‘I’m a mate for the journey’ – the chaplain employed in the construction industry


Chaplains have continued to serve vulnerable and dispersed communities throughout the pandemic, including those in industry – like Ewen Huffman.
Ewen in his make shift pulpit on a building site he is in high viz and a hard hat

Previously an electronics engineer, and then a church leader for 30 years, Ewen Huffman was seconded to the Diocese of Bath and Wells in January 2020 and appointed as Chaplain on the site of the new Hinkley Point C (HPC) power station in Somerset. 

The workforce at HPC is a diverse community of more than 5,000 people – predominantly male, and younger and more multiethnic than the surrounding areas on the Somerset coast.

As Chaplain, Ewen is there for everyone, of all faiths and none, providing spiritual leadership amid a pressured workforce and drawing together people together across boundaries, nationalities, beliefs, and religions. 

Ewen’s presence also offers the opportunity to bring faith into the workplace. He has held ceremonies of prayer before tunneling and concrete pours and provided a pastoral presence and spiritual support in times of trouble. 

“People are spiritual beings,” he explained.

“Even the people who say they are irreligious at times want me to pray with them, and they want to receive a blessing and the peace.” 

Throughout the pandemic, Ewen’s role has been for the most part centred on supporting a workforce “trying to find their life and rhythms during Covid.”

“I’m a mate for the journey,” he said.

“I’m big into building friendships, it’s a privilege to get to be there for people when they have a significant need and to get to talk with them about spiritually significant things.” 

More information:

  • The Church of England's Vision and Strategy for the 2020s is helping us to be a Church which proclaims and lives out the Good News of Jesus Christ afresh in every generation.