The Revd Kelly Betteridge has been named as the new Archdeacon of Bodmin and Director of Intergenerational Church for the Diocese of Truro.

Kelly is currently the vicar of St Nicolas Parish Church in Nuneaton and Priest in Charge of St James Church, Weddington and Caldecote.

Kelly, who will be moving to the diocese with her husband Simon and cat Benny, brings with her a wealth of experience in youth, children and families work with a special focus on Intergenerational Church.

After graduating in 1992 with a degree in education and theology, Kelly began work as a youth and children’s worker. While later working for the Church Pastoral Aid Society (CPAS), she was involved in training and consultancy work with leaders, writing resources and shaping policy relating to children’s ministry. She then became the society’s Intergenerational Church specialist. Having completed her MA in contextual theology in 2010, she was priested in 2011. It is these range of experiences that Kelly hopes to put to good use when she arrives in the Diocese of Truro.

“I want to focus on three things – enabling the church to be more intergenerational in nature; seeing it grow and flourish with every church discovering something about what it means in their own context. Ensuring mission is central to church life and made easier by the way we facilitate church communities. And to be creative and encouraging in supporting clergy because it can be a really lonely and isolating role and you can feel that you are out on a limb.”

Kelly’s background in rural and urban churches will stand her in good stead as she moves to Cornwall, a county she is keen to get to know. “I have holidayed in Cornwall but I don’t know it well. I am looking forward to discovering new relationships and opportunities that I can’t even imagine yet. I excited to discover the creativity in Cornwall and my husband loves walking so I am sure we will be doing that.”

In perhaps a sign of what the future held, Kelly had originally been signed up to lead the ordination retreat for last year’s new deacons and priests. With its postponement due to Covid-19, Kelly had been asked to lead this year’s retreat instead. Something she will now do as Archdeacon instead of guest.

The Rt Revd Philip Mounstephen, Bishop of Truro, said: “I’m delighted to welcome Kelly here as Archdeacon of Bodmin and Director of Intergenerational Church. Her own rural background, significant experience of church growth and long-standing commitment to developing a flourishing church community embracing people of all ages, will stand her in very good stead in her new role. I look forward very much to welcoming her and Simon into the family of the Diocese of Truro.”

Kelly will take over from the Venerable Audrey Elkington, who is leaving the post at the end of February to return to the north of England. While her start date has yet to be confirmed, it is expected that Kelly will be in post by late spring or early summer.