Richard is a retired chartered surveyor in estate management and was the Property Secretary for the Diocese of Salisbury for 30 years. He set up several schemes on glebe land for affordable housing for local people, which led to Board membership of the Churches National Housing Coalition, chairing management groups for a series of national initiatives in that field. These included the multi-million pound Home Office funded Regenerate project disseminating best practice for the running of local services by and for residents on large city estates.

He currently chairs the steering group of Faith in Affordable Housing and is a Trustee of Housing Justice. He has been on the board of Wiltshire Rural Housing Association, and on the Executive Committee of the Charities Property Association. He is a Justice of the Peace for South East Wiltshire, and involved in the running of his local Church and community on the very rural borders of Wiltshire and Dorset.