UNI-NEWS 199th Issue 21st September 2018

1. Recruitment of Chief Officer

The post of Chief Officer of The General Assembly of Unitarian and Free Christian Churches has now been advertised.

The Chief Officer will provide transformational leadership and support to the General Assembly in the promotion of Unitarian values and beliefs. The role will lead on:

  • Creating and implementing a long-term transformational strategy for the GA in order to support the growth of Unitarianism and Free Religion
  • Developing an external communications strategy to raise the public profile of the work of the General Assembly and its members.
  • Working with ecumenical and interfaith leaders and other groups to promote cooperation and freedom of belief.
  • Cultivating good internal communications with Unitarians and Free Christians across Great Britain.

Further information on the position and how to apply can be found on the recruitment page on the General Assembly website https://www.unitarian.org.uk/pages/recruitment

Please note the deadline for application is 19 October 2018.

Executive Committee


2. Ministerial training

Applications for Ministry Training are now open. Guidance and an application form can be found on the General Assembly website at https://www.unitarian.org.uk/news/apply-ministry-training

If you have any questions or issues about the application process for ministry training please contact Simon Bland on behalf of the Interview Panel (Email: sbland@unitarian.org.uk)

Please note that the application process is now online and closes on 08 October 2018.

Interview Panel


3. Unitarian Women's Group Conference "Empty Pockets"

The Unitarian Women's Group Conference "Empty Pockets" will take place from 19 to 21 October 2018 at The Nightingale Centre, Great Hucklow, Derbyshire. 

Join Unitarian women for another weekend of friendship and fun.  We'll consider how the negative impacts of austerity measures have fallen disproportionally on women and how we can respond to it.  This is a weekend where women learn from each other and we would love you to be there with us. Book now, there are still places available. Contact Margaret Robinson at margaretrobinson81@gmail.com for more information or a booking form. 

Margaret Robinson

UWG Conference Secretary 


4. New Grant Opportunity

Places of Worship: ‘Inspiring Ideas’ has opened for applications. It’s a new strategic funding initiative that welcomes applications from projects looking to explore innovative ideas and test new approaches to managing, caring for, and funding historic places of worship, of all faiths and denominations.

Whilst this may be of interest to some chapels, the grant programme could also be used to develop district-wide ideas and initiatives. Collaborations on booking systems, acoustic improvements to facilitate wider musical use of buildings etc.

Further details can be found at:


Expressions of interest must be received by 14 October 2018.

Simon Bland

Ministry and Congregation Support Officer


5. Job vacancy - Cross Street Chapel, Manchester

Cross Street Chapel, Manchester are recruiting for a Chapel Administrator. Sixteen hours per week. £10,816 per annum. (Variable hours: four days or evenings out of seven).

 For further information and an application form: Please contact: keeper@crossstchapel.org.uk

 Closing date for applications: 24 September 2018

Cross Street Chapel, Manchester


6. Rev John Harley – Contact details

Please note that Rev John Harley can now be contacted on:



7. Media Coverage

Octagon Chapel, Norwich “Historic Chapel tucked away in Norwich in the clear” (Eastern Daily Press, 19 August 2018)


Newington Green “£1.8m Lottery Win for Historic meeting place” (Islington Gazette, 7 September 2018)


also in Islington Life


An obituary for Stephanie Saville, who was well known in Unitarian circles, appeared in The Guardian (13 July 2018)


On BBC Radio Suffolk on Sunday mornings they have a newspaper coverage section with different local people from various congregations invited to come and choose the 6 topical articles they would like to discuss (briefly) and they also have the chance to mention something about their own church/meeting house. Tessa Forsdike, the editor of the 'Ipswich Unitarian' is now on the rota to take part every 8 weeks or so. She last did the session on Sunday 5 August and is next due to take part on Sunday 21 October. There are two discussions, the first starting at 7.20. It means getting up and being at the radio station by 6.30! It is possible to listen on IPlayer radio.