The next vicar of Burley Parish Church has been announced.

The Reverend Dr Alastair Kirk, currently serving as Anglican Chaplain at the University of Warwick and Diocesan Interfaith Adviser for the Diocese of Coventry, has been appointed as Vicar of St Mary’s Parish Church, Burley-in-Wharfedale.

The Institution and Induction service will take place at St Mary’s on Thursday, September 4.

Alastair grew up in Leamington Spa and after leaving school spent a gap year working in northern Israel. He then studied geography in Durham and continued on to study for a PhD looking at issues of “desertification” in the eastern deserts of Jordan.

After completing his studies he worked for Save the Children in northern Iraq for three years, undertaking research used to advocate for change in the sanctions regime.

Alastair continued working for the organisation for a further year in northern Sri Lanka before returning to the UK. He married Sara in 2003 and embarked on theological studies in Cambridge. In 2007 he was ordained Deacon in Bradford Cathedral and served his training curacy in Tong and Holme Wood, a parish on the south side of Bradford.

For the last four years, Alastair has been working in an ecumenical and Inter-Faith team at the University of Warwick. He has a love of classical music, enjoys singing in a local choir, is a keen photographer and when a busy life schedule permits, enjoys both tennis and golf. Alastair and Sara have three boys, Barnaby, eight, Benji, six, and two-year-old Charlie.