Archdeacon of Lewisham to be Bishop of Thetford
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE 12 December 2000
Her Majesty the Queen has approved the appointment of The Venerable David Atkinson, Archdeacon of Lewisham, as Suffragan Bishop of Thetford in the Diocese of Norwich. Dr Atkinson will succeed the Rt. Revd Hugo de Waal who retired at the beginning of December.
Dr Atkinson (57) taught chemistry and religious studies before training for ordination. Following two curacies in Bolton and Birmingham, he worked at Latimer House - the theological research centre in Oxford. In 1980, he was appointed Chaplain and then Fellow and Lecturer in Theology at Corpus Christi College, Oxford. He became Canon Chancellor of Southwark Cathedral and Canon Missioner in the Diocese of Southwark in 1993 before being appointed Archdeacon of Lewisham in the same Diocese.
Commenting on his appointment, Dr Atkinson said, "I am very honoured and delighted to be invited by the Bishop of Norwich to join his staff team. With the recent Government Rural White Paper, this is an exciting moment to be exploring the role of the churches in relation to the regeneration of the countryside, and I will be wanting to discover how best I can play a helpful and supportive role in that task, as well, of course as recognising the significant populations there are in the towns of the Diocese of Norwich, and the particular pressures of urban regeneration which they face."
Introducing the Bishop-Designate of Thetford, the Bishop of Norwich, the Rt Revd Graham James said, "We have engaged in a vigorous consultation process over this appointment and I am delighted that David Atkinson is to be the next Bishop of Thetford. We look forward to welcoming him to the Diocese, confident that his gifts and abilities will complement and enrich our ministry to the people of Norfolk and Waveney."
Dr Atkinson is married to Dr Sue Atkinson - a former primary teacher, and now an education writer and lecturer in primary mathematics. They have a daughter and a son, Rachel and Jonathan. He enjoys art, music, walking and holidays with Sue in their VW Camper-van.
Dr Atkinson will be consecrated bishop by the Archbishop of Canterbury and other bishops at Southwark Cathedral on Thursday 5th April at 2.30pm.
The Bishop of Southwark, the Rt Rev Tom Butler, commented on the appointment: "I am delighted to hear of David Atkinson's appointment as Bishop of Thetford. I am of course sorry to lose his ministry here in Southwark but am very happy for the people of Norwich Diocese who will benefit from his wisdom and experience."
David Atkinson was born in 1943 and educated at Kings College, London. He graduated with a BSc in 1965. He completed a PhD in chemistry in 1969. He received an MLitt in Theology from Bristol in 1973. He trained for the priesthood at Trinity College, Bristol, and was ordained deacon in 1972. He was priested in 1973. He was curate in St Peter's, Halliwell, in the Diocese of Manchester, then moved to Birmingham to be senior curate of Harborne Heath.
In 1977 he took up an academic post in Oxford. He was appointed Chaplain of Corpus Christi College, Oxford in 1980 and was elected a Fellow of the College in 1984. He came to Southwark in 1993 as Canon Chancellor of Southwark Cathedral and Canon Missioner. In 1996 he was appointed Archdeacon of Lewisham.
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Last updated: 13/12/04