People

The Vicar - Paul Deakin

I was ordained as a priest in 2014 after a long career in Engineering Design in the Aircraft and Automotive Sectors. I came to St Cross in May 2016 and I am very happy here. Married to Angela, we have four grown up sons who are all making their way in life through varied careers. I have always enjoyed serving people, primarily through Church youth work and Scouting, but as my family grew up I realised Christ was calling me to serve in a new way. I left Bentley Motors Car Design in 2011 to train residentially for the priesthood through Mirfield College of the Resurrection. This is a monastic community in West Yorkshire, and whilst there I studied a Christian Theology Degree through Sheffield University. My interests have changed in recent years but I have always loved the outdoors and the beauty of the world in which we live. I am also an avid Stockport County fan as they are my home town team. I enjoy spending time with my wife and family and taking a supportive interest in all that they do.

 

 

The Curate - Simon Gowler

I was ordained in July 2018. As a self-supporting minister I am continuing to work four days a week as a solicitor whilst I undertake my ministry at St. Cross. In my professional career I have always wanted to go the extra mile for my clients, having a strong sense of service to others. I now feel extremely privileged to have been called to serve in a very different way in this new vocation. Prior to ordination I had been a Licensed Reader for five years at St. Helen's Church, Northwich. I am contiuning my studies by completing a Master's Degree in Christian Theology through Chester University. I am married to Liz and we have a young daughter. I also have two grown up sons. I like to spend leisure time with my family and I also enjoy reading and travelling when I get the opportunity.

 

 

Licensed Reader - Mary Daw

I enjoyed a varied teaching career; Physical Education in Chester. A hospital school in Dartford and Special Needs in a primary school, and finally as a member of the Home Tuition Team under Essex Education Authority. 

Owen and I have two children, Richard and Elizabeth, and I became involved with the Sunday School and the Youth Group in St. Andrew's Church, Hatfield Peverel.

The course in Christian Studies run by Chelmsford Diocese and a Cursillo weekend were significant factors in my decision to train as a Reader. I was licensed in 2004 and served for twelve years before moving to Plumley in 2016 to live nearer our family.

Owen and I always look forward to exploring the local countryside on our bikes. We enjoy visiting art galleries and have become members of the Dane Valley branch of the National Association of Decorative and Fine Arts Society which meets in Holmes Chapel. I was delighted when Paul agreed for me to be relicensed at Chester Cathedral on October 2016.

 

 

Licensed Reader (finalising training before licensing in October) - Allison Whiteley

I have lived in Knutsford and worshiped at St Cross since 1999. Prior to this I lived in Leeds where I was brought up and where I met and married my husband. I am thus an adopted Yorkshire woman having been born a Lancastrian. I am a self employed IT Contractor, working full time, and a mother to 2 wonderful daughters,  My father was a Reader and some of my most earliest memories are of seeing him preach and leading the Sunday School. I too have led Sunday Schools, run youth groups and from 2011 to 2015 I was a Guide Leader. As my children have grown older I began to feel the call to serve God in a different way. I have served the church for over 30 years in many ways, including the writing of prayers. I felt God was calling me to expand my ministry and to find out more of the theology of my faith. My hope is that through my preaching, teaching and mission work I will help St Cross to grow and respond to the needs of the people of Knutsford.