I was born and raised in Darlington, attending Carmel RC College before studying at both undergraduate and postgraduate level at Northumbria University, Newcastle. My research is especially concerned with mysticism and mystical experience in both Catholic and Protestant groups in seventeenth century England. It focuses on examples of how mysticism encouraged conversation and collaboration across confessional boundaries in the period. My wider research interests include religious radicalism, nonconformity, enthusiasm and polemical controversies concerning religion in the seventeenth century.
I have lectured at several North East universities in recent years. In 2019-20 I was an Associate Lecturer in the Department of Theology and Religion at Durham University. In 2015-16 I was an Associate Lecturer at Northumbria University, before which I was also an Associate Tutor in 2014-15. In 2013-14 I was an Associate Lecturer at the University of Sunderland.
This website was originally started as a blog intended to discuss my PhD research into the Philadelphian Society, a Protestant group of mystical leanings who emerged in late seventeenth-century London. The Philadelphian leaders updated members of the group about mystical occurrences via a publication entitled 'Theosophical Transactions'.
The blog has evolved since its inception and now discusses mysticism and early modern religion more generally. Yet the aim of informing readers about mysticism ensures that the name is still loyal to the original intention the Philadelphians gave it over 300 years ago.