THE King has approved the nomination of the Bishop of Coventry, Dr Christopher Cocksworth, as the next Dean of Windsor, Downing Street announced on Tuesday.
Dr Cocksworth will succeed the Rt Revd David Conner in early November. Bishop Connor is due to retire at the end of July, after 25 years in office.
As Dean, Bishop Conner, with the Archbishop of Canterbury, officiated at the funeral of the late Duke of Edinburgh, in 2021 (News, 17 April 2021). He also gave the short address at the thanksgiving service in Westminster Abbey (News, 1 April 2022). At the late Queen’s funeral last September, he delivered the bidding and words of committal in St George’s Chapel, Windsor (News, 23 September 2022).
In a message published on the Coventry diocesan website, Dr Cocksworth writes: “It is a great honour to have been appointed to take on this ministry with the particular responsibilities it brings, and I am very grateful to His Majesty for the opportunity.”
He had not been expecting to leave the diocese until his retirement, he writes. “The people of Coventry, Warwickshire and our slice of Solihull, together with all our church communities, church schools, chaplaincies, our remarkable cathedral and all our partnerships with so many other churches, charities, faith communities and organisations, will always remain in my heart.”
Dr Cocksworth became the Bishop of Coventry in 2008, after seven years as Principal of Ridley Hall, Cambridge. From 1997 to 2001, he was director of the Southern Theological Education and Training Scheme, and before that was, for five years, a chaplain of Royal Holloway, University of London. He was ordained deacon in 1988, and ordained priest in 1989. He served his title at Christ Church, Epsom Common, in Guildford diocese.
From 1999 to 2006, Dr Cocksworth served on the Liturgical Commission. He chaired the Living in Love and Faith co-ordinating group. He has been a member of the Lords Spiritual since 2013, and will no longer have a seat in the House of Lords when he leaves Coventry.