THE Secretary General of the General Synod, William Fittall, is to step down on 30 November, a week after the induction and inauguration of the new Synod.
Mr Fittall, who is 61, graduated from Oxford, and entered the civil service, in which his appointments included Private Secretary to the Northern Ireland Secretary. He also headed the Counter-Terrorism Division of the Home Office.
"After a succession of demanding roles, I have, with my wife, concluded that the time has come for me to retire from full-time work and move to a more flexible pattern of life," Mr Fittall said on Friday.
"When the time comes, there will be more to say about the privilege of having occupied this unique role. In the mean time, there is still much work to be done, not least in relation to the reform and renewal programme, the Church's engagement with government after the forthcoming election, and the preparations for a new synodical quinquennium."
The Archbishop of Canterbury said that Mr Fittall had made "a substantial and prodigious contribution to the work and life of the Church of England. For over a decade he has been unstinting in his efforts to ably lead the staff of the Council, and professionally support the work of the Synod. He has been indefatigable in his service, and I will personally miss him greatly."
The search for his successor as Secretary General to the Synod and the Archbishops' Council is to begin immediately.