Jamie Allen (priest)

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Jamie Allen (born 1971) is an Anglican priest.

Early Ministry[edit]

Jamie Allen with daughter Carrie

Full name Timothy James Allen, he is known as Jamie. Allen was raised in Woodbridge, Suffolk.[1] He was ordained as an Anglican priest in 1999,[2] at the age of 28, after first working as a DJ and as a Religious Education and English teacher. He was a curate for 3 years at St Mary's Abbey in the parish of Nuneaton until 2002, when he was appointed Rector of Seend, Bulkington and Poulshot.

A Country Parish[edit]

Jamie Allen and his family were the subject of an eight-part Tiger Aspect Productions British television documentary and reality television programme A Country Parish. This covered the family's move from Nuneaton to three traditional village parishes in Wiltshire. The series was filmed over the course of a year, and examined the life of a clergy family and the dilemmas of parish ministry. The series included stories such as :

  • The re-uniting of an estranged family
  • Fox hunting and Allen's decision not to bless the hounds and horses prior to the opening meet, and the community's response to this
  • Loss and grief, through the story of a missing pet dog, and through deaths and funerals in the parish
  • Allen's taking part in a Peace March against the backdrop of a village of many retired military

The series attracted a large viewing audience and there was huge media attention and interest. In 2003 Jamie moved from Wiltshire and resumed ministry in a less-publicized location.[3] He served as a priest in Buckinghamshire before becoming the vicar of St Andrew's Parish in Great Cornard in late 2005.[4]

Move to Aotearoa New Zealand[edit]

In 2009, Allen moved with his wife, Suzy, and his four children - Danii, Carrie, Katy and Roxy, to be vicar, and then dean, of the newly consecrated Taranaki Cathedral Church of St Mary,[5] New Zealand. The cathedral was consecrated on 6 March 2010,and [6] Allen was installed as its foundational dean.

Carrie Allen[edit]

Earlier in 2009, Allen's second child, Carrie, had been diagnosed with a rare form of soft-tissue cancer - rhabdomyosarcoma. She was given front-line treatment of chemotherapy and radiotherapy, and surgery to remove the lump in her arm. The family moved to New Zealand just as Carrie completed this treatment, and for some time the cancer was in remission. Tragically, it returned meta-statically in 2011. In 2012, a fundraising concert (called "Carrie's Concert") [7] was held at Taranaki Cathedral hosted by Carrie - with over $8000 raised to benefit the Child Cancer Foundation and CanTeen - at which Dave Dobbyn performed.

Carrie died on 15 September 2012.[8][9] As her father was the serving dean at the cathedral, permission was granted for the closed churchyard to be re-opened for her burial.[10]


  1. ^ BBC: A Country Parish.
  2. ^ " "Ordination". Coventry Evening Telegraph. 2000-07-01. 
  3. ^ "TV vicar leaves parish". BBC News. 2003-10-13. 
  4. ^ "Reality TV vicar returning home". BBC News. 2005-11-15. 
  5. ^ Bluck, photographs by Rob Tucker ; text by John (2011). Taranaki's cathedral : bringing it to birth. [New Plymouth, N.Z.]: Published for the Diocese of Waikato and Taranaki by Anglican Taonga Publications. pp. 46–55. ISBN 9780473188085. 
  6. ^ "Cathedral Consecration". Taranaki Daily News. 2010-03-08. 
  7. ^ "fundraising concert". Taranaki Daily News. 2012-07-24. 
  8. ^ Radio New Zealand, National (2013-06-25). "The Life of Carrie Allen - Radio Broadcast". Retrieved 7 January 2016. 
  9. ^ Jo, Moir. "Dean's daughter dies after three year battle". Taranaki Daily News. Fairfax Media. Retrieved 2016-01-07. 
  10. ^ Jo, Moir (2012-09-18). "Cathedral burial for girl". Fairmax Media. Taranaki Daily News. Retrieved 7 January 2016.