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Mark Murphy

Research Proposal: The Direction of Desire: How can a Lacanian and Jaunist Approach to Spiritual Direction Highlight and Demonstrate the Ethical Role of Desire in the Modern Context of Spiritual Direction? 

Supervisor: Prof Peter Tyler


I studied Theology at St Mary’s University Twickenham, both as an undergraduate and postgraduate student.

After completing my studies I worked as a Retreat Group Leader for SPEC at All Saints Pastoral Centre in St Albans. I then went on to complete a PGCE in order to teach Philosophy and Theology at St Francis Xavier College in South London.

I am currently in my final year of my PhD which focuses on the relationship between Psychoanalysis and Spiritual Direction. This is part of my wider interest in the field of Mystical Theology, Spirituality and Continental philosophy.

Dermot Tredget Dermot-Tredget

Research Proposal: The Concept of Monastic Leisure in Early Christian Monasticism and its application to a renewed understanding of the meaning and practice of leisure in the world of work and wider contemporary society. 

Supervisor: Prof Peter Tyler


Ordained to the Roman Catholic priesthood in 1987 Fr Dermot Tredget is a priest of the Archdiocese of Cardiff.

Before priestly formation at St Benet's Hall, Oxford and then Heythrop College he worked in the Hotel and Catering industry first as a chef and then as a lecturer in Food and Beverage Management at the University of Surrey.He has a MBA from the University of Bath (1983) and an MA from the GTU Berkeley, California in Applied Theology (1998).

Since 2000 his pastoral ministry has focused on business ethics and  the spirituality of work especially in the areas of leadership and decision making and the way these impact on people in senior management. He has held a number of part-time appointments in Higher Education including Plater College Oxford, Cranfield Business School and the Catholic University of the Sacred Heart in Italy.

Tessa Hollandtessa-holland

Research proposal: The apophatic imperative of desire: the language of abyss and metaphors of intimacy in St John of the Cross

Supervisor: Prof Peter Tyler 


I am an Anglican priest licensed in the Diocese of Chichester, married with three adult daughters.

We have lived in Sussex for almost 25 years and our home has been affiliated to the Quiet Garden Trust since 1999. Having been a stay at home mum since 1987, I was ordained in 2003 and for the last 10 years have exercised a contemplative ministry of prayer, welcome, study and creativity.

The spirituality of John of the Cross has been instrumental in this vocation and my intention in my research project is to explore connections between John's theology of desire and contemporary spiritual formation. 

vincent-manningVincent Manning

Research proposal:  What does it mean when we say that the Body of Christ is living with HIV in the UK today? 

Supervisors: Prof Peter Tyler & Dr Lynne Scholefield. 


Vincent is an Irish immigrant with a background in youth and social work, that started in the 1980s in the South Bronx where he managed ‘My Brothers’ Place’ a residential unit for homeless young men.

Later specialising in work with young people in the British care system, and work within the homelessness and prison sectors. He spent a year as leader of the Camas community youth centre for the Iona Community (Scotland).

He was the sexual health adviser with responsibility for looked after young people in South London. An activist within Christian HIV ministry since the late 1980s Vincent is current Chair of Catholics for AIDS Prevention and Support, the only UK Christian charity with a focus on pastoral needs of people living with and affected by HIV in England, Wales and Ireland.He is a member of ‘The Community of the Passion’ and most of his time is spent in pastoral ministry with and for people living with HIV.

He lives in Stockwell, South London (also known as Shockwell, Shotwell or North Clapham, depending on experience) where he is involved in community activism. Research interests include Practical and Pastoral Theology; Christian faith, HIV and Public Health; Liberation Theologies; & Sexuality and gender. He is passionate about making the Gospel relevant especially for those at the margins of society.    

sue-ballSue Bull

Research proposal: What does the development of the mental health ministry at St Barnabas tell us about the ongoing relationship between Christian pastoral care and mental health.

Supervisors: Prof Peter Tyler & Dr Lynne Scholefield. 


I am employed by the NHS as a chaplain and also chair a small local charity - Love Me Love My Mind - which seeks to break down stigma about mental health issues.  In 2017 we celebrated the 10th anniversary festival of Epsom Mental Health Week.

I became a deacon in the Church of England in June 1998 and a priest the following year.  Since then I have gained diplomas in pastoral counselling and spiritual direction and an MA in Supervisory Practice.  Undertaking a 30 day Ignatian retreat in Dublin was a healing, transformative process.

I have had published a simple guide through the journey of Alzheimer's disease, written in response to my mother's experience.

In my spare time I enjoy singing, the countryside, reading in front of a crackling fire, and the company of two dogs who really are gifts from God!  I am a mixture of a contemplative and someone who spends much of life in many diverse situations.