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Combined Authority director takes up new role

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Former Cambridgeshire County councillor Paul Raynes who left politics for a £100,000 a role with Cambridgeshire and Peterborough Combined Authority (CAPCA) is the new director of operations and finance for the Diocese of East Anglia.

Mr Raynes played a crucial role at CAPCA stepping up to acting chief executive following the departure of Eileen Milner.

The CAPCA board issued a brief statement in May noting that Ms Milner’s responsibilities had temporarily been shifted to Mr Raynes.

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However, the same report added that “a settlement recommendation will be issued to the board shortly relating to the resignation of Paul Raynes”.

The Diocese of East Anglia has appointed Paul Raynes, as its new Director of Operations and Finance.

Mr Raynes, a former deputy chair of the SE Cambridgeshire Conservative Association, won the Soham North and Isleham division in 2017 but quit a year later to accept a role with CAPCA.

The East Anglian Diocese says that in his new role, Mr Raynes will be working to ensure the church’s resources are “used effectively to support its mission”.

Mr Raynes has previously worked at the Local Government Association, at the Treasury where he ran a Cabinet Minister’s office and at the Foreign Office, where he served as financial attaché at in the Paris Embassy.

The diocese says that outside of work, Mr Raynes is an experienced school governor and chairs the governing body at a large Catholic school.

His first degree is from Cambridge University, where his wife Sarah also studied. The couple have four children and are part of St Etheldreda’s parish in Ely.

Mr Raynes said: “Pope Francis has said that each one of us is a mission. I hope I can help to make sure that the resources of the church in East Anglia are used as effectively and efficiently as possible to support Bishop Alan and the individual parishes in proclaiming the Gospel.

“I am looking forward to meeting as many people as possible over the coming months to learn how the diocesan finance team can best serve our local mission.

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“This is also an important moment, with so many people facing financial challenges, for thinking about how we can make sure that the Church’s investments and property are used wisely and sustainably with an eye to environmental sustainability, in line with the teaching the Holy Father has set out in his encyclical Laudato Si.”

The operations and finance director was advertised earlier this year within a salary range of £73,000-£80,000.

On his Linked In profile – a website for professionals – Cllr Raynes describes himself as a “thought leader, influencer, and communicator in economic, education, localism, and welfare reform issues, with strong senior leadership experience across public and private sectors and broad experience of leading change.

“I have influenced policy innovation from Free Schools to City Deals and delivered real-world improvements from better exam results to buzzier libraries.

“I work equally well with Cabinet Ministers, frontline professionals, business leaders, journalists and policy wonks.”

On October Mr Raynes attended the annual Mass for the permanent deacons and their wives at St John the Baptist Cathedral in Norwich.

During this Mass, Bishop Alan Hopes conferred the ministry of Acolyte on Mr Raynes from St Etheldreda in Ely parish and admitted Jonathan Wright from the parish of Our Lady of the Assumption and the English Martyrs in Cambridge, Jonathan Callejo from the parish of the Cathedral of St John the Baptist and Edwin Mothis from the parish of Sacred Heart and St Oswald in Peterborough to Candidacy.

Candidacy is admission to the first stage of diaconal studies.

Mr Raynes’s conferral of Acolyte marks the final year of his studies for the diaconate.

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