Farewell With Flowers

by Gerry Lynch last modified 09 Apr, 2015 04:54 PM

Di Brisbane starts retirement after giving over 24 years' service to three successive Bishops of Salisbury

After more than 24 years serving three successive Bishops of Salisbury, Di Brisbane bade farewell to to working life in Holy Week as she begins a well earned retirement. 

Di’s cheerful voice and administrative competence have made the lives of priests and people across the Diocese easier and more cheerful for almost a whole generation. Di came into post in November 1990: Robert Runcie was Archbishop of Canterbury, Kylie Minogue was Britain’s biggest selling pop star and the Soviet Union was still a country. It was the very month when Tim Berners-Lee published the design spec for the World Wide Web. 

Over 100 people from across the Diocese and beyond, including six bishops, gathered at South Canonry for a farewell tea party on Passion Friday. 

Di said, “Initially, I went for three days as a Temp, and was asked to consider applying for the vacancy. 

“My first thought was ‘Psalms and sermons – don’t think so!’ But I needed a job, so I took it and stayed for over 24 years. Despite my comment on pslams, that was one of the most fascinating parts of the job. Bishop David Stancliffe chaired the Liturgical Advisory Commission when the new psalter for Common Worship was translated. It was amazing the difference the placing of a colon could make. 

“I’d particularly like to thank everyone who contributed to my enormously generous retirement present – it’s quite overwhelming. I’m still in Salisbury, so I’m sure continue ‘doing lunch’ with old friends.” 

Bishop Nicholas said, “Di has been wonderful, not just to Helen and me but to John and Jill Baker and David and Sarah Stancliffe. She was unflappable, encouraging, efficient, funny and a very good judge of people. There's not much she didn't know about the Diocese of Salisbury. Many will be reassured that her tact and immense discretion remain with her in retirement.” 

Bridget Trump, the Bishop of Salisbury’s Personal Assistant, worked closely with Di and said, “Di was always a most positive and helpful colleague and I’ll miss her around the office. I wish her well in retirement.” 

A full set of photos from Di’s farewell occasion can be found on Facebook at: https://www.facebook.com/media/set/?set=a.609005059201367.1073741913.347450288690180

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