Bishop of Worcester
Coat of arms of the (({name))}
Arms of the Bishop of Worcester: Argent, ten torteaux gules, four, three, two and one[1]
John Inge
Ecclesiastical provinceCanterbury
ResidenceThe Old Palace, Worcester
First holderBosel
CathedralWorcester Cathedral

The Bishop of Worcester is the head of the Church of England Diocese of Worcester in the Province of Canterbury, England.

The title can be traced back to the foundation of the diocese in the year 680.[2][3] From then until the 16th century, the bishops were in full communion with the Roman Catholic Church. During the Reformation, the church in England broke away from the authority of the Pope and the Roman Catholic Church, at first temporarily and later more permanently. Since the Reformation, the Bishop and Diocese of Worcester has been part of the Church of England and the Anglican Communion.

The diocese covers most of the county of Worcestershire, including the Lordship of Saxons Lode, the Metropolitan Borough of Dudley and parts of the City of Wolverhampton.[4] The Episcopal see is in the city of Worcester where the bishop's throne is located at the Cathedral Church of Christ and the Blessed Virgin Mary.[5] The bishop's official residence is the Old Palace, Worcester.[6] The bishops had two residences outside the city: Hartlebury Castle near Kidderminster from the 13th century to 2007 and a palace at Alvechurch until it was pulled down in the 17th century.

From the elevations of Oswald of Worcester in 961 at Worcester and 972 at York, until 1023 the see was usually held jointly with the (then rather poorer) Archbishopric of York.

The current bishop of Worcester is John Inge.

List of bishops


Bishops of Worcester
From Until Incumbent Notes
680 691 Bosel Resigned the See
691 693 Oftfor
693 717 Ecgwine of Evesham Also recorded as Ecgwin, Egwin and Eegwine
718 c.744 Wilfrith (I.) Also recorded as Wilfrid
c.743 c.775 Milred Also recorded as Mildred and Hildred
775 777 Waermund Also recorded as Wærmund
777 c.780/81 Tilhere
781 c.799 Heathured Also recorded as Hathored, AEthelred and Æthelred
c.799 822 Denebeorht Also recorded as Deneberht
822 c.845/48 Heahbeorht Also recorded as Heahberht and Eadbert
c.845/48 872 Ealhhun Also recorded as Alwin
873 915 Werferth Also recorded as Waerfrith, Wærferth, Werfrith and Waerfrith
915 922 Æthelhun
922 929 Wilfrith (II.)
fl.929 957 Koenwald Also recorded as Cenwald and Coenwald
957 959 Dunstan Previously Abbot of Glastonbury; translated to London; and later to Canterbury
961 992 Oswald Held both Worcester and York ( 971–992)
992 1002 Ealdwulf Previously Abbot of Peterborough; held both Worcester and York (995–1002)
1002 1016 Wulfstan (I.) Translated from London; also Archbishop of York (1002–1023)
1016 1033 Leofsige
1033 1038 Beorhtheah
c. 1038/39 1040 Lyfing (1st term) Deprived from Worcester; also Bishop of Crediton and Cornwall (1027–1046)
1040 1041 Ælfric Puttoc Also Archbishop of York, 1023–1041; deprived from both
1041 1046 Lyfing (2nd term) Restored to Worcester
1046 1061 Ealdred Translated from Hereford; later to York
1062 1095 Wulfstan (II.) Canonized on 14 May 1203 by Pope Innocent III

Conquest to Reformation

Bishops of Worcester
From Until Incumbent Notes
1096 1112 Samson
1113 1123 Theulf Nominated in 1113; consecrated in 1115
1125 1150 Simon
1151 1157 John de Pageham
1158 1160 Alured
1163 1179 Roger Also recorded as Roger of Gloucester
1180 1185 Baldwin Translated to Canterbury
1185 1190 William of Northall
1191 1193 Robert FitzRalph Previously Archdeacon of Nottingham
1193 1195 Henry de Sully Previously Abbot of Glastonbury Abbey
1196 1198 John of Coutances
1199 1212 Mauger Elected in 1199, but quashed by Pope Innocent III; later postulated to the See; consecrated in 1200
1213 1214 Randulf of Evesham (bishop-elect) Elected in December 1213, but quashed by the Papal legate, Niccolò de Romanis, in January 1214
1214 1216 Walter de Gray Translated to York
1216 1218 Sylvester Also recorded as Sylvester of Evesham
1218 1236 William de Blois
1237 1266 Walter de Cantilupe
1266 1268 Nicholas of Ely Formerly Archdeacon of Ely;translated to Winchester
1268 1302 Godfrey Giffard
1302 John St German (bishop-elect) Elected in March 1302, but quashed in October 1302
1302 1307 William Gainsborough
1307 1313 Walter Reynolds Translated to Canterbury
1313 1317 Walter Maidstone
1317 1327 Thomas Cobham Previously Archbishop-elect of Canterbury in 1313
1327 Wulstan Bransford (bishop-elect) Elected bishop but was quashed; later elected in 1339
1327 1333 Adam Orleton Translated from Hereford; later to Winchester
1333 1337 Simon Montacute Translated to Ely
1337 1338 Thomas Hemenhale Translated from Norwich
1339 1349 Wulstan Bransford
1349 1353 John of Thoresby Translated from St David's; later to York
1352 1361 Reginald Brian Translated from St David's
1362 1363 John Barnet Translated to Bath and Wells; and later to Ely
1363 1368 William Whittlesey Translated from Rochester; later to Canterbury
1368 1373 William Lenn Translated from Chichester
1373 1375 Walter Lyghe (bishop-elect) Elected in 1373, but quashed in 1375
1375 1395 Henry Wakefield
1394 1401 Robert Tideman of Winchcombe Translated from Llandaff
1401 1407 Richard Clifford Previously Bishop-elect of Bath and Wells; later translated to London
1407 1419 Thomas Peverel Translated from Llandaff
1419 1426 Philip Morgan Translated to Ely
1425 1433 Thomas Poulton Translated from Chichester
1433 1435 Thomas Brunce (bishop-elect) Elected bishop, but never consecrated; later became Bishop of Rochester
1434 1443 Thomas Bourchier Translated to Ely; and later to Canterbury
1443 1476 John Carpenter Nominated in 1443; consecrated in 1444; resigned the See in 1476; apparently used the style "Bishop of Worcester and Westbury"[9][10]
1476 1486 John Alcock Translated from Rochester; later to Ely
1486 1497 Robert Morton Nominated in 1486; consecrated in 1487
1497 1498 Giovanni de' Gigli
1498 1521 Silvestro de' Gigli
1521 1522 Giulio di Giuliano de' Medici (apostolic administrator) Appointed apostolic administrator of the See of Worcester in 1521 and resigned in 1522; also Archbishop of Florence and Narbonne and Bishop of Eger; he was elected as Pope Clement VII in 1523.[11]
1522 1535 Girolamo Ghinucci Deprived of the See by Henry VIII when the king broke with Rome; later in 1535 Ghinucci was created a cardinal.[12]

During the Reformation

Bishops of Worcester
From Until Incumbent Notes
1535 1539
Hugh Latimer from NPG.jpg
Hugh Latimer
Resigned the See
1539 1543
No image.svg
John Bell
1543 1551
Nicholas Heath by Hans Eworth.jpg
Nicholas Heath (1st term)
Translated from Rochester; deprived of the See
1552 1554
John Hooper by Henry Bryan Hall after James Warren Childe cropped.jpg
John Hooper
Translated from Gloucester, 20 May 1552 when Gloucester was reunited to Worcester; called "Bishop of Worcester and Gloucester" and "of Gloucester and Worcester"; deprived of the See.[16][17][18][19]
1554 1555
Nicholas Heath by Hans Eworth.jpg
Nicholas Heath (2nd term)
Restored to the See; later translated to York
1555 1559
No image.svg
Richard Pate
Deprived of the See.


Bishops of Worcester
From Until Incumbent Notes
1559 1570
Edwin Sandys from NPG.jpg
Edwin Sandys
Translated to London; and later to York
1570 (designate)
No image.svg
James Calfhill
Archdeacon of Colchester (1565–1570). Allegedly nominated by Queen Elizabeth I, but died before election.
1571 1576
No image.svg
Nicholas Bullingham
Translated from Lincoln
1577 1583
Bp John Whitgift.jpg
John Whitgift
Translated to Canterbury
1584 1591
No image.svg
Edmund Freke
Translated from Norwich
1593 1595
No image.svg
Richard Fletcher
Translated from Bristol; later to London
1596 1597
Bp Thomas Bilson.jpg
Thomas Bilson
Translated to Winchester
1597 1610
Bishop Gervase Babington by Simon De Passe.jpg
Gervase Babington
Translated from Exeter
1610 1616
Marcus Gheeraerts I (Attr) - Portrait of Henry Parry, Bishop of Worcester.jpeg
Henry Parry
Translated from Gloucester
1617 1641
John Thornborough from NPG (crop).jpg
John Thornborough
Translated from Bristol
1641 1646
John Prideaux
Deprived of the see when the English episcopacy was abolished by Parliament on 9 October 1646.
1646 1660 The see was abolished during the Commonwealth and the Protectorate.[22][23]
1660 1662
George Morley
Translated to Winchester
John Gauden
Translated from Exeter
1662 1663
John Earle from NPG.jpg
John Earle
Translated to Salisbury
1663 1670
No image.svg
Robert Skinner
Translated from Bristol
1671 1675
Bp Walter Blandford.jpg
Walter Blandford
Translated from Oxford
1675 1683
No image.svg
James Fleetwood
1683 1689
No image.svg
William Thomas
Translated from St David's
1689 1699
Edward Stillingfleet by Mary Beale.jpg
Edward Stillingfleet
1699 1717
William Lloyd
Translated from Lichfield and Coventry
1717 1743
John Hough portrait.jpg
John Hough
Translated from Lichfield and Coventry
1743 1759
No image.svg
Isaac Maddox
Translated from St Asaph
1759 1774
Bp James Johnson, Hartlebury.jpg
James Johnson
Translated from Gloucester
1774 1781
Bp Brownlow North by Henry Howard.jpg
Brownlow North
Translated from Lichfield and Coventry; later to Winchester
1781 1808
Richard Hurd
Translated from Lichfield and Coventry
1808 1831
Folliott Herbert Walker Cornewall by William Owen.jpg
Folliott Cornewall
Translated from Hereford
1831 1841
Robert James Carr.jpg
Robert Carr
Translated from Chichester
1841 1860
Henry Pepys NGS.jpg
Henry Pepys
Translated from Sodor and Man
1861 1890
Henry Philpott.jpg
Henry Philpott
1890 1901
Bp John Perowne.jpg
John Perowne
1902 1905
Charles Gore NPG.jpg
Charles Gore[24]
Translated to Birmingham; and later to Oxford
1905 1918
Huyshe Yeatman-Biggs
Translated from Southwark; later to Coventry
1919 1931
No image.svg
Ernest Pearce
1931 1941
No image.svg
Arthur Perowne
Translated to Bradford
1941 1956
No image.svg
William Wilson Cash
1956 1971
No image.svg
Mervyn Charles-Edwards
1971 1982
No image.svg
Robin Woods
1982 1996
No image.svg
Philip Goodrich [25]
Previously Bishop of Tonbridge (1973–1982)
1997 2007
No image.svg
Peter Selby
Previously Bishop of Kingston-upon-Thames (1984–1992). Also Bishop to HM Prisons (2001–2007)
2007 (acting) David Walker
Bishop of Dudley
Episcopal commissary (acting diocesan bishop) during interregnum.[26]
2007 incumbent
Official portrait of The Lord Bishop of Worcester crop 2.jpg
John Inge

Assistant bishops

Among those who have served as assistant bishops of the diocese are:



  1. ^ Debrett's Peerage, 1968, p.1167
  2. ^ Fryde et al. 1986, Handbook of British Chronology, p. 223.
  3. ^ a b c d Herbermann, Charles, ed. (1913). "Ancient Diocese of Worcester". Catholic Encyclopedia. New York: Robert Appleton Company.
  4. ^ Diocese of Worcester: Homepage. Retrieved on 10 December 2008.
  5. ^ Worcester Cathedral: Homepage. Retrieved on 10 December 2008.
  6. ^ Provincial Directory: Worcester. Anglican Communion. Retrieved on 10 December 2008.
  7. ^ a b c d "Historical successions: Worcester". Crockford's Clerical Directory. Retrieved 14 July 2012.
  8. ^ Fryde et al. 1986, Handbook of British Chronology, pp. 223–224, and 278.
  9. ^ Oxford DNB – Carpenter, John (Accessed 20 February 2014)
  10. ^ A History of the County of Gloucester: Volume 2. College: The College of Westbury-on-Trym (Accessed 20 February 2014)
  11. ^ Cardinal Giulio de' Medici. The Cardinals of the Holy Roman Church. Retrieved on 10 December 2008.
  12. ^ Cardinal Girolamo Ghinucci. The Cardinals of the Holy Roman Church. Retrieved on 10 December 2008.
  13. ^ Fryde et al. 1986, Handbook of British Chronology, pp. 278–280.
  14. ^ Greenway 1971, "Bishops of Worcester", Fasti Ecclesiae Anglicanae 1066–1300: Volume 2, pp. 99–102.
  15. ^ a b Jones 1962, "Bishops of Worcester", Fasti Ecclesiae Anglicanae 1300–1541: Volume 4, pp. 55–58.
  16. ^ Fasti Ecclesiae Anglicanae 1541–1857, vol. 7, 1992, pp. 105–109
  17. ^ "Hooper, John". Oxford Dictionary of National Biography (online ed.). Oxford University Press. doi:10.1093/ref:odnb/13706. (Subscription or UK public library membership required.)
  18. ^ Pollard, Albert Frederick (1911). "Hooper, John" . In Chisholm, Hugh (ed.). Encyclopædia Britannica. Vol. 13 (11th ed.). Cambridge University Press. pp. 675–676.
  19. ^ Lee, Sidney, ed. (1891). "Hooper, John" . Dictionary of National Biography. Vol. 27. London: Smith, Elder & Co.
  20. ^ Fryde et al. 1986, Handbook of British Chronology, p. 280.
  21. ^ a b Horn 1996, "Bishops of Worcester", Fasti Ecclesiae Anglicanae 1541–1857: Volume 7, pp. 105–109.
  22. ^ Episcopacy. British Civil Wars, Commonwealth and Protectorate 1638–60. Retrieved on 25 April 2021.
  23. ^ King, Peter (July 1968). "The Episcopate during the Civil Wars, 1642–1649". The English Historical Review. Oxford University Press. 83 (328): 523–537. doi:10.1093/ehr/lxxxiii.cccxxviii.523. JSTOR 564164.
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  31. ^ "Allenby, David Howard Nicholas". Who's Who. A & C Black, an imprint of Bloomsbury Publishing plc. (Subscription or UK public library membership required.)
  32. ^ "Woollcombes to leave London". Church Times. No. 6584. 21 April 1989. p. 3. ISSN 0009-658X. Retrieved 15 February 2021 – via UK Press Online archives.