Part Time Incumbent - Low Marple

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Low Marple

St. Martin’s, Low Marple ( – a Grade 2* listed building – was commissioned in 1868 by the owners of Brabyns Hall. Enthusiastic followers of the Oxford Movement, they wanted a church that would reflect the theological and architectural traditions of Anglo-Catholic ritual. It was completed in 1870. The Lady Chapel was added in 1896 and the Christopher Chapel in 1909. It has an impressive Arts and Crafts interior: in 2014, St. Martin’s Heritage Trust ( was granted charitable status to help preserve and publicise this precious piece of artistic heritage.

Worship is in the Anglo-Catholic tradition. Clergy wear vestments, there is a robed choir and altar party (MC, thurifer and two acolytes), and incense is used at all sung Eucharists and major festivals. The church employs an organist/Director of Music and there is a regular SATB choir.

The Archdeacon of Macclesfield, The Venerable Ian Bishop is available for a conversation should you wish. Tel: 01260 272875 or email

Applications should by preference be made to the Archdeacon of Macclesfield USING THE DIOCESAN APPLICATION FORM available on the website. Details of the post can be found on the diocesan website including our diocesan application form.

This appointment is being made with the co-operation of the Patron, Keble College, Oxford

Closing date: Sunday 1 November 2020

Interviews: Monday 23 November 2020

a) The parish of St. Martin’s (pop. approx. 4,300) lies towards the NE boundary of Marple and Marple Bridge (combined pop. approx. 23,500), four miles from Stockport and nine miles from Manchester. It is on the edge of the Peak District but within easy reach of the city (both 25 minutes by train.)

There are 132 people on the Electoral Roll. It is an ageing demographic, although the engagement of the previous incumbent with a number of local Primary Schools, and the community links that have resulted from the popularity of the Church Hall (currently used by 16 groups on a regular basis), have helped to broaden the age profile. This remains, nevertheless, an area on which St. Martin’s recognises it needs to build.

b) Worship is Anglo-Catholic.

Sunday: 8:00 Holy Communion (said)

10:00 Parish Mass (sung)

(3rd Sunday – Family Mass)

6:30 Choral Evensong (1st Sunday)

Evening Prayer (all other Sundays)

Wednesday: 9:30 Holy Communion (said)

Special services include the Advent Service of Light, Nine Lessons and Carols, services for Maunday Thursday and Good Friday and midweek services such as Candlemas and Corpus Christi.

The previous incumbent was Chair of the local ecumenical group, Churches Together in Marple, and led the annual Service of Remembrance. Once a month, clergy and lay visitors administer Holy Communion at two Care Homes. The church runs a stimulating and varied series of Lent courses that are popular with members of other churches.

* Maintaining and protecting the Anglo-Catholic tradition of worship

* Increasing the size of the congregation and broadening the age profile

* Developing community links and building on existing ones

*Sympathy with the Anglo-Catholic tradition

*A commitment to finding ways of increasing the size of the congregation

*The ability to foster a prayerful atmosphere that meets the needs of every member of the congregation and encourages them to develop spiritually

*Excellent organisational, time-management, and communication skills

*The ability to develop the ministry of the church and its lay leadership

*The ability to develop practical ideas for community outreach, and build on existing initiatives

The Diocese of Chester is in the province of York in the Church of England, part of the global Anglican Communion. For more information about our life, ministry and work please visit our website We are linked with the Anglican Church of Melanesia in the Solomon Islands and the Dioceses of Aru and Boga in the Democratic Republic of Congo.

The Diocese covers an area of 1025 square miles, approximately the old Victorian County of Chester, including parts which subsequently became absorbed into Merseyside and Greater Manchester. The Rivers Mersey and Tame approximately delineate the boundary with Liverpool and Manchester. There are areas of dense urban population, mainly in the north, stretching from Birkenhead to East Manchester. There are prosperous suburban regions of West and South Wirral, Chester and south of Manchester, with a mainly rural heartland, bounded by the Derbyshire Pennines and the Welsh Border. The overall population is around 1.6 million.

The position of Diocesan Bishop is currently vacant and the Bishop of Birkenhead is Keith Sinclair currently acting Diocesan Bishop, the position of Bishop of Stockport is also currently vacant.

The Cathedral for the Diocese is in Chester.

The Diocese is divided into two archdeaconries: Chester covering the western half and Macclesfield the eastern, each with nine deaneries. There are 273 parishes, about 100 of which can be described as rural. Compared with many dioceses, there are few teams, and few multi-parish benefices. There are approximately 231 stipendiary clergy. The ministry of Readers and Pastoral Workers is important, with over 400 licensed. The role of self-supporting ministers is increasing, with over 80 in post at present.

Roughly speaking, the Archdeaconry of Macclesfield covers that part of the diocese to the east of the M6, plus the area around Crewe and Nantwich. The Archdeaconry of Chester covers the rest of the diocese to the west of the M6. Each archdeaconry has a broad mix of urban and rural parishes.