Comments: Dean of Peterborough

As a former curate of Boston (1977-1980), long before Christopher Dalliston was there, may I wish the Dean well in his new ministry as he returns from the far North to the beautiful Fens.

Posted by Father David at Wednesday, 1 November 2017 at 3:32pm GMT

A good man and an superb administrator. Obviously Newcastle's loss/Peterborough's gain, etc, but Chris is someone who will, in a very pleasant and courteous way, "sort things out", and also someone who will leave a real and sustainable legacy.

I wish his family well too. It mentions in passing that his wife is ordained. Michelle is a wonderful priest.

Posted by ExRevd at Wednesday, 1 November 2017 at 9:55pm GMT

I'm waiting for the announcement of the next Dean or Bishop to say 's/he hates football'.

Posted by David Emmott at Wednesday, 1 November 2017 at 10:29pm GMT

Surely David - a far more important qualification for a male ordinand in the C.of E. is to love cricket?

Posted by Father Ron Smith at Wednesday, 1 November 2017 at 10:55pm GMT

There are limits to what even the Church of England can tolerate, David Emmott.

Posted by rjb at Thursday, 2 November 2017 at 12:26am GMT


Do you think that's the reason why I've never been offered a Deanery or a Bishoprick? Personally, I can think of other reasons!

Posted by Father David at Thursday, 2 November 2017 at 6:08am GMT

I agree, Chris Dalliston is a very good thing indeed. It is interesting that, after Tim Sledge withdrew his acceptance (and he - and his health - remains the focus of many of our prayers), they obviously decided not to go back to the original shortlist and applicants (a fair few of us know who applied because, when the C of E IT bods reconfigured data storage several months ago, part of the collateral damage was the appearance of the applications for the Deanery of Peterborough for a brief while until someone raised the alarm). It is reassuring for many of us that Peterborough gains a 'Proper Dean' who is experienced and from the catholic tradition, and who cannot be said to be a chip off the Welby block.

Posted by Peter Norris at Thursday, 2 November 2017 at 12:03pm GMT

Football and music/poetry. Obviously hedging bets—the way to get on both bishop and dean shortlists.

When will it get through to communications officers and candidates themselves that personal interests are usually irrelevant and that football, in particular, evokes negative as well as positive feelings.

Personally I prefer opera.

Posted by Bernard at Thursday, 2 November 2017 at 1:02pm GMT

I agree re. opera - but that would be far too high brow to be admitted into the ranks of the ecclesiastical great and the good. They need to shew their street cred wiv the Yoof and attract them to cathedral Raves in the Naves. Hence the obligatory declared support for some Football team or other.

Posted by Father David at Friday, 3 November 2017 at 8:35am GMT

We are both relieved and delighted here in Peterborough. Not only was Dean Charles Taylor a grievous loss to us, as a man of humanity, holiness and humour (apologies for the weak alliteration!); but we have lost two very experienced and highly regarded residentiary canons over the summer. To have a new Dean who is not an icon of the 'corporate' image of the C of E is very welcome. We have no doubt about the scale of the task that now faces him, as he seeks to recruit new Chapter colleagues, but we have high hopes that he will be a healing, as well as challenging, presence in the Cathedral. Congratulations, too, to Bishop Donald for exercising far-sighted generosity, and for not being pushed into appointing a monosyllabically-named evangelical fresh from the talent pool. This is a confidence-boosting appointment and will reap dividends for the future.

Posted by Graham Steel at Friday, 3 November 2017 at 11:37am GMT

Should have mentioned his love of hill walking; a strange omission in these strange times. Or is love of hill walking just a bishop thing?

Posted by Andrew Lightbown at Friday, 3 November 2017 at 11:52am GMT

Hill walking is definitely on the Bishop template.

Posted by Bernard at Friday, 3 November 2017 at 3:04pm GMT

What happened to a love of trains in general and steam locomotives in particular? It used to be an essential part of the prelate/minor prelate DNA. Things just aren't what they used to be.

Posted by Disgraced at Friday, 3 November 2017 at 7:01pm GMT

Hillwalking is not really very practical in the Fens.

Posted by T Pott at Friday, 3 November 2017 at 10:17pm GMT

When I'm asked to write a paragraph about myself for some diocesan committee or other, I always include the fact that I'm a folk musician and can be seen regularly around the coffee shops of Edmonton playing traditional folk songs. Why? Because I want people to know that I have a life outside my priesthood. If they're smart, they'll realize that makes me a better priest (not better than others, but better than I would be if I did nothing else).

I'm always glad to see what these bishops' interests are. It makes them more human to me. And I hope they stick with them. I once knew a bishop who admitted to a love of riding when younger, but claimed there was no longer time for it. Personally, I thought that bishop should have made time for it, and told people they were unavailable during that time. No one is called to be God except God.

Posted by Tim Chesterton at Saturday, 4 November 2017 at 3:57pm GMT

'They need to shew their street cred wiv the Yoof and attract them to cathedral Raves in the Naves. Hence the obligatory declared support for some Football team or other.'

You seem to have a rather high degree of omniscience about the motivations of people's hearts, Father David. Perhaps they're actually telling the truth about their favourite football team, for no other reason than that they like them? Suspiciously innocent, I know, but there it is!

By the way, I'm glad you find the Essex accent amusing. Speaking for myself, when I lived in deepest Essex as a teenager I found BBC accents unbearably toffee-nosed, so I guess we're even.

Posted by Tim Chesterton at Saturday, 4 November 2017 at 4:06pm GMT

Surely Mr. Chesterton, omniscience belongs to God alone? I hadn't personally made any connection with what you describe as "the Essex accent" nor indeed that we were having any kind of competition with regard to accents?
All I can say is that having in the past ministered in Essex for a decade I have a high regard and deep affection for the people of Essex and their irrepressible sense of humour. Alas, some people seem to have had a sense of humour by-pass.
Speaking of which, I'm sure that you know about the girl from Colchester who unfortunately had a motor accident on the notorious A 12? The concerned policeman who attended the accident asked "Where are you bleeding from?" only to receive the reply "I'm from bleedin' Essex, where do you think I'm bleedin' from?"
Although it's a little early, may I be the first, as our own dear queen might have said in the 1950s, to wish you and yours
"A vaairy Hippy Christmas"

Posted by Father David at Sunday, 5 November 2017 at 7:15am GMT
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