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Page last updated at 11:40 GMT, Wednesday, 7 July 2010 12:40 UK
New Hertford Bishop is Revd Canon Paul Bayes
Revd Canon Paul Bayes
The new Bishop of Hertford.

Ten Downing Street has announced the Revd Canon Paul Bayes will be the next Suffragan Bishop of Hertford in the Diocese of St Albans.

The 56 year old will assist the Bishop of St Albans, mainly focusing on the parishes and communities of Hertfordshire.

Paul's current role in the Church of England is the National Mission and Evangelism Advisor.

He will be ordained as Bishop on 21 September 2010 at St Paul's Cathedral.

Drama student

Paul succeeds the Rt Revd Christopher Foster who was appointed as the Bishop of Portsmouth.

Paul is married to Kate who is a drama teacher and Reader in the church, together they have three grown up children.

Paul who was born in Bradford in Yorkshire had intended to become a theatre director when he began his Drama Degree at Birmingham University.

However, during his time studying he had a series of 'encounters' which convinced him Christian ministry would be his future.

It's amazing and a slightly scary privilege to work with the team.
Paul Bayes

Paul was a curate for three years after being ordained in Newcastle Cathedral in 1979. He then moved to London and worked as a university Chaplain for five years.

He went back to parish life in High Wycombe for eight years and then to the New Forest for a further decade.

Paul admitted the new job was a bit daunting:

"It's an amazing and a slightly scary privilege to be invited to work with Bishop Alan and the team here as Bishop of Hertford.

"It'll be great to reconnect with the heart of the church, our local parish churches, schools and congregations."


In 2004 he began work in London as National Mission and Evangelism Advisor working with diocesan missioners and others to prove inspiration, encouragement and a 'can do' attitude to parishes of all traditions.

Paul said although he enjoyed this work he can not wait to get started in his new job:

"I have loved my present job working for the two Archbishops but it's the priests and people working together in parishes who do the top jobs in the Church. I know the Archbishops would agree with that.

"So my first priority will be to get to know the clergy and the churches of Hertfordshire and find out how I can serve and help them as they do the work that really matters in our communities."

Paul has been the driving force behind the Church of England's Wedding Project promoting weddings in church as a positive choice for couples.

The announcement was made on 7 July 2010 at the Watford Harlequin shopping centre.

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