Wooler churchman prepares to say his goodbyes after 32 years

Rev Canon Bob Burston and his wife Sue.
Rev Canon Bob Burston and his wife Sue.

A special service is being held to mark the retirement of a popular priest.

After 32 years as rector, Rev Canon Bob Burston is retiring from his position this September.

Bob has been a priest in the Newcastle Diocese for 44 years and came to Wooler from Alwinton in 1983, playing an active part in the lives of people in Glendale and throughout Northumberland.

Right from its start he has been involved with Glendale Gateway Trust and he remains a trustee.

He chaired Community Action Northumberland for four years in the 1990s and is now a vice-president of the organisation.

Bob is readily recognised throughout the area and especially in Wooler when he walks around the town undertaking his duties and stopping frequently to talk to parishioners, residents and visitors as he finds them.

He’s looking forward to spending more time with his wife Sue, who has been a great support to him and to Christian Aid where she’s raised thousands of pounds over the past few years.

“It’ll be great being able to travel to see our sons more often – and the grandchildren,” he said.

“I’m still staggered at the beauty of this place and the warmth of its people, and as I get older, I appreciate it even more.”

Bob is also looking forward to devoting more time to gardening and to his beloved dahlias.

During the inevitable vacancy, the area dean and archdeacon, together with Rev Marion Penfold, will ensure that worship continues in churches throughout Glendale.

A service of thanksgiving for Rev Canon Burston’s ministry in Glendale will be held on Tuesday, September 8, at 7pm at St Mary’s Church in Wooler. Everyone is welcome to attend the service.