New Provost Margi Campbell tunes in to Oban life

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Oban’s new provost of St John’s Cathedral is well-tuned to Argyll and the Isles.

Former music teacher and lifelong choir singer Margi Campbell takes up her new post in May and she will also be rector of St James’ Ardbrecknish and a gathered congregation that meets at Kilbrandon.

The Rev Campbell, whose organist husband James is taking early retirement to move with her, has visited the area on many occasions over the years and already ‘feels at home’.

Mrs Campbell is looking forward to encouraging and enjoying the music that plays a big part of the cathedral’s life, even though keeping busy with her new role means she will not be signing up to any of the town’s choirs or music groups just yet.

‘I’m looking forward to encouraging and enjoying the music and celebrating it as part of church and community life first,’ said the Rev Campbell, who used to teach the subject to primary school children.

And she added: ‘Music and liturgy have been at the heart of all my parish and diocesan ministry, exploring how we can be both missional and welcoming in our worship.’

The Rev Campbell, who grew up in Kent before moving to Somerset, was ordained 16 years ago and, until this spring, will keep up her role as rector of Backwell in the Diocese of Bath and Wells and as rural dean of Portishead.

Argyll and the Isles Bishop Kevin Pearson said Mrs Campbell was one of three ‘very strong candidates’ for the job. ‘We were unanimous that the Rev Margi was the right person to become our next provost,’ he said.

The Rev Campbell, who has two sons and whose sabbatical in 2016 first brought her to Argyll and Iona, said: ‘We’ve been drawn here, gently nudged over the years. We’ve spent a lot of time visiting Argyll and the Isles and just felt this was the place for us. We already feel at home.’

Mrs Campbell and her husband, whose son Tom will be on Mull soon filming eagles as part of his MA in wildlife film-making, had already bought a house in the area for their eventual retirement but they will be living in the rectory. Their other son Ben is a research physicist.

‘We look forward to meeting everyone and beginning a new stage of our pilgrimage of discovery. I come knowing that I have much to learn as I transfer all my experiences into the Scottish Episcopal Church, but do so with confidence because of the wonderfully warm welcome we have already felt from those we have met,’ she said.