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The Ministry Training Course


Who's it for?

The South West Gospel Partnership (SWGP) Ministry Training Course is a one-day-a-week course for those who want to understand the Bible better and be equipped to teach it to others. 

The course runs every Thursday from 10am to 3.30pm, (with Fellowship Groups from 9.25am), at St. Bartholomew’s Church Bath, over 3 ten week terms. 

There is an optional second year which builds on what is learnt in the first year.

It is ideal for church workers and apprentices, preachers, gap-year students, youth and children's workers, home group leaders, women's workers and those in student ministry, indeed any who are actively involved in teaching the Bible and desire to be better equipped.  It is not restricted to those in paid Christian work, but is also suitable for those in retirement or who are able to take a day out from work on a Thursday.


The MTC 2024/25 costs £230 per term. 


Each week is divided into four main one hour sessions (with an optional extra at the end of the day):

Bible Overview

Looking at how God's Word fits together from Genesis to Revelation. We study a different biblical book each week and students are encouraged to prepare by reading through the book beforehand.


In-depth study of 6 Bible books from different genres, showing how to teach and apply them in the 21st century. In 2023-24, we are focusing on Exodus, Judges, Job, Mark, Acts and 1 Corinthians.

Gospel Ministry

Practical training from a range of experienced pastors and Bible teachers. Subjects include Christian leadership, Giving Talks, Personal Evangelism, Church Planting, Youth Ministry, Introduction to Biblical Counselling and Apologetics.


A chance to gain experience in giving talks and leading Bible studies with feedback from ministers and preachers. After preparing passages in the first term, students practise giving talks or leading Bible studies in a group setting.

Hebrew (optional)

We learn Biblical Hebrew in an accessible and fun way - learning key words, basic grammar, memorising Bible verses and using songs.


We also have our British Museum Trip, as we spend a day seeing how archaeology supports the Bible and gives insight into the background of biblical events. 

A typical day looks like this:


Fellowship Groups


09:50-10:00 Prayer and praise
10:00-11:05 Bible Overview
11.05-11.20 Coffee
11:20-12:30 Expositions
12:30-1:15 Lunch
1:15-2:15 Gospel Ministry
2.15-2.30 Coffee
2:30-3:30 Workshops
3:35-4:20 Hebrew (optional)



Charlie Ward is the Course Director. He studied at Oak Hill College before becoming Assistant Minister at St Bart's in Bath in 2006. He teaches the Bible Overview, Church History and a range of other subjects on the course.

Speakers who teach on the course include:

  • Rupert Bentley-Taylor (Bath) - Isaiah, Judges;
  • Katie Fitzgerald (Biblical Counselling UK) - Introduction to Counselling;
  • Celia Ford (Bath) - Apologetics;
  • Jonty Frith (St Nicholas', Bathampton) - Reading the Bible 1-1, Workshops;
  • Tom Heasman (Widcombe Baptist, Bath) - Evangelistic Culture; 
  • Doug Johnson (Yeovil) - Job, Joshua;
  • Ian Lewis (Bath) - Acts, Genesis 1-11, Postmodernism, Principles of Exposition;
  • Ed Moll (St George’s, Wembdon) - Preparing & Leading Group Bible Studies, Giving a Bible Talk, How the Bible came to be, Matthew;
  • Bruce Rossington (Kensington Baptist, Bristol) - World Mission;
  • Spencer Shaw (Emmanuel Evangelical, Chippenham) - Exodus, Hebrews;
  • Ad Taylor-Weekes (Emmanuel, Bath) - Workshops;
  • Neil Todman (Philip Street Baptist, Bristol) - Church-planting, 1 Corinthians, Leadership;
  • Tom Underhill (Emmanuel, Bath) - Doctrine, Mark, Emotions in Christian Life and Ministry.


Term Dates


MTC 2023/24

Autumn Term 2023:  21 Sep - 30 Nov (Half-term 26 Oct)

Spring Term 2024:    11 Jan - 21 Mar (Half-term 15 Feb)

Summer Term 2024: 25 Apr - 4 Jul (Half-term 30 May)  


MTC 2024/25 

Autumn Term: 26th Sep – 5th Dec 2024   (Half-term 31 Oct).  

Spring Term: 16th Jan – 27th Mar 2025  (Half-term 20 Feb).

Summer Term: 24th April – 3rd July 2025  (Half-term 29 May).


'Taster' Day

If you are interested in finding out more about the Ministry Training Course, we hold a Taster Day in Spring each year. This is a great opportunity for prospective students to attend 3 sessions of a 'typical' day on the course, with a presentation by the Course Director, Charlie Ward, over lunch.

The Taster Day for 2024 has now taken place, but if you have any queries about the course commencing on the 26th September or wish to enrol, please contact the Course Administrator, Jane Clark: [email protected]

Alternatively, the next Taster Day will be in Spring 2025 looking forward to the 2025/26 intake. The date for this will be announced later this year. 


MTC Bursary

From time to time we are able to offer bursaries to offset or cover the cost of the course fees for applicants in need of financial assistance to attend MTC. This is dependent on availability of funds. Awarding of bursaries is at the discretion of the Course Director and will take into account applications on a case-by-case basis.

If you would be interested in attending MTC but require financial assistance, we encourage you to contact Jane Clark ([email protected]) to discuss your situation and potential bursaries prior to making application.

If you would like to give a donation towards the MTC Bursary Fund to enable others to attend the course at a reduced cost, please see our Support page for details on how to give.



We are now welcoming applications for the Ministry Training Course 2024/25. The cost of the course is £230 per term. To enrol, please follow the link:

For further information, please contact the Course Administrator, Jane Clark - email address above.