PETERSFIELD is rising through the Salvation Army ranks.
Earlier this month corps officer Captain Linda Read left for a new role in Tenby in Wales – and stepping into her shoes is Major Mike Harris.
Although he was born in Cornwall, you will struggle to detect a west country accent in the Salvation Army’s new officer at Petersfield – he has spent half of his life working for the Salvation Army in Yorkshire.
Major Harris was commissioned as a Salvation Army officer in 1990.
And apart from the first four years when he was stationed at Ashford in Kent, he has spent the past 26 years in Yorkshire – roughly half of his entire life – firstly in North Yorkshire at Malton and then in West Yorkshire at Batley in Leeds and, most recently, in Shipley, on the northern edge of Bradford.
Each of these appointments has been different, offering both challenges and opportunities.
In taking up the appointment as the corps officer at the Swan Street HQ of the town’s corps, the first challenge is likely to be getting to know the people while retaining a safe social distance.
A keen photographer and a less keen cyclist, Mike says the relatively flat roads around town might just persuade him into the saddle.
Mike has two adult children, both of whom are teachers and, earlier this year, he became a proud grand-dad.
Despite the difficulties posed by the current circumstances, Mike is looking forward to working with the people of Petersfield.
Petersfield Salvation Army Corps Sergeant Major Steve Field said: “We are looking forward to working alongside Major Mike in continuing the work and worship of the Salvation Army in Petersfield, and finding new ways of reaching out to those in need in these different times.”
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