The Bishop of Marlborough was an episcopal title used by a Church of England suffragan bishop, firstly in the 16th century for the Diocese of Salisbury, and secondly in the late 19th and early 20th century for the Diocese of London.[1][2]

The title takes its name after the town of Marlborough, Wiltshire and was first created under the Suffragan Bishops Act 1534. After the 1560s, the title fell into abeyance until it was revived in 1888, at the suggestion of the then Bishop of London,[3] to assist in the running of the rapidly expanding Diocese of London.[4]

List of bishops of Marlborough

Bishops of Marlborough
From Until Incumbent Notes
1537 ? 1561 Thomas Morley Also recorded as Thomas Calne and Thomas Bickley. Formerly Abbot of Stanley;[5][6] consecrated on 4 November 1537; possibly died in 1561;[7]
fl. 1560s Thomas Lancaster [8] Formerly Bishop of Kildare; acted as suffragan bishop of Marlborough in the 1560s; later became Archbishop of Armagh in 1568.
unknown 1888 in abeyance
1888 1918 Alfred Earle[9] He was simultaneously Rector of St Botolph's, Bishopsgate;[10] c. 1897–1900, he was assisted by Alfred Barry, Rector of St James's, Piccadilly; Earle retained the See of Marlborough after he was appointed Dean of Exeter in 1900,[11] while Barry took on Marlborough's former care of West London[12] (the rural deaneries of Westminster, Hampton, and Uxbridge, which in 1903 were given over to the Bishop of Kensington)[13]
1919 present in abeyance; effectively succeeded as suffragan for West London by the Bishops of Kensington


  1. ^ a b Crockford's Clerical Directory (100th ed.). London: Church House Publishing. 2007. p. 947. ISBN 978-0-7151-1030-0.
  2. ^ National archive data
  3. ^ "It was Bishop Temple who obtained the Suffragan for West London, bringing up his old friend Archdeacon Earle from Devonshire, with the titular designation of Bishop of Marlborough" Papers pertaining to the Archdeacons of London
  4. ^ Materials within The National Archive
  5. ^ The Abbey of Stanley. British History Online. Retrieved 1 January 2009.
  6. ^ Cistercian Abbeys: Stanley. Retrieved 1 January 2009.
  7. ^ Fryde, E. B.; Greenway, D. E.; Porter, S.; Roy, I. (1986). Handbook of British Chronology (Third Edition, revised ed.). Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. p. 288. ISBN 0-521-56350-X.
  8. ^ Lancaster, Thomas (d.1583) in the Dictionary of National Biography (1885–1900), a publication now in the public domain.
  9. ^ Papers of Alfred Earle
  10. ^ London, Bankside Press, 2003 ISBN 0-9545705-0-2
  11. ^ Deans of Exeter Archived January 29, 2009, at the Wayback Machine. Retrieved 1 January 2009.
  12. ^ "Church news". Church Times. No. 1951. 15 June 1900. p. 690. ISSN 0009-658X. Retrieved 19 September 2020 – via UK Press Online archives.
  13. ^ "Church news". Church Times. No. 2089. 6 February 1903. p. 170. ISSN 0009-658X. Retrieved 19 September 2020 – via UK Press Online archives.