Page last updated at 12:51 GMT, Wednesday, 28 April 2010 13:51 UK

Inquiry after affair claim against Truro Cathedral dean

Very Reverend Dr Christopher Hardwick
Dr Hardwick is still officially in his post

An internal inquiry is being held after allegations that the dean of Truro Cathedral has been having an affair, the Diocese of Truro has confirmed.

The diocese said it was alerted to allegations against the Very Reverend Dr Christopher Hardwick at the weekend.

Dr Hardwick, who is married, had been seeing a woman going through a divorce as part of his pastoral counselling service, the diocese said.

He is not participating in services for the foreseeable future.

'Emotionally charged'

Although officially still in his post, the diocese said Dr Hardwick was taking a break from his duties "to resolve personal issues relating to his marriage".

The Bishop of Truro, Tim Thornton, has started the inquiry to establish if there are grounds for a more formal disciplinary process.

The diocese said: "The break-up of any marriage is a sensitive matter, often emotionally charged, and may involve people beyond the immediate family."

It added: "As a caring organisation, the diocese has pastoral procedures that are implemented in the event that the marriage of any priest runs into difficulties.

"These have been made available to all the individuals involved in the present situation."

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