A VICAR who took the reins of a town centre church more than 30 years ago has fond memories of his time serving in the borough following his retirement to Teesside this month.

Fr David Munby, originally from Newcastle, bid a fond farewell to his Royston home last week to spend his retirement with his family who live there.

The 68-year-old spent 32 years at St George’s Church, on York Street, where he helped feed the homeless, gave birth to the Exodus Project children’s charity, and ran a foodbank.

Fr David told the Chronicle: “Although I retired from the church around two years ago, I was involved with Destination Barnsley and other ventures before I left.

“I moved to Barnsley in 1988, where myself and wife Jill brought up three children who attended St Mary’s Primary and Kingstone School.

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“It was a huge change initially coming to Barnsley, I’ve seen a lot of change especially in the last ten years or so.

“The town has become much more multicultural which has been wonderful to see. I’m extremely proud of my time here.

“The people in my congregation were incredibly kind and really embraced the vision.

“I am still in regular contact and they will always be my ties to the town.”

Fr David and his wife moved to Teesside last week to retire, but intends to return to Barnsley in the future to see how things continue to change.

“I was really looking forward to seeing the new developments at the town centre completed.

“I know the council have been at the planning and construction for years, it’s just a shame I moved out of town before getting to see it.

“I will miss those who have been touched by St George’s Church. I have wonderful memories there and will miss it dearly.”