John was brought up in Dorset and, after leaving school, worked for four years with an agricultural merchant before going on to study farm management at Merrist Wood College for a year. From college John joined the Lee Abbey Community in North Devon helping on the farm. Later he ran a small arable and dairy farm in Sussex before returning to the Community for a further year.
In January 1976 John joined the Church Mission Society spending time at their training college, Crowther Hall, in Selly Oak, Birmingham, and in November of the same year he went to Northern Nigeria as an agriculturalist based in Kafanchan in the Diocese of Kaduna. having become a Christian at a Scripture Union Camp whilst at school serving overseas had always been a possibility.
After twelve years in Nigeria John returned to this country and spent a year studying for a Diploma in Agricultural Extension at Reading University after which he joined Tearfund as Regional Manager for Africa. John knew he had the job just three days before marrying Liz whom he had met in Nigeria ten years earlier when she was working at Wusasa Hospital also in the Diocese of Kaduna. As work at Tearfund developed the Africa Region was divided and John concentrated on East and Southern Africa from 1993.
At the end of 2003 John left Tearfund and was eventually selected to train for two years for ordination on the Salisbury based ‘STETS’ course. At the end of the lengthy selection process John returned to Tearfund for much of 2005 to help lead their response to the Boxing Day Tsunami. On completion of the ordination course John was ordained in Coventry Cathedral on 1st; July 2007 and served for four years as curate at Saint Giles’ Church, Exhall a busy parish that includes junction three of the M6 within its boundaries.
John was licensed as Associate Minister to the Stourdene Benefice in June 2011.
Liz, John's wife was, until her retirement, a doctor specialising in the care of the elderly. Her family come from Scotland but she was brought up in Loughborough. Liz trained in Manchester and was a consultant at Saint Peter’s Hospital, Chertsey, Surrey but after moving to Warwickshire she worked at the George Eliot Hospital in Nuneaton.