The Right Reverend

Alwyn Williams
Bishop of Winchester
ChurchChurch of England
In office1952–1961
PredecessorMervyn Haigh
SuccessorFalkner Allison
Other post(s)Headmaster of Winchester College (1924–1934)
Dean of Christ Church (1934–1939)
Bishop of Durham (1939–1952)
Ordination21 December 1913 (deacon); 20 December 1914 (priest)
by Charles Gore, Bishop of Oxford
Consecration25 March 1939
by William Temple, Archbishop of York
Personal details
Born(1888-07-20)20 July 1888
Died18 February 1968(1968-02-18) (aged 79)
Charmouth, Dorset, England
BuriedWinchester Cathedral
ParentsJohn Williams & Adeline née Peter
SpouseMargaret née Stewart (m. 1914; she d. 1958)
Professioncleric, headteacher
Alma materJesus College, Oxford

Alwyn Terrell Petre Williams (20 July 1888 – 18 February 1968)[1] was Bishop of Durham (1939–1952)[2] and then Bishop of Winchester (1952–1961).[3]

Family and education

Born the eldest son of John (a physician) and Adeline (née Peter) Williams, at Barrow-in-Furness, Lancashire,[4] he was educated at Rossall School and then went up to Jesus College, Oxford, where he had a remarkable career. He was a Scholar of his college and took a Triple First in Classical Moderations (1908), Greats (1910), and Modern History (1911), having won the Gladstone Historical Essay in 1909. He was elected a Fellow of All Souls College, Oxford, for the period 1911–1918. Williams married Margaret, née Stewart, of Perthshire,[1] on 23 August 1914; they had no children, and she died in 1958.[4]


He was ordained deacon on St Thomas's day (21 December) 1913[5] and priest on 20 December 1914[6]—both times by Charles Gore, Bishop of Oxford, at Christ Church Cathedral, Oxford[5][6]—and soon moved to Winchester College, where he was Assistant Master (1915–1916), Second Master (1916–1924), and Headmaster (1924–1934), having meanwhile been appointed an Honorary Canon of Winchester Cathedral in 1928 and Chaplain to George V in 1931, both of which he gave up in 1934, when he was appointed Dean of Christ Church.[1]

He remained there until 1939, when he was appointed to the episcopate, first as Bishop of Durham (1939–1952) and then as Bishop of Winchester and Prelate to the Order of the Garter (1952–1961).[1] He was ordained (consecrated) a bishop on Lady Day (25 March) 1939, by William Temple, Archbishop of York, in York Minster;[7] his nomination to Winchester was announced on 14 March 1952.[8] He was also the Chairman of the committee that eventually produced the New English Bible (1950–1961).[1] An unobtrusive but much respected cleric,[9] he retired to Charmouth, Dorset, and died at home there seven years later,[10] his funeral service being at Winchester Cathedral.[11] He had become a Doctor of Divinity (DD) several times over—from Oxford in 1925, Durham and St Andrews in 1939, and Glasgow in 1951—and a Doctor of Letters (DLitt) from Southampton in 1962.[1]


  1. ^ a b c d e f "Williams, Alwyn Terrell Petre". Who's Who. Vol. 1920–2016 (April 2014 online ed.). A & C Black, an imprint of Bloomsbury Publishing plc. Retrieved 8 January 2017. (Subscription or UK public library membership required.)
  2. ^ The Times, Monday, 6 February 1939; p. 15; Issue 48222; col G Ecclesiastical News The New Bishop of Durham
  3. ^ The Times, Saturday, 28 January 1961; p. 6; Issue 54991; col E Bishop To Resign Dr. Williams Leaving Winchester
  4. ^ a b "Williams, Alwyn Terrell Petre". Oxford Dictionary of National Biography (online ed.). Oxford University Press. doi:10.1093/ref:odnb/36914. (Subscription or UK public library membership required.)
  5. ^ a b "The Advent Ordinations". Church Times. No. 2657. 24 December 1913. p. 896. ISSN 0009-658X. Retrieved 10 January 2017 – via UK Press Online archives.
  6. ^ a b "Advent Ordinations". Church Times. No. 2709. 24 December 1914. p. 668. ISSN 0009-658X. Retrieved 10 January 2017 – via UK Press Online archives.
  7. ^ "The Bishop of Durham's consecration". Church Times. No. 3975. 31 March 1939. p. 338. ISSN 0009-658X. Retrieved 10 January 2017 – via UK Press Online archives.
  8. ^ "Bishopric of Winchester – Dr. Williams nominated". Church Times. No. 4649. 14 March 1952. p. 181. ISSN 0009-658X. Retrieved 13 January 2017 – via UK Press Online archives.
  9. ^ A. T. P. Williams Former Bishop of Winchester (Obituaries) The Times Tuesday, 20 February 1968; p. 10; Issue 57180; col E
  10. ^ "in memoriam — Bishop Alwyn Williams: Durham & Winchester". Church Times. No. 5480. 23 February 1968. p. 15. ISSN 0009-658X. Retrieved 13 January 2017 – via UK Press Online archives.
  11. ^ The Times, Friday, 23 February 1968; p. 10; Issue 57183; col D
Academic offices Preceded byMontague Rendall Headmaster of Winchester College 1924–1934 Succeeded bySpencer Leeson Church of England titles Preceded byHensley Henson Bishop of Durham 1939–1952 Succeeded byMichael Ramsey Preceded byMervyn Haigh Bishop of Winchester 1952–1961 Succeeded byFalkner Allison Professional and academic associations Preceded byHensley Henson President of the Surtees Society 1945–52 Succeeded byFrederick Maurice Powicke