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UK news in brief

22 March 2013


BBC apologises for Archbishop of Canterbury sketch

THE BBC has said that it "did not mean to cause any offence" when it broadcast a sketch last Friday in which the actor Rowan Atkinson played a fictional Archbishop of Canterbury (News, 15 March). The sketch, which was broadcast as part of the BBC's Comic Relief coverage, drew more than 2200 complaints. In the sketch, Mr Atkinson compared the pop band One Direction to Jesus's disciples, and said that prayer "doesn't work". The sketch has since been removed from the BBC iPlayer.

New Dean of Leicester appointed from Chapter

THE Canon Chancellor of Leicester Cathedral, the Revd David Monteith, will be the next Dean of Leicester, it was announced on Tuesday. He will succeed the Very Revd Vivienne Faull, who was appointed Dean of York last year ( News, 6 July). The Bishop of Leicester, the Rt Revd Tim Stevens, said that Canon Monteith had "made a significant contribution to Leicester Cathedral and the wider diocese since his arrival in 2009. He has already shown us his great skills as a leader and pastor, heading up the cathedral's pastoral and educational work, and leading the cathedral as it moved into St Martin's House." Canon Monteith was taking the "lead role" for interring the remains of Richard III in the cathedral, Bishop Stevens said ( News, 14 September, 8 February).

Archaeologists may have discovered plague victims

ARCHEOLOGISTS working on the Crossrail project have discovered a 14th-century burial ground in central London, which may contain the remains of victims of the Black Death. Thirteen skeletons were uncovered, lying in two carefully laid-out rows, on the edge of Charterhouse Square, in Farringdon, which were "believed to be up to 660 years old", Crossrail said in a statement issued last Friday. Records reference a burial ground in the Farringdon area that opened during the Black Death.

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