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Our People

Capernwray has a board of trustees and is run by permanent staff members and temporary voluntary workers.


Derek Burnside

Bible School Principal

Derek has been Principal since autumn 2017. He is married to Penny. He enjoys cycling, squash, swimming and table-tennis, and supports Manchester City.

Derek has guest-lectured at Capernwray and other Torchbearers schools since 2001. He has previously been an RE teacher, a UCCF Staff Worker, and was for 22 years on the staff / leadership team of Belmont Chapel, Exeter.

Dougie Roy

Holidays and Events Manager

Dougie plans the holiday and conference programme, which he has been doing since 2003. He is married to Lisa, who he met in Australia, and they have two children, born while living at Capernwray. He enjoys tinkering with motorbikes and gardening, as well as family holidays to Australia, Italy or Scotland.

Dougie came on Capernwray’s Youth Weeks as a teenager, made friends, and was impacted by teaching about Jesus on the Cross. He taught car mechanics in Glasgow, worked in the motor industry, co-ordinated youth work at a church in Perth, Australia, and delivered a course to help people find employment. But he most enjoyed organising youth camps. He studied at the Bible School in 1994/95, and volunteered here for a year after that.

Mike Gregory

Finance and Facilities Manager

Mike helps to manage the finances of Capernwray & plan some of the various projects that need undertaking. He enjoys getting out walking with his wife and 2 children, trying to be creative in the kitchen, swimming and playing board games with friends.

Mike grew up just a few miles away from Capernwray, before moving to Newcastle to study Economics and then Birmingham where he spent 10 years working in Finance for various companies. He is now back in a village near Capernwray and enjoying the beautiful scenery and absence of Spaghetti Junction.

Julie Burrows

Operations Manager

After studying Law at Oxford University, Julie worked for 18 years in London as a Solicitor and senior manager in various Government departments including Defence and Transport.  She left Westminster in order to teach her 3 children full-time at home. 

Julie now lives in Burton-in-Kendal, where her husband, Graham, is the Vicar. Having enjoyed getting to know the Capernwray students attached to the Burton and Holme churches over the last few years, Julie is delighted now to be serving at Capernwray, managing the operation of the central services which support the Bible School, Holiday Programme and Events.

Matt Holderness

Marketing and Design Manager

Matt joined Capernwray after becoming a Christian later in his life. He has degrees in Marketing, Management and Theology and previously worked at Kendal College. He is responsible for the promotion of Capernwray and the communication of what we do.

Matt is married to Laura, has four children and lives in Kendal. In his spare time he loves to read books and drink coffee, which with four kids isn’t that often!

Graih Lewin


Graih helps keep the place clean and ready for the Lord to use, assisted by students, and volunteer staff during the holidays. She also looks after the health of students, staff and guests, and enjoys being creative when refurbishing rooms.

Graih has worked at Capernwray since 1984, after studying here in 82/83. She came from Barrow-in-Furness and has lived and worked in the Isle of Man, where her unusual first name comes from. She used to work in residential care with elderly people and children with physical and mental disabilities.

Matty Wraight

Male Dean of Students

Matty is responsible for taking care of the pastoral needs of the students, in particular the male students. He is married to Jem, our Outreach Coordinator and they have a boy called Ezra. In his spare time Matty loves to do anything that is sporty, and try to play as much football as his wife lets him. He also loves to write lyrics and spoken word. 

Matty previously was a careers coach for a company called Positive Footprints and planted a church in Burnley called New Hope which was part of a wider charity called Burnley Pioneer Project.

Hester Martin

Female Dean of Students

Hester’s role includes women’s pastoral care, netball coaching and Capernwray missions.

She first walked through the old front door of the Hall as a 10-year-old. Capernwray holidays have been significant for her walk with the Lord, both as a guest and volunteer.

Hester was a student at Portantorchas, the Torchbearer centre in Costa Rica, and also volunteered at Rio Vida in Spain. After graduating from Royal Holloway, University of London, she spent a year as an intern at Capernwray.

Kim Lee

Student Studies Co-ordinator

Kim oversees the students’ assignments, and lectures on the topics of Prayer, The Father Heart of God and World Religions. During the holidays she helps in various ways on the Guest team. She enjoys reading, pottering in the garden, going to tea shops, and being out in God’s creation.

Kim was a Bible School student in 1993/94, where her relationship with God grew and He put Capernwray’s ministry on her heart. After six years of work and study, she returned to work on staff in 2000.

Hazel Edmunds

Senior Chef

Hazel is Scottish, and is one of Capernwray’s resident chefs. She loves baking sweet things (which Jonathan sometimes pops in and pinches fresh from the oven!).

She also enjoys being outdoors and capturing life’s fleeting moments (landscapes and portraits) using her digital camera or old box Brownie with a rare 127 film. She has a BA in photography.

Naemi Ellershaw

Dining Hall and Beehive Supervisor

Naemi leads a team of volunteers serving guests and students in the Dining Hall and Beehive, the on-site coffee shop. She also loves going for walks, spending time with friends and listening to anything (or anyone) musical.

Naemi left her home in Germany in 2015 to study at Capernwray, and stayed on as a volunteer. Before coming to England she met God in a new way. In a dark place, she found life, joy and freedom in Jesus, and loves seeing others find the same.

Sofi Barabaschi

Assistant Housekeeper

Sofi came for the first time as a volunteer to help out in the Kitchen/Dining Hall in 2015. Since then she has been a student, an intern and has helped managing the dining hall for a little while.
After spending a year abroad in Switzerland she decided to come back and join the housekeeping team as a full time assistant. She is originally from Rosario, Argentina and is married to Eric (one of our chefs). Sofi really enjoys getting to know people and has also a big passion for children. She also really enjoys running and playing netball.

Jen Rundle

Holidays Administrator

Jen was a student at Capernwray in 1994-95 since then she has trained as an outdoor Education Instructor, worked in Air Traffic Control in the RAF and also graduated from Moorlands Bible College with a degree in Applied Theology.

She and her son Jacob now live in the local area and after volunteering and working as assistant to our housekeeper Graih, Jen has recently become our Holidays Administrator.

Heather Tallents

IT/AV Co-ordinator

Heather first came to Capernwray as a teenager to the International Youth Weeks, where she first met the Lord and came to know Him personally. She has since returned as a volunteer on the Guest Team and as the IT Assistant, before joining the staff team in November 2018.

Before Capernwray, Heather graduated with a Chemistry degree from the University of Bristol and enjoys dancing, singing and drinking tea with friends.

Stephen Baxendale

Sports Coordinator

Stephen is responsible for running and overseeing the sports programme at Capernwray. He grew up in the area and currently lives in Kendal. He has a degree in Modern Languages (Spanish & French) and Business from Newcastle University. He loves sport, especially football and table tennis. He also loves listening to music and dancing.

Mel HollAway

Assistant Student Studies Co-ordinator

Mel assists Kim Lee with the administration of the Bible School Studies programme and helps with the marking and verifying of students’ assignments. She enjoys walking, swimming, reading and ‘posh’ camping.

Mel has previously worked as a Church Administrator, a Special Needs Support Assistant and enjoyed teaching ESOL for a  number of years.


Michael Thompson

Chair of Trustees

Michael is a former Bible School student and a recently retired tax lawyer who founded and headed up the London Tax Group. He specialised in Corporate Law and Mergers and Acquisitions. His Masters Degree is in Classics and Law. 

alan wadsworth


Alan is the Pastor of Caton Baptist Church where he regularly receives our students on outreach placements. He has worked in a number of roles within churches, Christian organisations including Scripture Union, and has a Masters Degree in Theology.

neil wrigley


Neil is a regular holiday guest and joined the Board in the 1990’s while running his own business as an Independent Financial Advisor. He is now retired but still actively involved as a member of the Gideons.

seidel abEL boanerges


Seidel previously worked as Outreach Coordinator at Capernwray. He currently teaches practical theology subjects at Spurgeon’s College, London where he is the Dean of Ministerial Formation.


terry morrison

Regional Representative

Terry worked in the public sector for many years. He has been involved in Christian youthwork and cross-community programmes inlcuding a long relationship with Capernwray. He is married to Mary and together they have children and grandchildren. Terry enjoys meeting people and encouraging others in their Christian faith.

mary morrison

Regional Representative

Mary also worked for many years in the public sector and she has a passion for inspiring young people and families in their faith, particularly in connection with the ministry of Capernwray. Mary loves meeting and encouraging other people; together with travel, especially to Thailand, the home of their adopted son.

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