News in brief

10 August 2011

Shakespeare mystery deepens
An archaeologist from the Churches Conservation Trust cleans up the crypt (above) at All Saints’, Billesley, Stratford-upon-Avon, a possible venue for the wedding of William Shakespeare and Anne Hathaway. The Grade I church has been opened for the first time in recent years. The findings from the crypt willbe displayed online at      

Priest arrested on suspicion of sham marriages
A PRIEST in south London has been arrested on suspicion of conducting sham marriages. It was reported this week that the Revd Nathan Ntege, Vicar of St Jude with St Aidan, Thornton Heath, was arrested on 4 June and bailed until 6 December. A spokesman for the UK Border Agency said that Mr Ntege’s bail terms “mean that he is not currently able to undertake public ministry until the investigation is complete”. The spokesman said that the diocese of Southwark would ensure that “[Mr] Ntege, his family and the parish receive pastoral care and support”.

Bishop of Oxford leads pilgrimage on Twitter
THE Bishop of Oxford, the Rt Revd John Pritchard, began leading a pil­grimage this week using the Twitter website. Bishop Pritchard began a tour of 15 churches in his diocese on Monday; he has been “tweeting” his pro­gress, with prayers from his book Pocket Prayers for Pilgrims.

Bishop Holtam reviews Ramsbury suffragan see
THE new Bishop of Salisbury, the Rt Revd Nick Holtam, has commissioned a review, led by the Dean of Salisbury, the Very Revd June Osborne, to help him decide whether there should be a new Bishop of Ramsbury. The see has been vacant since December.

The diocese said: “Under a new nationally agreed Church of England process, when a suffragan or area see becomes vacant, a diocesan bishop must first consult his own diocese before making a decision to reappoint. But if he does wish to proceed, he must make an application to the national Dioceses Commission.”

Competition offers £1000 for pro-Anglican essay
THE St Boniface Trust, an Anglican charity, has announced a competition with a prize of £1000 for a 5000-word essay on the subject “Why I am an Anglican and believe I shall remain so”. The Trust says it is “concerned that yet more divisions are being created within both the Anglican and Roman Catholic” Churches. It “feels that more attention needs to be paid to the understanding of Anglicanism as a distinctive witness”. For further details, email the secretary, David Prior, at

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