Andrew Tatham, our Rural Dean, is married to Margaret, and they have two children, Hugh and Alice, both of whom are teachers. Margaret was a teacher of deaf children and latterly of children with a wider range of special needs.
Following a degree in Geography at the University of Durham, Andrew worked for two years as a cartographic editor with George Philip Ltd. moving to King’s College London, as Geography Librarian and Map Curator in 1973. While at King’s, he completed a Diploma in Archives Management and obtained his PhD, for a thesis on the cartography of the Kattegat in the Napoleonic period. Additionally, he taught cartography and history of cartography, both as Yr 1 compulsory courses and as Yr2/3 options, and also worked in the College Archives and co-ordinated and designed exhibitions of the College’s work for Industrial Leaders’ days, Graduation days, etc.
In 1992, Andrew was appointed Keeper at the Royal Geographical Society, where he was responsible for the Information Resources Division, including the world famous Map Room, and its assets - c.2million items with unique and very rare published and unpublished works from c.1484 to the present. He played a major role in planning a £6.4m project to make this internationally important archive more widely accessible and socially inclusive through new-build and refurbished facilities, through Internet-accessible catalogues, and through educational products and programmes, which is now being implemented.
Having trained on the Southwark Ordination Course, Andrew was ordained in 1992. He became Assistant Curate (NSM), in the parish of Headley-with-Boxhill, in the Guildford Diocese. This is a small, semi-rural parish (Pop.2400; ER.c.100), with high proportion of retired people. There are two separate communities in the parish, plus the Joint Service Medical Rehabilitation Centre at Headley Court, with a church in each. In 1999, Andrew also became Rural Dean of the Chapter in the Diocese of Guildford for all in non-stipendiary ministries in 1999. By 2002, when Andrew was appointed to his present post as Team Vicar in the Ilminster & District Team, the number of NSMs in Guildford diocese had grown to one hundred, or one-third of all clergy in the diocese. The Chapter has an important focus on helping clergy support and value Christians at their workplaces and understand the pressures faced. It also tries to affirm people in their workplace and help the understanding of their part in God’s creative work as seven whole days, not one in seven.
Andrew has published in a number of areas including the following: Local History - Population change in Tandridge; Bishop Blomfield and King’s College London; History of Cartography - German Military Mapping in World War 2; Charting the Kattegat in the Napoleonic Era; Map Curatorship - Moving a map library; Unlocking the Archives; Tactile Mapping - Tactile map design; cataloguing tactile maps; appropriate technology in tactile map production; standardisation; Christians at Work - Resources for parishes. His interest in tactile mapping led to him being elected Chairman of the ICA Commission on Maps and Graphics for Blind and Visually Impaired People (1995-2003), while at national level he has served as President (1998-2000) of the British Cartographic Society. Before training for ordination, Andrew had been County Secretary of the Scout Association, and a leader in a local Scout Group.
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The Rectory, Broadway, Ilminster, Somerset, TA19 9RE, 01460 52559
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