Diocese of St Albans

Diocese of St Albans

Coordinates: 51°45′07″N 0°20′20″W / 51.752°N 0.339°W / 51.752; -0.339

Diocese of Saint Albans
Ecclesiastical province Canterbury
Archdeaconries Bedford, Hertford, St Albans
Parishes 335
Churches 411
Cathedral St Albans Cathedral
Current leadership
Bishop Dr Alan Smith, Bishop of St Albans
Suffragans Richard Inwood, Bishop of Bedford
Paul Bayes, Bishop of Hertford
Archdeacons Trevor Jones, Archdeacon of Hertford
Paul Hughes, Archdeacon of Bedford
Jonathan Smith, Archdeacon of St Albans

The Diocese of St Albans forms part of the Province of Canterbury in England and is part of the wider Church of England, in turn part of the worldwide Anglican Communion.

The diocese is home to more than 1.6 million people and comprises the historic Counties of Hertfordshire and Bedfordshire, or in terms of local government areas, Bedfordshire, Luton, Hertfordshire and parts of the London Borough of Barnet. It therefore ranges from small rural communities in villages and hamlets to major urban centres like Luton, Bedford, Watford and Hemel Hempstead, and includes suburban areas on London's outer reaches.



The new diocese was founded relatively recently by an Order in Council in April 1877, implementing the Bishopric of St. Albans Act 1875.

The diocese was established from parts of the large Diocese of Rochester, extending the new Bishop's jurisdiction over more than 600 parishes in the two counties of Essex and Hertfordshire.

The first bishop of St Albans was Thomas Legh Claughton, who served from 1877 to 1890.

The see is in the City of St Albans, where the cathedra (bishop's seat) is located in St Albans Cathedral. The cathedral building itself dates from 1077. It was an abbey church (part of St Albans Abbey) prior to its dissolution in 1539, and then a parish church (purchased by the town in 1553) until its elevation to cathedral status in 1877.

In 1914, the new diocese of Chelmsford was formed, removing Essex from the St Albans diocese. A few months later the county archdeaconry of Bedford was added from the diocese of Ely, thereby providing the diocese substantially with its current boundaries.

The suffragan Bishopric of Bedford was revived in 1879 and again in 1935, and another, Hertford was created in 1968.

Current geographical limits and structure

The diocese currently includes:

The Diocese is overseen by the Bishop of St Albans, whose 'cathedra' (or seat) is in St Albans Cathedral. He is supported in his pastoral work in the diocese by two suffragan bishops, the Bishops of Hertford and Bedford, and by three Archdeacons.

The diocese is divided into three Archdeaconries:

The Archdeaconry of Hertford was created in January 1997 from the eastern parts of the Archdeaconry of St Albans, which at the time was one of the largest archdeaconries in England.

The diocesan offices are located in Holywell Hill in St Albans.

See also


External links

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