The Team

Steve Whyatt
Director

Steve set up GenR8 with John Hardwick over 10 years ago. Previously he worked for Scripture Union in the Cambs area as a field staff member specialising in schools, and as a Baptist Church Youth Worker.  Married to Rachel they have four children Megan, Ellen, Millie and Alfie and live in Cottenham and attend the local Baptist church. Click here for Steve’s latest prayer/newsletter.

 JohJohnn Hardwick
Co-Founder, Scriptwriter and RE Days leader

John is supported by Children World Wide & Counties and brings his unique talent to a variety of different settings around the country as well as locally. John is an internationally known children’s song writer and author. John is married to Rachel and has two children, Chloe and Ben. John and the family live in Histon and attend the local Baptist Church. Visit John’s website.

 Julia Stone
Administration and Bookings Coordinator

Married to Leon with 2 teenage boys,  Julia has volunteered with GenR8 since 2009. She has been amazed and privileged to find herself part of a schools team enjoying it so much!  Since 2011 she has been the booking coordinator for the team.  “It is a real privilege to now be taking on the role of Administrator for GenR8 and I am very excited about a new opportunity to work for God in this way”.

 Debbie Jackman
Operations Manager

Debbie has known GenR8 from early days when her sons were at primary school and has enjoyed watching it grow from small beginnings. She lives in Willingham with her husband Andy and youngest son and is involved with CAPMoney and Sunday Club at the local Baptist Church.She is very excited to be a part of furthering the ministry of GenR8 in local schools & churches and beyond!

 Liz Currie
Inspire Prayer Spaces

Liz’s background is in teaching and voluntary youth work. Most recently Liz was Chaplain in a local school where she partnered with GenR8 and Ely Diocese in developing Inspire Prayer Spaces. She now works for GenR8, writing, coordinating and delivering prayer spaces to a growing number of Primary schools. Liz and her husband attend New Life Church, Histon and they have 2 children at University.

 Helen Tobiss
Personal Assistant to Director

A mum of 3 Helen is the Royston teams tour bus driver and can cope with almost anything – except when her husband disappears with the keys locking all the GenR8 props in the car! Her Devonshire accent is a real asset in sketches although she still has problems learning her lines, even when the only line is “shh, don’t tell ‘em”. Helen also volunteers as a PA to the GenR8 director, a job she shares with Kathryn.

Kathryn Gee
Personal Assistant to Director

Kathryn is married to Simon has 2 children and has been involved in children’s ministry at Melbourn Baptist for many years. She returned to GenR8 in 2009 after several years’ absence. She has an extensive supply of props and dressing up clothes, courtesy of her children and particularly enjoys being part of the fantastic GenR8 team. Kathryn, with Helen, also volunteers as a PA to the GenR8 director.

Amy Robinson
Script Writer

Amy’s first tour with GenR8 was in 2008, since when she has moved from Cambridge to Suffolk, which doesn’t seem to have made much difference to her level of involvement! She is a freelance writer and storyteller and seems to have landed in charge of the children’s work at the church where her husband is Rector – now I wonder how that happened?! She has two children, Abigail and Jeremy.

Rebecca Wilson
Bookings Co-ordinator – North Team

GenR8 Assemblies Team

Gillian Overitt. Sawston

Gillian lives in Sawston with her husband Andy. She has three grown-up children and three grandchildren. Gillian enjoys writing for children, her first book was published in 2012. She is excited to be involved in GenR8 and the opportunity to take the Christian message to children in such a fun way. As well as being a valuable team member, Gillian also volunteers as a support worker encouraging churches to support the work of GenR8.

Carol Thorndike. St Ives

Carol is married to Bob and they have 3 children. 11 years ago they established a charity working to help local disadvantaged adults and children. Part of this work involves organising and taking children away on holiday where they will encounter new things, including experiencing God’s love for them. GenR8 is another way local children hear of His love, and Carol is excited and privileged to be part of this work.

Jane Farewell. Cambridge

Jane is a wife and mother of 3 grown sons. All four of her ‘boys’ are Canadian. When possible she enjoys canoeing in the wilderness, otherwise it’s on the Cam. When not out with the GenR8 team Jane loves gardening, cooking and DIY, but not all at the same time!

David Newton. Cottenham

David is a house husband, an ICT Teaching Assistant in a Primary School, and a member of Cottenham Baptist Church. In his early days in GenR8 he discovered his alter ego in the form of Gordon the puppet. In his spare time he enjoys almost anything which is outdoors and away from computers and phones!

Dianne Conway. Sawston

A key organiser within the GenR8 set up, Dianne is a calming influence on any GenR8 team she is part of. As an ex teacher Dianne is in a good position to offer insight and advice in the realm of school. She also knows everybody in the Sawston area!

Myra Gaunt. Haddenham

Our Scottish tiger! Myra has grown in confidence enormously over the past couple of years and is a real asset to GenR8 as well as the Ely based Light & Life team. Myra throws herself into most roles (the trouble is she can’t get out!) and is an enthusiastic and key team member. She would be outstanding, but we can’t  understand a word of her strange dialect!

Jan Newton. Linton

Jan has seen what teams do from the “other side” as she is a Supply Teacher. Having seen the enjoyment and excitement of children (and staff) when GenR8 appear, the opportunity to get involved was too good to miss! Jan is married to Mark and they have two children. When not teaching, she enjoys cooking and gardening and various types of music.

Jenny Vaughan Girton

As Jenny approached retirement she wondered what new experiences God would lead her into. One answer was GenR8! Jenny joined the team in October 2012, and feels privileged to be able to share God’s wonderful message with children and adults. Enjoyment is a key part of GenR8 and she says “whatever your age or ability there is a place for everyone.” Jenny has many other interests which include bird watching and keeping a very large garden under control!

Lucinda Sparrow. Cambridge

Lucinda joined GenR8 in 2011 and is very excited about getting back into performing. She has had a lot of fun visiting various schools with GenR8, getting to know the back roads between Cambridgeshire villages and discovering interesting places to have lunch!

Mandy Jeffery. Ickleton

Nicknamed ‘The Little Actress’ at home, Mandy made a shaky start when, aged 6, she refused to play her recorder at the local music festival. Dancing proved more successful and she unwittingly performed her first solo in a Dancing School show being the only person to have got changed in time for the next item. She is now regularly to be found dressing up and making an exhibition of herself whenever and wherever possible and if it’s for God, even better!

Lesley van der Walle. Bottisham

Lesley joined GenR8 in 2013 following a move to Cambridge, with her husband and two children, from Lanarkshire, Scotland. Lesley is a member of RE:NEW, as small ecumenical church (with a Baptist background) which meets in Bottisham Primary School. She loves being part of a GenR8 team – preparing, praying together and sharing a common heart to bring the Christian message to primary school children.

Gavin Howard. Cambridge

Gavin has worked with children for nearly twenty years, firstly as a volunteer children’s worker in camps in the U.S.A. and Britain and latterly as a class teacher for years 3 and 4.  He is taking a break from teaching and loves having the opportunity to share the Gospel with many who might not otherwise hear it.  He lives in Cambridge with his wife Lu, two children and dog Charlie.

Nicola Grieves. Barrow, Bury St Edmunds

Nicola joined GenR8 in 2008 and is the children’s and family worker at All Saints Church, Milton. As well as looking after a husband and two dogs Nicola finds time to be an XcellR8 team member and Scripture Union holiday leader….as a side line Nicola has recently completed  her BA in ‘Children and Family Work and Practical Theology’ at Ridley Hall Cambridge. Congratulations!

Alison Slater. Coton

Alison Slater joined GenR8 in 2010 although being part of GenR8 was something Alison considered for a number of years previous to this. Alison has lived in or around Cambridge all her life. She has three fantastic children all of whom have now left home. Alison loves talking to children and adults about God.

Janeane Hails. Royston

Janeane is a mum of three young children. She remembered one school assembly that spoke loads to her and wanted to join GenR8 because of this and she likes drama! She is a member of Trinity Life Church in Royston.

Wendy Bell. Cambridge

Wendy first heard of GenR8 through her church.  Then when a friend who is involved with GenR8 also talked to her, Wendy started to feel that the Lord was possibly telling her that he would like her to become involved with the drama side of GenR8, so here she is!

Rachel Rogers. Cambridge

Rachel joined GenR8 in 2011 and is an increasingly part-time primary school teacher. Rachel is married to Will and they have three children. Rachel likes singing and swimming, but not at the same time!

Jane Askew. Royston

Jane has been part of GenR8 since 2011. She joins the Royston team whenever she can find the time as she is busy with a number of other voluntary roles within church and YWAM. Jane brings a great deal of enthusiasm, joy, wisdom and prayer to GenR8.

Zena Yates. Saffron Walden

Zena lives in Saffron Walden and joined GenR8 in 2014. Zena enjoys being part of the GenR8 team ‘more than she could ever have imagined’. As an osteopath Zena quickly found herself called upon to offer advice and hands on treatment for other GenR8 members’ aches and pains!

Petal White. Swavesey

Petal re-joined GenR8 in 2010 after training at All Nations Christian College on the one year Arts Pathway course. Petal thoroughly enjoys her involvement with GenR8, describing GenR8 as a ‘wonderful set of people to work with’. She finds a joy communicating such profound messages from the bible through the channel of acting, puppetry and song while sharing about Jesus.

Gemma Harvey. Cambourne

Gemma joined GenR8 in 2015 and has found it a world away from being a healthcare scientist at Addenbrooke’s hospital! Gemma is working hard at keeping a straight face in presentations as it is so enjoyable!

Lynn Hawkins. Burwell

Lynn joined GenR8 in 2015, bringing much enthusiasm to the team. She has experience in youth and children’s work, as well as amateur dramatics. She currently works as a TA, alongside her role with GenR8.

Mike Askew. Royston

Mike joined the Royston GenR8 team in 2014, joining his wife Jane. He had led church youth groups for many years and is now working with YWAM. He very much enjoys visiting schools and especially likes the interaction with the children in assemblies.

Bev Thomas. Longstanton

After living in the North West for 26 years Bev & her husband Andy moved to Longstanton in 2015. Their two children have flown the nest, one now in Reading and the other in Siberia.  A keen cyclist and gardener Bev is acclimatising to life in the East of England!  As a member of Willingham Baptist Church she helps with the youth group and promotes overseas mission. Previously a Teaching assistant she is looking forward to being ‘back in school’ and is excited about working with the GenR8 Assemblies team.

Daniel Beckett. Godmanchester

Daniel joined GenR8 in 2011 and is the youth pastor at Godmanchester Baptist Church. As well as being a full time dad and husband Daniel loves taking his dog for walks. Daniel says that being able to go into schools and do assemblies is great fun and a real privilege.

Alan Winfield. Swavesey

Alan, a retired teacher, took part in his first GenR8 tour in Christmas 2011 having seen GenR8 in action and feeling that he had something to offer. Alan maintains his teaching skills through voluntary teaching in the developing world, most recently in Kenya and Albania, and also is  a trustee and volunteer at Camtrust. He has taken part in amateur musicals since he was 22 and derives great joy in using this experience in God’s service. Alan attends Arbury Community Church in Cambridge.

Sarah Thorne. Linton

Sarah has recently returned to GenR8 in a ‘job share’ role with the South team. Always enthusiastic and smiling, Sarah is a great ambassador for all that we do.

Lawrence Powell. Linton

Lawrence has been part of GenR8 since his neighbour and GenR8 team member Jan knocked on his door in 2009! Thankfully for us he didn’t put his house on the market. Lawrence brings a great sense of humour and charisma to the South team.

Susan Kenyon. Papworth

Susan made her GenR8 ‘debut’ in the Christmas 2012 tour. She described her experience of being in the team as, “I’m having a great time and can’t stop raving about it!” Susan remembers that her first ever performance was at the age of 3 in playgroup, singing a solo of “I’m a little teapot”. She still can’t remember the words!

Josie McCormack. Royston

Josie joined GenR8 in 2012, another from a long list of team members coming from the Royston area. Josie stepped back from GenR8 in early 2014, some excuse about the birth of her son Daniel!

Bridget Hickish. Ely

Bridget is married to James and has 3 children. She is a church worship leader and curate’s wife at the weekend and otherwise works as a publisher. What Bridget enjoys most about being involved with GenR8 is being able to use her extensive range of squeaky voices for which there would otherwise be no other application in grown-up life.

Paulina Scott ‘ Lady P’. Cambridge

Larger than life Paulina brings lots of fun wherever she goes! Paulina is a great addition to the GenR8 team, except when near  wildlife as she screams and generally causes havoc!

David Casey. Warboys

David has had a long term association with schools and education, from Schools Mission Weeks with SU in the 1980s, through to secular international safety education since 1990. ‘Schools work is never dull, meeting some really great people and being welcome to visit schools to share something of my life and faith has always been a privilege never to be taken for granted.’

Anand Pillai. Sawston

Anand is married to Vijaya and is an Ambulance Care Assistant.  He attends St Andrew’s Church Stapleford, bell ringing regularly, serving Communion and teaching in Sunday School where he enjoys helping the children learn about the Christian Message.  He is also involved with the Vellore Link with Ely Diocese.

David Walters. St Ives

 

Laura Andrews.

Inspire Prayer Space Team

Lynn Murdoch. Cambridge

Lynn joined GenR8 in 2016 as a Trustee and volunteers with Inspire Prayer Spaces. She recently spent 6 years living in Romania running a national ministry to train and equip children’s workers in churches to bring Christianity to children in clubs and camps, and is delighted to now be involved with GenR8 at this stage of her life.

Ruth Barry

Becky Campbell. Linton

Becky is married to Errol and has two children. She works as a Teaching and ICT assistant at Great Chesterford Primary Academy and worships at C3 in Cambridge. She loves reading, eating out and spending quality time with people. She is very passionate about Prayerspaces in schools and connecting with her local community.

Janet King

After a long career in primary schools, which included watching quite a few Genr8 assemblies, Janet wanted to continue working with children. An Inspire training day back in 2013 showed her how to combine this desire with her passion for colour and fairy lights! She also works in schools abroad through SVN and Mission Direct and is a member of Bethel Baptist Church, Swavesey.

It’s Your Move Team

Paul Joel. Willingham

Paul first joined the It’s Your Move team in 2007 and loves being part of something so worthwhile.  He is married to Fiona and has two grown up children.  He is the Minister of Willingham Baptist Church and in his spare time enjoys walking,  preferably up a mountain … but struggles to find any near Cambridge!

Andrew Staplehurst. Milton

Andrew loves sports, the outdoors, and spending time with friends. His first memory of GenR8 is when they led an assembly at his primary school. Since joining the xcellr8 young team in 2010, the IYM Team in 2011, and spending his GAP year with GenR8 in 2013-14, Steve hasn’t been able to get rid of him!

Cool Choices Team

Jackie Smith

Jackie is an ex headteacher who believed God was calling her to go to schools and do Christian presentations, which she has been doing under the name of Light and Life in and around Ely for 17 years. She joined GenR8 at its inception in 2001 and still loves being on team (even with Steve!) where she is able to release her inner child!

Also Assemblies

Pete Smith

Peter has been married to Jackie for 43 years and they still enjoy working together. He is a retired headteacher and, as well as helping to write some of GenR8’s material, has joined the team since retiring. Peter enjoys being able to share the gospel message with children, whom he sees as crucial to the future of the church.

Also Assemblies

Lynn Murdoch. Cambridge

Also Inspire Prayer Spaces and Trustee

 

xcellr8 Team

Caroline North – Team Leader

Caroline joined GenR8 in 2003. She joined thinking it was a serious ministry where laughing was forbidden especially during the actual assemblies, but soon found that the content of most of the presentations has her rolling in tears (of joy) Alongside husband Tim, Caroline heads up our xcellr8 residential weekend and is part of our all-age service team.

Tim North –Team Leader

Married to Caroline and living in Haslingfield with their two teenage daugthers he is a member of Barnwell Baptist Church and was once described on local radio as ‘Cambridge’s answer to Handy Andy! Alongside Caroline, Tim heads up our xcellr8 residential weekend and is part of our all-age service team.

Core Team

Dickon Reed

Andrew Staplehurst

Susan Meah

Eliane Hamaia – Bookings

Steve Whyatt

Alison Brock-Head caterer

Main Team

Barbara Ashton

Mark Ashton

Ruth Barry

Rowan Braam

Callum Dickerson

Heather Dickerson

Ann Ding

Nicola Grieves

Lynn Hawkins

Paul Johnson

Alice Marsh

Natalie Palmer

Jenny Reed

Greg Reid

Trudy Reid

Erica Scott

Jonny Staplehurst

Julia Stone

Darren White

Millie Whyatt

Ellen Whyatt

Grey Wu

Julia Au

Becky Dear

Young Team

Alice Bates

Lara Hagger

Sarah Hamaia

Adam May

Bradley McMahon

Rachel Owen

Ben Rowland

Daniel Rowland

Emily Staplehurst

Daniel Stone

Alfie Whyatt

Sophie Wilkinson

Olivia Durrant

Beth Wilson

Felix Osbourne

Abbie Phillips

Rebecca Morgan

 

 

PREVIOUS GENR8 TEAM MEMBERS

Join the team?

Are you passionate for children to have the opportunity to hear about and learn from the Christian faith? We are and are always on the look out for people who share our vision! Find out more about getting involved in our Assembly Presentation, Inspire and Cool Choices teams contact Steve Whyatt

Bookings Co-ordinator needed!

We are looking for someone to oversee the bookings for either our West or Central assembly presentations teams. For more information contact Steve Whyatt

Partners in Prayer

Lifting children, schools & GenR8 in prayer. To partner with us contact Debbie Jackman

Latest News!

Keep up with our news and events:
Find out more >

Visit our Inspire Picture Gallery

Search Our Website