The Eastern Region

Meet the Team

Dave Friswell is the Learning & Development Coordinator for the Eastern region. He has a background in training both in church and higher education environments. He has extensive experience of working with churches in other parts of the world and remains involved with cross cultural exploration with ministers coming to the UK from abroad. He is keen to see churches with grow a heart for mission and to develop both in their buildings and out in the wider community. He spends his spare time in his garage restoring and tinkering with his old cars.

Contact Dave    07799 902570 



Ann Howlett-Foster is a Learning & Development Officer for the Eastern region, aligned to the Bedfordshire, Essex and Hertfordshire District. She loves to engage in creative and appreciative conversations with both individuals and groups to find ways forward.  Ann works part time and is also a freelance facilitator and graphic recorder.  When not working she enjoys singing and making silver / metal stuff. Ann's main areas of works are Positive Working Together, Mission Planning, Intergenerational work and Safeguarding Training.

Contact Ann    07799 900481



Gillian Thomas is a Learning & Development Officer for the Eastern region, aligned with the Lincolnshire District. Gill has worked for the statutory and charity sectors in various parts of England and her passions lie in social justice and theology in popular culture. Married to Rob and mum of Max, she lives in Lincolnshire where she is also a Reader in the Lincoln Diocese.  Gill's main areas of work are children, youth, families and intergenerational work; the Reconciliation and Mediation Pilot project and leading on pastoral work and pastoral visitor training.

Contact Gillian  |  |  07799 902581 



Michael Wadsworth is a Learning & Development Officer for the Eastern Region. He has a background in young adults ministry and training development. He carries a deep passion for teaching, biblical studies and theological reflection and particularly loves to help communities read the Bible with greater confidence and expectancy.  In his spare time he also tutors for King's School of Theology. He lives in Derby where he worships as part of a small, experimental church plant. Michael's main areas of work are helping to coordinate Bible Month on behalf of the Learning Network as well as supporting the work of Local Preachers and Worship Leaders.

Contact Michael  |  |  07791 036801


Nigel Pimlott is a Learning & Development Officer for the Eastern region, aligned with the Nottingham & Derby District. As a trainer, thinker, strategist and coach he has a passion for mission, innovation, creativity and helping people make a difference in the world. Nigel’s main areas of work are pioneer ministry, supporting new places for new people ministry, leadership development and church/circuit visioning.

Contact Nigel  |  07799 900468 



Jenna Thorne is a Digital Learning & Development Officer for the Eastern region, aligned with the East Anglia District.  Jenna has an extensive background in creative arts ministry, theatre and community work. Jenna works part time and is also Artistic/ Executive Director of therapeutic arts charity, Talitha Arts. Jenna's main areas of work are digital communications, engagement & mission; stewarding; and student ministry. 

Contact Jenna  |  02074 675190



Stuart Watkin is a Learning & Development Officer for the Eastern region, aligned with the Bedfordshire, Essex and Hertfordshire District and with responsibility for Equality, Diversity & Inclusion.  He has worked in education for two decades, in prison education, the Sixth Form College sector and secondary schools, and was Vice Principal of an Academy in London. He lives in London with his wife and dogs. Stuart's main areas of work are equality, diversity & inclusion; additional needs and chaplaincy.

Contact Stuart  | 07825 669586




If you want to see events outside our region, click on the black X next to the word 'tags' on the top of the calendar. 

Your Eastern Regional Learning Network:

Working across the five districts in the region, we are here to support your local church with your learning and development needs. We are now able to offer more training and resourcing online. This enables us to share with others beyond our regional boundaries giving greater opportunity to learn from others’ experiences, skills and knowledge.

We continue to offer local opportunities for people to gather to explore areas such as pioneering, children’s and youth work, evangelism, work with the economically marginalised and much more.

Get in Touch

 Contact any of the team to see how you can participate and find out more or email

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