Who we are
Patrons of the Retreat Association
We are very grateful to each of our patrons for their generosity in lending support to our work. They share with us a passionate belief in the value of stillness and silence and their involvement will be a great encouragement to those who seek to deepen their faith journey through retreats and reflective activities.
Dr Rowan Williams
Rowan Williams is a great supporter of the work of retreat centres, has contributed articles to the Retreats handbook and was a speaker at the 2015 Retreat Association Conference.
Abbot Christopher Jamison OSB
In 2017 he was elected Abbot President of the English Benedictine Congregation. Abbot Christopher has taken an active role as patron, taking part in a number of Retreat Association conferences and Summer Events.
Margaret is an enthusiastic supporter of the work of the Retreat Association and led some memorable singing workshops at the 2015 Retreat Association Conference.
Her works include Sanctus Dominus, O Magnum Mysterium and Ave Maria.
Sara has been a contributor to our Retreats handbook and was guest speaker at our 2018 conference. We warmly welcome Sara to join us and look forward to working with her in the future.
Rev Graham Sparkes
Since becoming patron, Graham has been actively involved in many of the Retreat Association events, including the 2012, 2015 and 2018 Retreat Association Conferences and our annual Summer Events.
Trustees of the Retreat Association
The trustees of the Retreat Association are responsible for the governance of the organisation and for guiding its vision and mission. They work with the Director to develop the overall strategy of the Retreat Association.
The trustees are unpaid volunteers and meet three times a year, some also serving on sub-committees to provide additional support for the work of the organisation.
Our current trustees are:
Miss Sue Bennett
Mrs Susan Chastney
Mr Stewart McCredie
Mr Michael O’Halloran (Chair)
Rev Tim Mountain
Rev Carol Smith
Miss Shirley Taylor
Fr David Tobin
Retreat Association Staff
Alison is the Director of the Retreat Association, with overall responsibility for the leadership of the charity. Alison has a professional background in book publishing and the charity sector. She is also a trained spiritual director and leads quiet days and retreats.
Clare is responsible for looking after the administrative activities of the charity. She explains, 'Having always had an interest in psychology and spirituality, and a desire to understand the human essence, it was a natural choice to contribute to The Retreat Association'.
Retreat Association extended team
Jill helps out in a number of ways, in particular with the preparation of our annual handbook, Retreats, and with the planning of our three-yearly Conference. Jill is also an active member of the Catholic Spirituality Network CSN.
Carol works on the design of our publicity material and newsletters. She lives in Devon with her husband, son and dog, and also makes and sells her own jewellery via her website 'Nonsisa'.
Alan of the Alpha Xperience is responsible for the design and typesetting of our annual Retreats handbook and some of our other resources such as our icon cards.
Caroline is a writer and editor helping us with the Retreats handbook and a number of other projects. She brings many years' experience of working in the charity sector. Caroline lives in Buckinghamshire with her husband, son, dog and three horses.
Tom is a volunteer and has offered his skills as a marketing professional to design and support our new website. Tom has his own company Divergent Path which provides a range of marketing services. He loves to travel, read history books and go to the theatre.