through preaching, teaching and leadership, including spending several years chairing the leadership team at a previous church and leading a youth group. He would hope to bring commercial skills and a passion for leadership development into his role as trustee.

MR richard montgomery

Richard worked for more than thirty years in senior positions in the oil industry living in various parts of the world. He has been chair of a grant making charity giving £2 million annually to support the poor and vulnerable, was until recently the Managing Director of the London Institute for Contemporary Christianity and is currently on the board of the London City Mission.

Richard's wife works for a church in Twickenham where they live and worship, and they have three sons who have enjoyed Ventures but have since grown up and have left home. Richard is a keen cyclist and some would say also spends too much time watching it on television.


Council of reference

The Council of Reference offers expertise and experience, informing and encouraging the ministry of CPAS and advocating our mission and vision. Members can be contacted via

The Rev Chris Balding
The Rev Canon Mark Brown 

The Rev Stuart Browning
Dr Nick Burt
The Rev Richard Coombs 
The Rev Leslie Curry 
The Rev Roger Driver
The Rev Paul Dundas
The Rev Mones Farah
The Rev Andrew Fearnley
The Rev (Sqn Ldr) Geoffrey Firth
The Rev David Hammond
The Rev John Hookway 
The Rev Dr Emma Ineson (Chair)
Mrs Davina Irwin-Clark
Captain Nicholas Lebey
The Rev Catharine Mabuza
The Rev Jane Morris
The Rev Alex Oehring
The Rev Dr Philip Plyming
The Rev Eddie Scrase-Field 
Mrs Sarah Slater 
The Rev Richard Stordy
The Ven William Strange
The Rev Simon Talbot
The Rev Abi Todd

Mrs Nikki Tomkins