kids encyclopedia robot

Diocese of Norwich facts for kids

Kids Encyclopedia Facts
Quick facts for kids
Diocese of Norwich
Dioecesis Norvicensis
Coat of arms of the Diocese of Norwich
Coat of arms
Ecclesiastical province Canterbury
Archdeaconries Lynn, Norfolk, Norwich
Parishes 563
Churches 656
Cathedral Norwich Cathedral
Language English
Current leadership
Bishop Graham Usher, Bishop of Norwich
Suffragans Alan Winton, Bishop of Thetford
Jane Steen, Bishop of Lynn
Archdeacons Steven Betts, Archdeacon of Norfolk
Ian Bentley, Archdeacon of Lynn
Archdeacon of Norwich (vacant)

The Diocese of Norwich is an ecclesiastical jurisdiction or diocese of the Church of England that forms part of the Province of Canterbury in England.


It traces its roots in an unbroken line to the diocese of the Bishop of the East Angles founded in 630. In common with many Anglo-Saxon bishoprics it moved, in this case to Elmham in 673. After the Norman invasion it moved to Thetford in 1070 finally moving to Norwich in 1094.

It covers 573 parishes with 656 churches covering all of the county of Norfolk save for the extreme west beyond the River Great Ouse that is part of the diocese of Ely. It includes the deanery of Lothingland (the port of Lowestoft and its immediate hinterland) in the county of Suffolk. This totals an area over 1,800 square miles (4,700 km2) with a population (2008) of some 867,000.

Like most older dioceses, the territory has been gradually reduced. Until the formation of the Diocese of St Edmundsbury and Ipswich in 1914, East Suffolk was included, and earlier other areas.



The Bishop of Norwich (Graham James) leads the diocese and is assisted by two suffragan bishops, the bishop of Thetford (Alan Winton) and the bishop of Lynn (Jonathan Meyrick). The suffragan sees of Ipswich and of Thetford were both created by the Suffragan Bishops Act 1534 but went into abeyance after one incumbent; Thetford was next filled in 1894 and Ipswich in 1899. The See of Ipswich has been in abeyance since before the diocesan see including that city's name was created; a new second suffragan see – of Lynn – was therefore founded in 1963.

Alternative episcopal oversight (for parishes in the diocese which do not accept the ordination of women as priests) is provided by the provincial episcopal visitor, Norman Banks, Bishop suffragan of Richborough, who is licensed as an honorary assistant bishop of the diocese in order to facilitate his ministry. There are also seven retired bishops living in the diocese who are licensed as honorary assistant bishops:

  • 2000–present: Malcolm Menin, retired Bishop suffragan of Knaresborough, lives in Lakenham.
  • 2001–present: Richard Garrard, retired Director of the Anglican Centre in Rome & Archbishop's Representative to the Holy See and former Bishop of Penrith, lives in Upper Stoke and is also licensed in the Diocese in Europe.
  • 2003–present: David Leake, retired Bishop of Argentina and former Presiding Bishop in the Southern Cone, lives in East Runton.
  • 2004–present: Tony Foottit, retired Bishop suffragan of Lynn, lives in Reepham.
  • 2006–present: Peter Fox, former Bishop of Port Moresby, Papua New Guinea is Vicar of the Lakenham Group.
  • 2008–present: David Gillett, retired Bishop suffragan of Bolton, lives in Diss.
  • 2009–present: Lindsay Urwin, Administrator of the Shrine of Our Lady of Walsingham, is a former area Bishop of Horsham. He is also licensed in Ely, Peterborough and Chichester dioceses.


The diocese is divided into 21 deaneries:

kids search engine
Diocese of Norwich Facts for Kids. Kiddle Encyclopedia.