Diocese of Chelmsford

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Diocese of Chelmsford
Ecclesiastical province Canterbury
Archdeaconries Barking, Chelmsford, Colchester, Harlow, Southend, Stansted, West Ham
Parishes 463[1]
Churches 588 (As of August 2014)[2]
Schools 140[3]
Cathedral Chelmsford Cathedral
Current leadership
Bishop Stephen Cottrell, Bishop of Chelmsford
Suffragans John Wraw, area Bishop of Bradwell
Peter Hill, area Bishop of Barking[4]
Roger Morris, area Bishop of Colchester[5]
Archdeacons David Lowman, Archdeacon of Chelmsford
Annette Cooper, Archdeacon of Colchester
Elwin Cockett, Archdeacon of West Ham
Martin Webster, Archdeacon of Harlow
Robin King, Archdeacon of Stansted
Mina Smallman, Archdeacon of Southend
John Perumbalath, Archdeacon of Barking

The Diocese of Chelmsford is a Church of England diocese, part of the Province of Canterbury. The diocese covers Essex and the five East London boroughs of Barking and Dagenham, Havering, Newham, Redbridge, and Waltham Forest (most of which made up the historic county of Essex), and is co-terminous with the boundaries of the Catholic Diocese of Brentwood. It is divided into three episcopal areas, each with its own area bishop. The Diocese covers a region of around 1,500 square miles (3,900 km2)[3] and has a population of more than 3 million;[2] it has 463 parishes[1] and a total of 588 churches;[2] it is the second largest Anglican diocese in England.[citation needed]

The Diocese was created on 23 January 1914,[6] covering the entire county of Essex and that part of Kent north of the River Thames (North Woolwich), which had previously been part of the Diocese of St Albans.[7]

The Diocese of Chelmsford is Europe's premier region for regeneration. The Thames Gateway, the M11 corridor and Stansted airport, Harwich seaport and the main site for the London 2012 Olympics are all located within the Diocese.


The diocese of Chelmsford is overseen by the Bishop of Chelmsford. Since the area scheme was created in 1983,[8] the diocese has been divided into three episcopal areas which are overseen by an area bishop. The diocese is divided further into archdeaconries, each divided into a number of deaneries.

The suffragan See of Colchester was created in 1882 (for the Diocese of St Albans until 1914), Barking in 1901 (also for St Albans), and Bradwell in 1968.

Episcopal areas Archdeaconries Deaneries
Barking Episcopal Area
(overseen by the area Bishop of Barking)
Archdeaconry of Harlow Deanery of Epping Forest & Ongar
Deanery of Harlow
Archdeaconry of West Ham Deanery of Newham
Deanery of Redbridge
Deanery of Waltham Forest
Archdeaconry of Barking Deanery of Barking
Deanery of Havering
Bradwell Episcopal Area
(overseen by the area Bishop of Bradwell)
Archdeaconry of Chelmsford Deanery of Brentwood
Deanery of Chelmsford North
Deanery of Chelmsford South
Deanery of Maldon and Dengie
Archdeaconry of Southend Deanery of Basildon
Deanery of Hadleigh
Deanery of Rochford
Deanery of Southend on Sea
Deanery of Thurrock
Colchester Episcopal Area
(overseen by the area Bishop of Colchester)
Archdeaconry of Colchester Deanery of Colchester
Deanery of Harwich
Deanery of St Osyth
Deanery of Witham
Archdeaconry of Stansted Deanery of Braintree
Deanery of Dunmow and Stansted
Deanery of Hinckford
Deanery of Saffron Walden



Alongside the diocesan Bishop of Chelmsford (the Rt Revd Stephen Cottrell), the Diocese has three area (suffragan) bishops: John Wraw, area Bishop of Bradwell; Peter Hill, area Bishop of Barking; and Roger Morris, area Bishop of Colchester.

There are also some retired bishops living in the diocese who are licensed as honorary assistant bishops: John Ball, a former assistant bishop in the Tanzanian Diocese of Central Tanganyika, has lived in Springfield since his retirement in 2000[10] and a retired area Bishop of Bradwell, Derek Bond, has lived in Saffron Walden since 2007.[11] Trevor Mwamba, Team Rector of Barking and former Bishop of Botswana was licensed as an honorary assistant bishop at diocesan synod on 9 November 2013.[12]

Alternative episcopal oversight (for parishes in the diocese which reject the ministry of priests who are women) is provided by the provincial episcopal visitor, Norman Banks, Bishop suffragan of Richborough, who is licensed as an honorary assistant bishop of the diocese in order to facilitate his work there.


  1. 1.0 1.1 Diocese of Chelmsford – Parishes (Accessed 12 February 2015)
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 Diocese of Chelmsford – Media Facts, August 2014 (Accessed 12 February 2015)
  3. 3.0 3.1 Diocese of Chelmsford – Children's Ministry (Accessed 12 February 2015)
  4. Diocese of Southwell & Nottingham – Archdeacon of Nottingham to become Bishop (Accessed 2 May 2014)
  5. Diocese of Worcester – Archdeacon of Worcester to become Bishop of Colchester (Accessed 2 May 2014)
  6. The London Gazette: no. 28795. p. 588. 23 January 1914. Retrieved 4 March 2012.
  7. London Gazette. 23 January 1914.
  8. "4: The Dioceses Commission, 1978–2002" (PDF). Church of England. Retrieved 23 April 2013.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  9. Diocese of Chelmsford – Episcopal areas map (Accessed 12 February 2015)
  10. "JM Ball". Crockford's Clerical Directory (online ed.). Church House Publishing. Retrieved 11 November 2013.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles> (subscription required)
  11. "CD Bond". Crockford's Clerical Directory (online ed.). Church House Publishing. Retrieved 11 November 2013.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles> (subscription required)
  12. Diocese of Chelmsford, Diocese Synod – Minutes of the 132nd meeting of the Synod, 9 November 2013 (Accessed 22 April 2014)


External links

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