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Who’s Who


The Dean – Dr Tim Stratford

Tim has been Dean of Chester since September 2018. He arrived as an experienced priest and published author. Having grown up in Liverpool he had significant experience of city and cathedral ministry from his time in the Diocese of Liverpool and through his work as Domestic Chaplain to the former Bishop of Liverpool, Bishop David Sheppard. Tim has since worked on some of Liverpool’s largest outer city housing estates during his time as Rector of Kirkby and a vicar in Norris Green. He was Archdeacon of Leicester prior to arriving here as Dean and says that both the multi-cultural city environment and surrounding rolling countryside of Leicestershire have left him with a deep love of that place. Tim is a keen cyclist and enjoys the outdoors as well as art that provokes and challenges.



Vice Dean and Canon Missioner – Jane Brooke

Jane Brooke is our Canon Missioner and Vice Dean. She flourishes in education, community projects and exhibitions by looking outwards and making links with the city and the diocese. Jane has a Bachelor of Education degree specialising in literature and holds a degree in Maths. For most of her ministry, Jane has been a supporting minister working with schools and taught RE for many years. She has worked for Ofsted and for the Church of England as a Church School Inspector, therefore, leads with educational ideas.

Canon for Worship and Spirituality – Rosie Woodall

Rosie was installed as our Canon for Worship and Spirituality in 2023. She grew up in Jersey in the Channel Islands and moved to the UK to study Wildlife Biology at Newcastle University. After graduating, she spent time as chaplaincy assistant and then Marketing and Events Officer at the University of West of England in Bristol. A long-term calling to ordained ministry finally led to ordination in 2010 and she served a curacy in the Benefice of Gloucester City and Hempsted, before a first incumbency as Vicar of the Bisley Benefice in the beautiful South Cotswolds. In 2014, she became Chaplain to the Bishop of Leicester, and in 2021 moved to be Interim Chaplain to the Bishop of Chelmsford.


Dean’s Vicar – Jonathon Green

Jonathon was born on the Isle of Man and emigrated to England in his early twenties to study hotel and hospitality management.  After some time in hotel management, he attended Emmanuel Bible College, Birkenhead and went on to assist in free churches in Birkenhead and Preston.  During this time, he married and had three children, two of whom are now ordained.  From Preston he moved to Sheffield to manage Whirlow Grange, the Diocesan Retreat House, for sixteen years before moving to Rydal Hall in Cumbria where he was the manager for ten years.  During his time with Carlisle Diocese, he was ordained and served his curacy in Rydal and Grasmere.

Jonathon moved to Foxhill in 2016 and served as Director for seven years before joining the team at Chester Cathedral.

Curate – Tina Lightfoot

Tina was born in Crewe, grew up in Ellesmere Port and then moved to London to train as a nurse. She returned to Chester four years later where she met and married her husband Mike. They have two wonderful sons, two amazing daughters-in-law and three beautiful grandchildren! After 48 years working in the NHS she discerned God was calling her to ordained ministry, and was ordained Deacon in July 2022 and was licensed to serve her curacy both at St James’ Church Christleton and here at the Cathedral.


The legal name of Chester Cathedral is The Cathedral Church of Christ and the Blessed Virgin Mary.  It is governed by the Chapter and the Cathedral Leadership Team.  They are supported by other statutory and non-statutory committees.

Chester Cathedral Chapter

The Dean – is the senior member of clergy who chairs the Chapter and leads on strategy and direction.

The Chapter Clerk and Executive Director – is the most senior layperson, responsible for day-to-day operation of the Cathedral.

Chapter non-executive members:
Dr Martin Smith – Senior Non-Executive Member (SNEM)
Dr Anna Sung
Dr Mary Horbury
Mr Ian Watmore

Executive Members:
Revd Canon Jane Brooke
Revd Canon Rosie Woodall

Non-executive non-members:
Jon Turley – Commercial Director
Kevin Baxter – Communications Director
Sharon Scarlett – Director of Culture and Cathedral Safeguarding Officer
and Suzi Humphries (Project Manager)

Chester Cathedral Nomination Committee
Our Nominations Committee comprises of the following people, appointed by the current executive members of Chapter: John de Newtown, Norman Goodwin, and Francis Hulbert with Jo Sykes as Chair.  Our Executive Director and Dean attend all meetings.  Our People and Administration Officer facilitates the administration and recording of the Nominations Committee

John de Newtown is Director of his own company, directing and managing consultancy activities and developing and supporting the implementation of new management procedures, among many other aspects of management practices.

Norman Goodwin recently retired as Chief Executive of Adoption Matters and has been responsible for the overall management and leadership of the company from 1985 until 2022.  He was honoured with a CBE in 2015 for services to social work and adoption.

Fran Hulbert is the former Director of Skills Policy at the Northwest Regional Development Agency.  She has had an extensive and varied career including a close association with the University of Chester and is a Lay Canon of Chester Cathedral.  Fran currently chairs the Cathedral’s Fabric Advisory Committee

Jo Sykes is former Director of Registry Services at what is now the University of Chester; she was appointed a Deputy Lieutenant for Cheshire in 2013.  Jo has recently retired as Vice-Chairman and Director of The Hammond and as Chair of The Chester Mystery Plays with which she has had a long association; she is now a Vice-President of the Mystery Plays company.  Jo has had a close involvement with the Cathedral for many years and has agreed to assist with the development of its new committee structure.