Phoebe Peto Willets

Phoebe Peto Willets (1917 - 1978)

Phoebe Peto Willetts, nee Dickinson studied at both the Birmingham School of Art and the Royal Academy Schools between 1934 and 1940. She served in the land army during WWII marrying in 1942 the conscientious objector Alfred Willetts.
Many of her works reflect her deep and lifelong interest in social justice, the church and the ordination of women. Her deep commitment against nuclear weapons lead to a 6 month prison sentence for blocking the entrance to the Atomic Weapons Research Establishment at Foulness Island.

In 1966 she was ordained as a Deaconess in the Church Of England, this lead to her campaign for the ordination of women as priests. In 1978 defying the church authorities she become the first woman to concelebrate communion in an English parish church, Phoebe died a few later, how her writing on the role of women in the Church were published in 1979 in a book Sharing the Vision.