Who's Who in the UK creationist movements
"I do not feel obliged to believe that the same God who endowed us with sense, reason, and intellect had intended for us to forgo their use." - Galileo Galilei (1564-1642)
Index of Leading Creationist Activists
The following is an index of creationist activists active within the UK and the Channel Islands. It is in alphabetical order by surname. There are 123 names on the list of which 26 are resident in Northern Ireland (21% of total - Northern Ireland has 3% of the population of the UK!). It includes a number of Americans, Canadians and Australians who, from time to time, visit the UK to push their creationism. These are marked with a *.
Firstly though, as an antedote, the BCSE actually received an email from a creationist (Philip Snow) who actually asked to be placed on this list.
Farid Abou Rahme
David Anderson (what we think of him is too rude to publish)*
Nathan Anderson (See Update on Northern Ireland)
Cecil Andrews (Northern Ireland)
Mark Ballantine (See Update on Northern Ireland)
Richard Baxter (See Update on Northern Ireland)
Alan Campbell (See Update on Northern Ireland)
Ronnie Crawford (See Paisley's Party Backs Creationism in Schools)
Diane Eager *
David Galloway (see Centre for Intelligent Design)
Peter Gray (See Update on Northern Ireland)
Stephen Gilkinson (See Update on Northern Ireland)
Paul Givan MLA (See Update on Northern Ireland)
Robin Greer (Northern Ireland)
Phillip Johnson *
Carl Kerby *
Philip Knowles (See Update on Northern Ireland)
John Langlois (see Centre for Intelligent Design)
John MacArthur (See Truth in Science)*
Albert N. Martin (See Truth in Science)*
Paul McAdam (See Update on Northern Ireland)
Nelson McCausland MLA (See Update on Northern Ireland)
Colin McManus (See Update on Northern Ireland)
Stephen Moore (See (Paisley's Party Backs Creationism in Schools)
Philip Metcalfe (See Truth in Science)
Willis Metcalfe (now deceased)
Matthew Mills (See Update on Northern Ireland)
Norman Nevin (See Centre for Intelligent Design) (Northern Ireland)
Alastair Noble (see Centre for Intelligent Design)
Ian Paisley (See Update on Northern Ireland)
Ryan Patterson (See Update on Northern Ireland)
Edwin Potts MLA (See Update on Northern Ireland)
Philip Robinson (See Update on Northern Ireland)
David Simpson (See Update on Northern Ireland)
Mervyn Storey MLA (See Update on Northern Ireland)
James Tinsley (See (Paisley's Party Backs Creationism in Schools)
Keith Walker (See Update on Northern Ireland)
Tas Walker *
John Watterson (See Update on Northern Ireland)
Paul Watts (Genesis Agendum - no details available)
Rev Robert West (BNP)
This section details key activists in the creationist movement in the UK. Our research has indicated that the core activist movement in the UK centres on a list of signatories to a letter sent in 2002 to the then Secretary of State for Education, Estelle Morris (now Baroness Morris). The letter was an act of lobbying to allow the teaching of creationism in schools, although the word creationism was never used.
The letter, in our view, was notorious because none of the signatories declared that they were deeply involved with leading creationist organisations. Instead they used their occupational positions in academia (and to a small extent in school teaching and business) to describe who they were, and also claimed that they had written as an ad hoc group.
Our detailed analysis over many months has clearly shown the extent to which the 27 had been actively working together for many years to promote creationism. We have also established links of the signatories to the Christian Institute and the Vardy schools (see Emmanuel Schools Foundation). Indeed, one of the signatories was actually head of the Biblical Creation Society and a total of 14 (over half the signatories) were involved in this organisation alone. How this squares with being an ad hoc group is beyond us.
Answers in Genesis UK
"Debating creationists on the topic of evolution is rather like trying to play chess with a pigeon - it knocks the pieces over, craps on the board, and flies back to its flock to claim victory." - Scott David Weitzenhoffer, reviewer of Eugenie Scott's "Evolution vs. Creationism : An Introduction". See Science Daily
The overall head of Answers in Genesis in the USA is the abrasive Australian Ken Ham. It is slightly outside the scope of this section of our site to profile creationists world-wide, but Ham is a trustee of Answers in Genesis UK. So we have included a report on him, produced when he visited the UK in the Spring of 2006.
The CEO of Answers in Genesis UK is Monty White who, by virtue of that position, is arguably the number one full time professional creationist in the UK.
Paul Taylor is at the moment the "street proselytiser" for Answers in Genesis UK, following the apparent departure of Philip Bell from the organisation. Taylor's role involves presenting "lectures" on creationism all over the country, mostly to small non-conformist chapels and churches.
Taylor is a full time professional creationist proselytiser. In our view he is one of the most influential, if not the most influential, creationists in the UK.
Part One of our profile on Paul Taylor gives a general background whilst Part Two shows Answers in Genesis tactics and deception in action. The key fact that needs to be kept in mind is that Taylor is unqualified in biology. He is a chemistry teacher by background.
Philip Bell was, until the Spring of 2006, the other main street proselytiser for Answers In Genesis UK. Bell, who, very unusually for a fundamentalist, has a degree in Zoology, now appears to have left Answers in Genesis and his bio has been pulled from AiG's web site. We are not aware what has subsequently happened to him.
Answers in Genesis also ships in its people from the USA to preach and proselytise. Ken Ham appears to be a regular visitor to the UK. Carl Kerby is booked in for a tour of the UK in 2007.
Monty White is also a very active proselytiser for Answers in Genesis on top of his administrative/managerial activities.
Creation Research UK
Creation Research UK is the UK and European arm of the Australian creationist ministry, Creation Research. The latter is headed up by John Mackay, who has a degree in geology. The UK arm , headed up by an electrician, Randall Hardy, is based in Ashton-under-Lyne in Lancashire. Hardy appears to combine this with his other religious activities. He has been involved in creationism for a good few years. Mackay's involvement dates back over a quarter of a century and originally he was a partner with the now head of Answers in Genesis, Ken Ham. They split in 1987.
Mackay gained a large amount of publicity in the Spring of 2006 when the press latched on to his tour and his teaching of creationism in British state schools.
Hardy had the job of handling public relations. He both lied and smeared people in the process.
Others known to be or to have been involved in Creation Research UK are Richard Johnston and Nick Cowan (head of chemistry at Bluecoat School in Liverpool).
Biblical Creation Society
"The difference between genius and stupidity is that genius has its limits." - Albert Einstein
The head of the Biblical Creation Society is Paul Garner and its travelling secretary is John Peet. Both were signatories to the 2002 Estelle Morris letter as were 12 other people associated with the Biblical Creation Society including the spokesman for the letter, Andy McIntosh and the then head of the organisation, Edgar Andrews. Other associates of the Biblical Creation Society that were signatories to that letter are as follows:
Other names that have been associated with the Biblical Creation Society are Colin Reeves, Monty White, Peter Senior, Philip Bell, Paul Taylor, Jonathan Swingler, Andrew Snelling, Stephen Layfield and Richard Johnston.
These all appear to have written for the journal of the Biblical Creation Society. Other names who have written for it include Geoff Thomas, Ray Trainer, Diana Paines, Barbara Verrall, Charles Whitworth, Magaret Helder, Stephen Lloyd, Sheena Tyler, Andrew Cullen,
Alan Gillen, , Mike Matthews, Ranald Macaulay, Wayne R Spencer, Danny R Faulkner, Neil Brownrigg, Alan L Gillen, Marc Surtees, Paul Boyd-Lee, Judith Young, Philip Duce, Alan Linton, Pete J William, Leonard Loose, Steven Robinson, Ashby L Camp, Sergey N Rumyantsev, J. Timothy Unruh, Eoghan Mhor, Joachim Scheven, Ewan More and Reinhard Junker.
Truth in Science
"If a sect does officially insist that its structure of belief demands that evolution be false, then no compromise is possible. An honest and competent biology teacher can only conclude that the sect's beliefs are wrong and that its religion is a false one." - George Gaylord Simpson (1964)
Details of this organisation were few and far between until September 2006 and little had been said about it since 2004. However, Truth in Science broke cover in September 2006 and it is now a very visible organisation with prominent creationist activists heavily involved.
Those involved (past and present) in Truth in Science are well known and well connected creationist names with long track records in state education in the UK. From the little that Truth in Science has said, it is probably the most extreme of the UK creationist movements. We therefore ask the reader to note well the names it claims are involved with it and the enormous overlap with other creationist organisations. It contains many of the most activist academic creationists:
A total of six of these people were signatories to the 2002 Estelle Morris letter - McIntosh, Burgess, Taylor, Linkens, Wells and Jones. The following also appear to have been involved in Truth in Science as work by them is presented on Truth in Science's web site: Marc Surtees, Paul Garner (Biblical Creation Society and also signatory to the 2002 Estelle Morris letter) and John Peet (also of the Biblical Creation Society and signatory to the 2002 Estelle Morris letter).
In other words it is the same long standing group of UK creationists regrouped around yet another name.
There is a long list of people involved in Genesis Agendum. We have no details of Paul Watts, one of its trustees, but the other trustees are well know creationist activists:
The names listed are nearly all involved, or have been, in education or have tried to influence education to get creationism accepted in science lessons. Eleven of the names were signatories to the 2002 Estelle Morris letter - Garner, Jones, Lewis, Peet, Worraker, Tyler, McIntosh, Baker, Darrall, Fuller and Burgess.
There are a number of other people who have spoken within the framework of Genesis Agendum. These include Dr Peter Williams, Dr John Bimson, Dr David Ellis, Dr Philip Duce, Eoghan Mohr, David Rohl (see Steven Robinson), Michael Garton, Richard Milton, Steven Robinson and Dr Marc Surtees.
Creation Science Movement
The Creation Science Movement has few members or associates compared with the other creationist movements listed above. Its four speakers are:
Farid Abou Rahme
Creation Ministries International UK
This is a new creationist organisation, the UK and European arm of the Australian Creation Ministries International. As at the beginning of 2007 it had only one full time employee.
Creationists in Academia
"Two things are infinite: the universe and human stupidity; and I'm not sure about the universe." - Albert Einstein
This section details academics in British universities who have been or who are also activists in the creationist movement. These are basically the "elite" (for want of a better word) of the creationist movement in the UK. They are the bit which gives it a veneer of intellectual and scientific credibility amongst some sectors of the public.
However, the actual number of such creationist academics is tiny and appears to have been falling over the last ten years as older creationist academics retire. Essentially, the creationists have inflated the numbers by including visiting lecturers and Emeritus (retired) professors and even part-time academics.
An analysis is given in the section on Creationist Academics.
Academic does not mean scientist. Some of the names are engineers, others are basically in management education or such subjects as geography.
Whilst everybody is free to choose whatever religious beliefs they want, and that is basically a very private matter, we do believe that it is right to draw the attention of the public to creationism in British universities because we believe that creationism is a threat to all higher education. We also believe that the public has the right to know which universities and staff are active fundamentalists in order that they can make informed decisions in taking university level courses.
Stephen Taylor, Senior Lecturer, Electrical Engineering
David Back, Professor of Pharmacology and Therapeutics
Terry Hamblin (part time)
George Marshall (part time?)
Andrew Sims (retired)
Mark Toleman (wavering)
Manchester Metropolitan University:
Colin Garner (possibly not a YECer)
Geoff Barnard (Now apparently retired)
Intelligent Design Advocates in Academia
Intelligent Design is on the wane as a "plausible" hypothesis, following the Dover trial last year. At least in the USA, the public increasingly sees it as a front for religion, not a serious scientific idea. It isn't clear how far the few academics in the UK who believe it are now distancing themselves from this nonsense.
The list of Intelligent Design Advocates in academia should not therefore be treated as an absolutely definitive list (and never should have been anyway). It is not the only list in existence. The Times Higher Education Supplement has suggested that there are 14 ID advocates in academia but the list has not been published as far as we are aware.
In any event, it will differ from our list as we have limited information and have based it on the Discovery Institute's exceedingly flawed data.
The highest profile IDer (or at least apologist for Intelligent Design) is Steve Fuller, an academic sociologist at the University of Warwick. However, after being an expert witness at the Dover trial (his side lost), his star is seen by some to be on the wane.
Other academics who are understood to support Intelligent Design include:
John Walton (St Andrews)
John Lennox (Oxford)
John Roche (Oxford)
The proponents of Intelligent Design (and creationism) are notorious for claiming support from scientists when no such support exists. One such scientist they have claimed, or suggested, to be "their own" is Milton Wainwright. His public position, though, is ambiguous.
The is a list of people who have been to British Universities and hold PhDs and who have signed the Discovery Institute's statement of dissent on evolution at Intelligent Design Advocates. However, many of the 34 names are not in academia and/or are not resident in the UK or have retired. Ten are known young earth creationists.
Creationists in Education
Dr. Jenny Tonge (Richmond Park): "Is the Prime Minister happy?" - [Hon. Members: "Yes."] "Is the Prime Minister happy to allow the teaching of creationism alongside Darwin's theory of evolution in state schools?" The Prime Minister: "First, I am very happy. Secondly, I know that the Hon. Lady is referring to a school in the North-East, and I think that certain reports about what it has been teaching are somewhat exaggerated."
Here we take a look at those who are or have been involved in education of children up to the age of 18. Strictly speaking, it should not cover those in private education. That is outside our remit. However, where this has involved public advocacy (directly or through association with organizations that do) of teaching creationism in science (or as science) in state schools, it is within our remit and we provide details accordingly.
Sylvia Baker - Former headteacher of Trinity Christian School and a signatory to the 2002 Estelle Morris letter.
John Burn - Former headteacher at Emmanuel College and now Chairman, the Christian Institute.
Nigel McQuoid - Head, Emmanuel Schools Foundation
Jonathan Winch - Principal, Emmanuel College
Gwyneth Evans - Vice Principal, Emmanuel College
Paul Yeulett - Maths teacher, Emmanuel College
Stephen Layfield - Head of Science, Emmanuel College
Ian Brew - Principal, Trinity College
Gary Wiecek - ex-Vice Principal, King's Academy
Nick Cowan - Head of Chemistry at the Bluecoat School, Liverpool.
John Rhodes - Deputy Vice Principal, Kings Academy
Other Creationists and Intelligent Designers
In this section we take a look at who we believe are other creationists with a significant impact on the spread of fundamentalism in the UK. One key figure that keeps cropping up (in the Guardian newspaper, for example) is the Californian "philanthropist" billionaire and recluse, Howard Ahmanson. However, Ahmanson's power and influence extends well beyond creationism and Intelligent Design into US politics, the Episcopalian and Anglican movements and Oxford (see Oxford Connections).
This man's past involvement with the Dominionist/Reconstructionalist Chalcedon Foundation is truly frightening. Click on Reconstructionism and here, Dominionism, for futher details of this horrific theology. If implemented in the UK, it appears that about 98% of the population could end up being slaughtered. Ahmanson has, in recent years, tried to distance himself from it (ineffectively in the author's opinion) but the reader is reminded that Ahmanson sat on the board of the Chalcedon Foundation, the prime source of the theology, for 25 years. Moreover, Reconstructionism is seen to be highly influential in the US fundamentalist movement which includes powerful televangelicals such as Pat Robertson.
Using the shorthand term of "follow the money", the most powerfull creationist in the UK is Sir Peter Vardy, operating through his Emmanuel Schools Foundation. Vardy is politically well connected and is generally regarded to be on good personal terms with Prime Minister Tony Blair.
Pastor Richard Turner of the Hyde Street Chapel is a highly active fundamentalist who has closely associated his independent Baptist church in Winchester with several signatories to the 2002 Estelle Morris letter.
We haven't detailed many of the creationist ministers in the UK but amongst those we have are David Holloway (CofE), George Curry (CofE) and Cecil Andrews (Take Heed Ministries). We understand that around 1,000 of the Anglican clergy are either young earth creationists or believers in Intelligent Design.
Andrew Snelling is an Australian who works full time for the Institute for Creation Research in the USA. He has been a frequent vistor to the UK and has lectured for Genesis Agendum.
It is the purpose of this section of our web site to detail creationists that have, or potentially have, a significant influence on education in the UK. That means that we have left out nearly all of the leading creationists based outside of the UK. However, details of most of them are readily available using a Google search.
The "Clown Prince" of creationism is the American Kent Hovind. Also click onto this other link, Kent Hovind, for further information about this snake-oil salesman. He's in prison at the moment and is expected to be there for several years.
Some leading names include Henry Morris (deceased), John Morris (his son), Duane Gish, also of the Institute for Creation Research, John Whitcomb who helped "found" modern creationism with Henry Morris, Kurt Wise (Bryan College), Carl Wieland, Don Batten and Jonathan Sarfati (all three of Creation Ministries International), Werner Gitt, Carl Baugh (an utter nutcase), Gary North (frightening), Michael Behe (Discovery Institute Fellow), Jonathan Wells (a Moonie and Discovery Institute Fellow) and Bill Dembski (Discovery Institute) and John Woodmorappe (wacko stuff about Noah's Ark and dating methods - his real name is Jan Peczkis). Phillip Johnson is widely regarded as the brains behind the Discovery Institute and is a wily lawyer and pseudo-scientist (he has no scientific qualifications).
Stephen Meyer is another high profile name from the same organisation. He was a co-founder of the organisation. Paul Nelson is another well known Discovery Institute Fellow.
Jerry Bergman is another well known creationist in the USA. Bergman has put together a list of 3,000 scientists world-wide who he claims are sceptical about the Theory of Evolution. The list, which actually appears to have 2,000 names on it, is full of errors and inaccuracies and no systematic attempt at checking the information appears to have been made.
The list is full of people who are dead or are not scientists or who work for institutions that don't exist or closed down years ago. No attempt appears to have been made to check what their actual views are, where they work or what their qualifications are. There are cases where qualifications are attributed to people even though they don't have them.
Amongst the US televangelicals, Pat Robertson is the leading creationist televagengelist. Jerry Falwell's star is probably on the wane these days but he is still a high profile creationist. Robertson and others regularly appear on the UK satellite-delivered religious TV channels such as God TV and Revelation TV. They tend to be teaching to the converted though when they spout on about creationism.
The Creation Research Society, founded by Henry Morris in 1963, appears to be one of the more prominent creationist organisations. Details can be found at Talk Origins. CRS is very US-focused.
BCSE member Lenny Flank has written a long essay on who the "creationist scientists" are. It is US focused but anyone involved in the anti-creationist movement in the UK will recognise the names there. Moreover, if you are thinking of becoming an anti-creationist activist or are just interested in the issues, it is an excellent primer.
Answers in Genesis has a list of creationist scientists at http://www.answersingenesis.org/home/area/bios/. Bios of many of them are provided there.
Finally, there are the real nasties in the fundamentalist movement. These are the ones that want to kill people they disagree with. Unfortunately, their influence runs deep in the creationist movement. Perhaps the nastiest of the lot was the late Rousas Rushdoony but his views are pretty close to his still active and barmy son in law, Gary North.