The Reverend Richard Coles is a Church of England priest in the quintessentially English village of Finedon in Northamptonshire, where two of his ancestors were Vicars in the 17th Century. However, in complete contrast, more than a quarter of a century ago Richard was the instrumentalist half of pop band The Communards, together with Jimmy Somerville.
In his session Richard Coles described his latest adventure as a dancer, but also revealed, with great humour and humanity, the more serious aspects of his life – a story that is as real as it is unlikely, where the euphoria and mayhem of being a pop star the 80s led to his present circumstances as Church of England priest, radio broadcaster and television show panelist.
His latest book, Bringing in the Sheaves picks up where his earlier volume Fathomless Riches closes with his ordination as a priest. Richard has a delightfully enquiring mind but with an eye finely tuned to absurdity, so his talks are always moving, thought provoking, and entertaining in equal order.
Richard frequently appears on radio and television, as well as in newspapers. He is probably best known as the regular host of BBC Radio 4’s Saturday Live programme, and also appears regularly on Newsnight and TV panel shows such as QI and Have I Got News For You, where his quick and inventive verbal humour is always to the fore. When the motivation is more spiritual, Richard has featured on BBC TV’s Songs of Praise specials and as the guest on Pause for Thought on BBC Radio 2.