Norfolk churches' silver expert honoured by the Queen
A Norfolk man who works with the county’s churches in the specialist areas of silver and furnishings has been made an MBE in the Queen’s New Year honours list.
Nigel Bumphrey, from Norwich, was made a Member of the Order of the British Empire for Services to the Church in Norfolk. He is an expert silversmith who has in the past also reunited church plate with its rightful owners and was a member of the Diocese of Norwich’s Diocesan Advisory Committee for the Care of Churches.
Caroline Rawlings, Church Development Officer for the Diocese of Norwich, said: “Nigel was first appointed to the DAC in 1989 and has served as a dedicated servant working with Norfolk churches since that time in the specialist areas of silver and furnishings.
“Through his considerable contacts and his own skills he has helped repair and conserve for future generations many of these wonderful treasures. Whilst Nigel has retired from the DAC he has agreed to continue in his role as the DAC’s silver adviser.”
In 2014, the EDP reported that Nigel helped reunite a £1,000 silver chalice found by a schoolboy in a NE Norfolk woodland, with the nearby Skeyton Church after it was taken in a break-in three years earlier.
According to the EDP, Nigel: “checked ecclesiastical insurance records, the stolen arts register, contacted the Victoria and Albert Museum, alerted the Roman Catholic Church in Norfolk and Suffolk, and arranged for an email with photos of the chalice to be sent by the diocese to all churchwardens.”
Nigel, who attends Norwich Cathedral, is a former woodwork teacher at City of Norwich School.
Pictured above is the chalice, stolen from Skeyton Church in 2011 and found in nearby woodland in 2014 and identified by Nigel Bumphrey. Picture courtesy of EDP24.