THEOLOGICAL-COLLEGE staff were added to the Universities special
constituency in the revision stage of draft legislation for
synodical electoral reforms, which was taken on Saturday morning.
Final approval was given on Tuesday morning.
The Synod dealt with four related pieces of legislation dealing
with elections to the General Synod: the Draft Amending Canon No.
32, the Convocations (Elections to Upper House) (Amendment)
Resolution, the Clergy Representation Rules (Amendment) Resolution,
and the Church Representation Rules (Amendment) [(No. 2)]
Opening the debates, Geoffrey Tattersall QC
(Manchester) reported on the work of the revision committee, which
he chaired. It had deleted the proposal to remove the current
weighting in favour of the Northern Province in both the House of
Clergy and the House of Laity. This would have changed the ratio
from 70:30 in favour of Canterbury to 72:28. It had also removed
the limit on membership from the diocese in Europe, effectively
increasing its representation from two to three.
The committee also proposed a new single Universities
constituency covering both provinces, with four members to be
elected - at least one from each province. There would be no
constraint on the number of persons to be elected from any single
university. The register of electors of the new constituency
wouldbe maintained by the Presiding Officer and published on the C
of E website.
The steering committee had also changed the definition of the
electorate in the Europe and Sodor & Man dioceses.
The Revd Professor Richard Burridge (London
University) paid tribute to the work of the revision committee and
urged the Synod to approve all the suggestions that it had
The Synod took note of the report.
Amendments from Clive Scowen (London),
the Revd Christopher Hobbs (London), and
Canon Simon Killwick (Manchester) were either not
put or lost.
Canon Chris Sugden (Oxford) proposed an
amendment to include theological-education institutions in the
legislation. A member of the steering committee resisted this
amendment, but it was carried in a vote by Houses: Bishops 12-10;
Clergy 71-64 with 3 recorded abstentions; and Laity 76-61 with 2
The amended draft was put to the vote on Tuesday morning and was
carried nem. con.