A NEW rector has been appointed at St Laurence’s Church in Ludlow following the departure of Rev Brian Curnew before Christmas.

The Venerable Colin Williams, who is currently working in Geneva in Switzerland for the Conference of European Churches, is expected to take up his appointment by the end of July.

In a letter to parishioners, he said he was looking forward to coming to the area and had previously been walking in the Shropshire Hills.

A former solicitor, Rev Williams became a priest nearly 30 years ago and most of his working life has been spent in his home area of the north-west of England, although he has been in Geneva since 2005.

He has been general secretary of the Conference of European Churches, which acts as a voice for 124 institutional churches in almost every country in Europe.

He will act as team rector for the Ludlow team ministry, which oversees around a dozen churches, from Onibury in the north to Richards Castle in the south.

Rev Curnew spent 15 years in Ludlow and is now priest in charge of Headcorn and the Suttons in the Diocese of Canterbury.