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Durham University

St John's College

Joseph Plumb

Joseph Plumb

Education and Training

Primary & Secondary Education

St. Cuthbert’s Primary School, Chester-le-Street, County Durham: 1976-1983

St. Leonard’s Hugh School, Durham City: 1983-1989

Higher Education

BA Hons (2:1) in Theology and Pastoral Ministry

Ushaw College, Durham (University of Durham): 1989-1995

-including chaplaincy in primary and secondary schools, (St. Robert’s High School, Washington and St. Cuthbert’s High School, Newcastle), voluntary placement in Sunderland Catholic Youth Centre, Newcastle General Hospital Oncology Unit.


Ongoing Formation Courses at Ushaw College and in Rome from 1995-2009.

Seminars and Training Days on Promotion of, Education in and Defence of Human Rights in the Apostolic Vicariate of Iquitos, Peru and at National Level with the National Human Rights Coordinating Body on:

Right to an Identity (right to education, healthcare, voting process), Domestic Violence (relationships training, importance of dialogue), Employment Rights & Abolition of Child Labour, Human Trafficking, Exploitation of the Amazon Rainforest-illegal logging, fishing and exploitation by oil companies, Rights of Indigenous People’s-respect for lifestyle and culture, beliefs, customs and traditions (tribal dress, dances, culinary customs, traditional homes and societal norms in indigenous tribal groupings-Cocama, Shipibo, Yagua, Bora, Wuitoto Morey, Cocamilla, Orejón, Maijuna, Shawi, Matses, etc… (2008-2010).

Five-day workshop in Piura, Perú on Conservation of the Amazon Rainforest and Investigating ternational Initiatives to Promote Development of Indigenous Jungle-Dwellers. (Organized by Nature & Culture International, San Diego, California-based NGO working in Mexico, Ecuador and Perú) April 2013

Seminar (four days) with Matthew Fox, OP on “Creation Theology” in Barranco, Lima, Peru-January 2nd-6th 2005.

Seminar (four days) with Diarmuid Murragh on “Chaos Theory and Feminist Theology” in Barranco, Lima, Perú-January 7th-11th 2006.

Seminar (two days) with Gustavo Gutierrez, OP, on “Lights and Shades in the Application of the Theology of Liberation in Latin America since 1990” January 4th-6th 2007 in Barranco, Lima, Perú.

Seminar (4 days) with Donal O’Leary on “Advancement of Theoloigy for the 21st Century” in Barranco, Lima, Perú-January 4th-8th 2008.

Masters Studies in Dogmatic Theology at the Pontifical & Civil Faculty of Theology, (Seminario Diocesano de Santo Toribio de Mongrevejo), Lima from 2006-2008.

Foreign & Commonwealth Office Training Course on Consular Assistance in Whitehall, London, 21st-26th October 2011. (Topics: Lost Passports, Dealing with Victims of Robberies & Assaults, Sickness & Death Overseas, UK Nationals in Prison Overseas, Human Trafficking & International Child Abduction, International Kidnapping, International Organized Crime.

British Embassy, Lima

Teamwork Guidance & Enneagram, April 2011

1-Day European Union workshop on the Dignity of Women, Prevention of Human Trafficking, April 2012

2-Day Workshop on Consular Assistance to Victims of Rape & Sexual Assault, March 2013.


Employment History

1995-1997: Assistant Priest at Our Blessed lady Immaculate, Blackhill, Consett

 Coordinator of Formation Programme for Parents & Young People

 Coordinator of Preparation Programme for Couples

 Coordinator of Youth Activities for Derwentside Ecumenical Partnership

 Chaplain to Shotley Bridge Hospital

 Chaplain to St.Bede’s High School, Lanchester

 Governor at St.Mary’s Primary School, Blackhill


1997-2000: Assistant Priest at St. Aidan’s, Ashington

 Member of Ecumenical Chaplaincy Team at Wansbeck General Hospital

 Chaplain to St. Benet Biscop High School

 Chaplain & Chair of Governors at St. Benedict’s Middle School, Ashington

 Governor at St. Aidan’s Primary School, Ashington

2000-2009: Parish Priest at Parish of San Pedro Pescador, Bellavista, Nanay, Iquitos, Perú

 -Teaching workshops for 125 rural animators on respect for cultural diversity and

 diverse belief-systems, Old Testament and New Testament themes, St.Paul’s letters &

 journeys, teaching on non-violence, varied tribal cosmo-visions and teaching on

 equality, respect for other beliefs and traditions, justice and peace, non-racism,

 socio-political awareness 

 -Teaching Theology in Diocesan Seminary (Scripture, Discipleship, Social Justice

 Teaching, World Religions, Ecumenism, Respect for Creation, Ecology.

 -Personal Tutor to 24 young students of 18yrs-35yrs of age, responsible for their

 personal, physical, emotional, moral and spiritual formation

 -Coordinator of Catechesis & Christian Formation Programme

 for young people from 5yrs of age to 18yrs of age

 -Developing Formation Programmes in Human Values for Animators of Rural

 communities along the River Amazon and it’s tributaries.

 -Chairman of Juventud Bellavista Football Club which gives sporting and

 employment opportunities to young people living in extreme poverty (in 2009 we

 brought a delegation of 14 young footballers from Iquitos to the North East UK

 for a cultural & sporting experience, visiting 12 schools)

 -Chaplain to Diocesan Human Rights/Justice & Peace Commision

January 2000-July 2013:

Projects Coordinator of “The Peru Mission” (Registered UK Charity 1145812) which brings groups of sixth-formers to Peru to work alongside local people in projects of social improvement in situations of extreme poverty

-building classrooms, medical posts, communal food kitchens

-artwork classes with Peruvian teenagers

-teaching English to children and young people

-sporting activities with Peruvian teenagers

These groups also travel into the Amazon jungle for 3 days to see jungle animals, visit indigenous tribes-people and encounter their beliefs, customs and lifestyle, staying in a jungle lodge and trekking through the jungle, canoeing on the River Amazon and meeting local people. 

I coordinate these trips, booking accommodation and transport, organizing water and diet, constructing risk assessments and security evaluations on behalf of the schools involved (St. John’s School & Sixth Form, Bishop Auckland and St. Leonard’s High School, Durham), buying materials for their building project, and enabling the young people to encounter their own gifts and talents in situations where they have to overcome physical and social difficulties and tremendous cultural diversity, language barrier and differences of socio-economic status.

January 2009-August 2011: Director of Languages School, Scientific University of Peru

 (Universidad Cientifica del Peru)

 Development of Languages Courses for Peruvians learning English, German, French & Portugese

 Development of Courses for English-speakers learning Spanish


August 2011-July 2013: Honorary British Consul in Iquitos, Loreto region, Perú.

Named Honorary British Consul in Iquitos, Loreto, Perú and establishment of Honorary British Consulate

-assistance to travellers, especially young back-packers

-advice on personal safety procedures, staying in touch with home via social media networks, (email, Facebook, Twitter, etc…)

-participation in multi-sectorial meetings to improve street-safety, prevent child exploitation, promote women’s rights and equality, promote tourism and development opportunities 

-crisis management; robberies and assaults, hospitalization, death overseas.

January 2013-July 2103: Specialist in International Cooperation, Nature & Culture International, Iquitos, Loreto.

 -Training of Field Experts in Respect for Local Culture & Beliefs. Lifestyle and Traditions

 -Translation of Monthly Reports on Environmental Conservation from Spanish-English

 -Defence of the Rainforest Environment, Animals, Population and Tree & Plant Species

 -Preparation of News Articles in English & Spanish on Projects to Preserve the Rainforest. 


Personal Statement:

My teaching experience and ability to work with young people comes from a variety of opportunities and experiences during my employment career as a Catholic priest working in two parishes in the North East of England and in the Amazon rainforest region of Peru and successively as Projects Development Director of a Charity working in the field of education and formation, as well as in my role as Director of a Languages Centre and Honorary British Consul in Iquitos, Peru.

I have developed formation and education programmes since 1995 and more specifically taught theology and respect for multi-cultural values from 2000 to the present day.

My principle enjoyment in life is seeing the human flourishing of all people, but especially young people, realizing and recognizing their gifts and talents, capabilities, strengths and weaknesses in order to reach their full potential.

I have a dynamic and engaging teaching style and exceptional interpersonal and communication skills. I am an active listener and a good team-player. I enjoy a collaborative style of leadership and teamwork, enabling others to use and enhance their skills. The community life of a school is very appealing to me as a working environment orientated towards learning and achievement.


I am keen to improve my effective classroom practice and update my knowledge of current teaching methods. I believe that I have an openness to learn and find the best techniques for helping schools to attain excellent academic results and ensure that their students achieve professional success.

My strengths include an ability to encourage and inspire an enjoyment of the study of theology and religious studies as a subject coupled with a love of English Literature, music, film, culture and the arts which I hope to be able to bring to any teaching post. I am eager to discover and employ new methodologies in a teaching role, to enhance and improve my own teaching style and attain excellent results for the school in which I am working.

I feel that I can offer skills and experience which may broaden the cultural awareness of a school community. I am a fluent or “neo-native” Spanish-speaker, have worked extensively in the fields of human rights defence and promotion, with indigenous ethnic groupings in the Amazon, have organized various school visits to Latin America for schools from the North East of England, have experience of crisis management and reactions to cultural diversity.

I have an ability to work under stress and to meet deadlines. I have an incisive and instinctive grasp of situations based on a wealth of human experience and can move easily within different social spheres. I would welcome the opportunity to work with young people as a teacher and form tutor and believe I could offer a great deal to any school which would be happy to accept me as a trainee-teacher or for teaching practice.

St John's College, Durham is a recognised College of Durham University and incorporates Cranmer Hall. Charity No. 1141701 Limited Company No. 113496 (England and Wales) VAT No. 334 6364 57.