Bristol’s Bishop’s Chaplain appointed new Bishop of Kingston

First published 15th December 2022

The Revd Canon Dr Martin Gainsborough, Chaplain to the Bishop of Bristol, has been appointed as the next Bishop of Kingston in the Diocese of Southwark.

Martin grew up in the Diocese of Southwark. After university in Bristol, he undertook graduate study at the School of Oriental and African Studies in London where he completed his doctorate in 2001. Martin has worked in the Diocese of Bristol since his ordination in 2010, serving the parish of Barton Hill and becoming its Priest in Charge in 2013.

He joined the staff of Bristol Cathedral in 2016 and became Chaplain to the Bishop of Bristol, the Rt Revd Vivienne Faull in 2019. Prior to working for the Bishop of Bristol, Martin held the post of Professor of Development Politics at the University of Bristol.

Following today’s announcement, Martin now takes up a senior position – one of three Area Bishops – in the Diocese of Southwark, which serves 2.8 million people in the 16 Local Authorities of South London and East Surrey. The Kingston Episcopal Area is a richly varied part of London between Waterloo and Kingston upon Thames, covering 10 parliamentary constituencies and the London Boroughs of Lambeth, Wandsworth, Merton, Kingston and Richmond upon Thames (south of the Thames).

Martin said, “I am delighted at being chosen to be the next Bishop of Kingston and will take up my post with great excitement. I can’t think of a more interesting part of London to be Bishop. And yet there will also be sadness at leaving Bristol Diocese, where I was ordained and which has nurtured and affirmed me over many years. I am particularly grateful to the communities I have been part of: St Luke’s Barton Hill, Bristol Cathedral, the Bishop of Bristol’s Office and the Bishop of Bristol’s Staff Team. I have been privileged to work with excellent and committed colleagues and will take all that I have learned with me.”

Bishop Viv said, “Martin brought his pastoral skills, academic training and heart of service to the work of the Bishop’s Chaplain, developing the crucial relationship between the bishop and the wider diocese in my early years in post. He has seen the task of being a bishop close up and knows its opportunities, demands and constraints. I am thrilled that he has accepted the call of God and the church to his home diocese of Southwark and am very aware of the large gap he leaves.”

The Dean of Bristol, the Very Revd Mandy Ford said, “Over the past few years as both Canon Theologian and Bishop’s Chaplain, Martin has made a huge contribution to promoting social justice. His inspirational passion for climate and housing justice have put these areas of concern at the heart of our vision for transforming communities, both in the cathedral and diocese. The cathedral community will miss Martin’s insightful and challenging preaching as well as his support for our social justice group.”

Martin leaves his local posts in the New Year and will be consecrated as the new Bishop of Kingston in February 2023.

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