Pastor John Townley


Senior Pastor Light and Life St Austell, Cornwall)

John had the privilege of being brought up in a Christian home on a dairy farm in North Yorkshire. He gave his life to the Lord when he was fourteen years old. John thoroughly enjoyed working as a farmer for 14 years before going to Emmanuel Bible College in 1991. In 1994 he, his late-wife Caroline, and their four young children moved to Cornwall to pastor the Helston FM church. They saw significant growth and began to implement God’s call to church planting.

Over the last 19 years John has witnessed God’s favour as numbers worshipping on Sunday mornings under the ‘Light and Life’ banner have grown from less than 50 to around 900. Churches have been planted in Penzance, Truro, Hayle, St Austell, Falmouth and Pool.

John, now married to Becky, moved from Helston to St Austell in 2009 in response to God’s call to plant there and establish a new region of Light and Life churches in East Cornwall.

In June 2012 John handed over the day-to-day running of St Austell to Pete Godfrey, a gifted and dedicated Assistant Pastor, married to Rosie. This enabled John to continue and increase his time working on the Free Methodist Church National Leadership Team alongside Rev. Andrew Gardner. His areas of responsibility are church planting and vision for the future of the FM movement. He is spear-heading plans for training centres in both the North and South West of the UK.

This also enabled him to start a mid-week meeting in Liskeard and a prayer group for Bodmin to prepare the way to plant there in the future. John’s ‘hands on’ involvement with the churches in West Cornwall continues including monthly L & L pastors’ get-togethers.

John has four now grown-up children; Grace is married to Liam and has two little girls, Daniel lives in Watford, Bethany is married to Dave and Lydia is married to James.

John enjoys walking, D.I.Y and football (watching rather than playing these days).

July 2013