Dean and Chancellor of Lincoln ‘step back’ over safeguarding issue

26 April 2019

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Lincoln Cathedral

Lincoln Cathedral

TWO senior members of staff at Lincoln Cathedral, the Dean and the Canon Chancellor, are on leave while a historic safeguarding matter, thought to involve vulnerable adults, is investigated.

A cathedral spokeswoman said that the Dean, the Very Revd Christine Wilson, had taken a leave of absence for “personal reasons”. The Canon Chancellor, the Revd Dr Paul Overend, had also “stepped back” from his post. The reasons for their temporary departures were “different”, but “connected to one issue”, the spokeswoman said.

The announcement was made on Palm Sunday. The Bishop of Lincoln, the Rt Revd Christopher Lowson, presided and preached at the main Easter eucharist at the cathedral last weekend.

The full statement read: “An issue has arisen and the Chancellor has agreed to step back from ministry while this is looked at. The cathedral community was informed on Sunday 14 April 2019 that the Dean has taken leave of absence for personal reasons. The reasons for the leave are different, but connected to one issue.”

A Church of England spokeswoman confirmed this week: “A non-recent safeguarding matter reported in the diocese of Lincoln is being investigated. All appropriate information has been passed on to the police and statutory authorities. Until their processes have been completed, nothing further can be said publicly.

”The National Safeguarding Team has convened a core group, and will continue to pursue all relevant matters.”

A statement from Lincolnshire Police said: “We have been made aware by the diocese of Lincoln of a non-recent allegation. We are not investigating this, as the alleged offence did not happen in Lincolnshire.”

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