Reverend Canon David Osbourne has been awarded a Mayoral Medal from the Mayor of Lincoln for 25 years of dedicated service as Rector of Boultham and for his work as volunteer Anglican Chaplain to the University of Lincoln.  

David was one of seven recipients of the Mayoral Medal which gives the thanks of the City of Lincoln to a person who has worked tirelessly for others without any recognition or remuneration.

The citation on his award reads: 'In recognition of your outstanding work, commitment and dedication to Holy Cross Church and, indeed the community. Your enthusiasm and hard work has been recognised by many and your devotion to the cause has certainly not gone unnoticed.' 

He was nominated by Boultham Councillor Ralph Toofany who he came to know during the building of the Lincoln Central Mosque, which is located in Boultham and was completed in 2018. Over the last few years David has been instrumental in cultivating relationships with the local Muslim community and was honoured to be invited to attend the ceremony when they broke the ground and at the official opening of the Mosque.

Born in Grimsby he felt his calling as a young boy in primary school after reading ‘A Child’s Friend’, a pictorial version of the bible, where he saw a small boy helping Jesus with the loaves and fishes and saw himself in that role. Even now in his 60s, David still sees himself as that young boy helping Jesus. He was ordained in 1979 and came to Boultham in 1994.

“I was so surprised but very pleased to be nominated but as I see myself as being here for the whole community rather than as chaplain to a congregation. It means so much to me to be recognised by the city” David says. “I don’t see that what I do is special – it’s what I should be doing.  Being a parish priest is a privilege and I take great pleasure from encouraging others in what they are seeking to do” he said.

He continued: “Boultham is very much a family community; although this is a parish of 13,000 plus, I I have come to know people through the generations. For me, a key part of the Christian mission are the marriage and baptism ceremonies;  Archdeacon Gavin told me that there is no-one else in the Diocese that baptises 42 children a year! Each child is unique and when I hold them I am aware that they are the most precious possession that parents have. It’s very humbling.

“I only thought I would be in Boultham for five years and then be moved on. People in the parish have said to me 'you can’t go yet as God hasn’t finished with you here yet.'  I still feel that this is where God is calling me to be."

Alongside his role as parish priest, David served for thirteen years as the Chairman of the city’s Moorland Neighbourhood Regeneration Board.  Here the Neighbourhood Management Programme was trialled, specifically designed to work with deprived families to ensure that they had a voice. Following this he was invited to serve as volunteer Anglican Chaplain at the University of Lincoln where he has been for two years. He has also been Chaplain to the Mayor for the last year.