St Peter’s People

The Rector of St Peter’s is Rev Jim Benton-Evans. Jim has been Rector of St Peter’s (and of St Andrew’s, Innerleithen) since 1 May 2012. He was previously Priest-in-Charge of five churches in North Cornwall centred around the small town of Camelford. Before becoming a minister, Jim worked as a civil servant and as a primary school teacher. Jim is married to Claire and they have three teenage children.

Jim is particularly interested in how the church can better engage with her community and how it can welcome people of all ages and backgrounds. He is passionate about social justice, music, especially live acoustic music, and Plymouth Argyle FC. In his spare time, Jim plays ukulele in a local band, watches Ayr United and does accidental damage to Tweeddale golf courses.

Jim is assisted by Rev Colin Chaplin and Rev Charles Aitchison.Ministry TeamColin trained as a non-stipendiary priest in the diocese of Edinburgh from 1974-1977, after ordination becoming part of a team ministry to the congregations of St. James the Less, Penicuik and St Mungo’s, West Linton until 1989. During an interregnum he had his first experience of regular ministry at St. Peters Peebles and St Andrews Innerleithen as Priest-in-Charge from 1989-1990. Having served other congregations both before and after his retirement, Colin returned to St Peter’s and St Andrew’s and has ministered here since 2000, apart from a break of a year as Priest-in-Charge of St Peter’s, Galashiels. Colin is married to Maureen and they have two children, four grandchildren and a great granddaughter. Colin finds his relaxation in gardening and wood turning, and has recently developed an interest in family history.

Charles was baptised and brought up at St James the Less, Penicuik, where he was a chorister from the age of five. He trained as a teacher at Durham University, then spent many years working as a teacher and head teacher in County Durham. He later became Head of St James’ Primary School in Penicuik, where he stayed until his retirement in 1995. In 1989 Charles was licensed as a Lay Reader; in 1993 he was ordained Deacon and served at St Andrew’s Innerleithen. In 1998 Charles was ordained Priest, and now rejoices in having served both St Peter’s Peebles and St Andrew’s Innerleithen for so many years. Charles was married to his late wife, Margaret, for nearly 45 years. They have three grown-up children and three grandchildren.

Lay Worship Leaders
St Peter’s is blessed with a number of lay worship leaders, who have been licensed by the Bishop of Edinburgh to lead and support our worship:

  • Claire Benton-Evans, Lay Worship Leader and Mission and Outreach Co-ordinator 
  • Emma Herd, Lay Worship Leader and Sunday School Co-ordinator 
  • Graeme Herd, Lay Worship Leader 
  • Caroline Skea, Lay Worship Leader and People’s Warden 
  • Mary Wight, Lay Worship Leader

A vestry is the elected church council who oversee the running of the church and make decisions on behalf of the congregation. These can range from organising fundraising and activities and managing finances to caring for property and planning for the future. Under charity law, the members of the Vestry are the Trustees of the church.

The Vestry at St Peter’s Church includes the following office bearers:

  • Francis Mordaunt (Secretary) 
  • Nathaniel Buckingham (Treasurer and Rector’s Warden) 
  • Caroline Skea (People’s Warden and Lay Representative to Synod)