6th October 2023

Rural communities represented with appointment of new Canons

Rural communities represented with appointment of new Canons

At a time when the pressure on farmers and rural communities across Salisbury Diocese has never been higher, the Bishop of Salisbury, the Right Reverend Stephen Lake, has invited two canons with strong connections to rural areas to join Salisbury Cathedral’s College of Canons. They were admitted during Evensong on 5 October.

The Reverend David Bacon, Team Rector of the Forest and Avon team, has been admitted as a non-residentiary canon alongside The Reverend Richard Kirlew, who chairs the Agricultural Chaplains Association, a circle of Christian ministers working in rural communities.

The appointments reflect the need for the Church to address the concerns of its rural communities, which are often isolated and currently face great uncertainty post Brexit, with agricultural costs that have doubled since 2019 and anxiety about food security.

The Bishop of Salisbury, The Right Reverend Stephen Lake, said:
“There is important work to be done in our rural communities, with a recent report pinpointing poor mental health as the biggest hidden problem faced by farmers under 40. This makes the appointment of these two canons with their insights into the needs of rural communities an important and timely one.”

The Dean of Salisbury, The Very Reverend Nicholas Papadopulos, said:
“It is important the the College of Canons reflects all our communities, urban and rural, and given the current challenges faced by our farmers, it will be a good thing to have their voice heard here at the Cathedral and in the broader Church.”


L to R:  The Reverend David Bacon, The Bishop of Salisbury, The Dean of Salisbury and The Reverend Richard Kirlew

Photo: Finnbarr Webster