John Foskett

Canon John Foskett, a pioneer in clinical pastoral education and chaplain at the Maudsley Hospital for many years, has died at the age of 78.

John was a long-time supporter of Being Alongside/APCMH, and wrote two books: Meaning in Madness (1984), about mental health, religion and chaplaincy, and Helping the Helpers (1988), with David Lyall, about supervision for pastoral counsellors.

An obituary written by John’s son Tim has been published by The Guardian in its Other Lives section.

A memorial service will be held at Southwark Cathedral at 2pm on 14th November 2017. All who knew John and valued his work are warmly encouraged to attend.

An appreciation will appear in the next issue of our magazine.


Pam Freeman adds her own tribute to John Foskett:

I wish to pay tribute to Rev John Foskett who was the chaplain at the Bethlem Royal Hospital in Beckenham from 1976 to 1994. He was also an honorary Canon at Southwark Cathedral from 1988 to 1994. He was a really good friend to Being Alongside. He spoke many times on our behalf at meetings held over the years.

I met him in the eighties when I went on a course for pastoral counselling at the Arts Centre in Croydon. We learnt a great deal and both John and Mary were very kind and understanding concerning the problems that people often experienced. They enabled those who took part in the course to gain in Confidence when working in voluntary organisations and the church and Being Alongside.

He was always available for consultation and I can remember visiting him at the hospital on more than one occasion. He also worked at the well known Maudsley Hospital in Denmark Hill and was highly thought of by staff and patients alike.

He wrote a book sharing his experiences of those who suffered mental illness which was a great help to many.

I wish to say that we were very fortunate in APCMH to have the support and help which John gave over the years.

May he rest in peace.