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Former journalist takes on head role at Church

A former regional press editor who left the newsroom to become a Methodist minister is to take on a senior position in the Methodist Church’s London central office.

The Rev Gareth Hill, pictured left, previous head of postgraduate journalism at Cornwall College, is to become head of mission and advocacy for the Methodist Church from September.

Gareth started his journalism career on his home town newspaper the Free Press, in Pontypool, before moving to the South Essex Recorders as a sports writer.

In 1979 he moved to the South Wales Echo where he spent six years as a sub-editor and deputy features editor before returning to Pontypool where he edited the Free Press Series.

From 1991 to 2001 he was head of journalism at Cornwall College in Redruth, Cornwall, training more than 300 newspaper reporters on a programme accredited by the National Council for the Training of Journalists.

Gareth became a minister in 1999 in Camborne and moved to Wadebridge in 2001 to head up four churches. He went on to pioneer the Tubestation surf church in Polzeath.

He leaves Cornwall after almost 20 years.

Gareth, 54, has been a pioneer minister on the Roseland Peninsula near Truro since September 2008, working to develop relationships with people who would not normally have anything to do with the church.

Said Gareth: “The move has come about suddenly and I have quite mixed feelings.

“I’m excited about the new job but there is so much that I’ll miss about Cornwall and the friends we have made here.”

His new job involves heading a group of people responsible for a range of work in the Methodist Church’s central office team.

This includes world church links, heritage & mission, public issues and political engagement, marketing and fundraising, creative resources, communications and media.