Tag Archives: Chichester Cathedral Guidebook “Society and Faith”

Bishop Bell and ‘The Cathedral Guide Letter’ to the Dean of Chichester

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Chichester Cathedral

Monday, November 28 2016

The Deanery

Chichester Cathedral

Chichester

West Sussex PO19 1PY

Dear Dean and Members of Chapter

We write concerning the recent publication of the Pitkin Guide to the Cathedral. In common with many people locally and nationally who have read it, we find your stance on the text concerning the late Bishop Bell unhelpful. We are given to understand the copyright is your responsibility and that you wrote the text in question.

When every effort is being made to heal the hurt and divisions occasioned by the way the Church locally and nationally has handled this affair, it seems to us unwise to leave in place any potentially damaging text about Bishop Bell.

As concern grows nationally regarding the handling of sexual abuse cases, we await the investigation into the Church of England’s handling of this affair.

In the meantime, we would suggest three possible courses of action:

1. The withdrawal of the Guide from sale pending the Review by Lord Carlile QC

2. The re-printing of the Guide, excluding – or re-writing – the text in question

3. The insertion of a Slip into every copy of the Guide, stating something along the lines of: “The accusation of child sexual abuse which has been made against Bishop George Bell is now the subject to an investigation – led by Lord Carlile QC – which will report in 2017”.

Thank you for giving this letter your consideration.

 

Yours sincerely

 

Timothy ADAMS

Janet AIDIN

Jill ARMSTEAD

Colin BAILLIEU

Renata BAILLIEU

Ann BARTLE

Ian BARTLE

John BENDIT

Marilyn BILLINGHAM

Professor Peter BILLINGHAM

Joanna BOGLE

Jean BRADLEY

Rt. Rev and Rt. Hon THE LORD CAREY OF CLIFTON

James CAULFEILD

Pat CHAMBERS

Rodney CHAMBERS

Dr Colin CLARK

Brian COOK

Yvette COOK

John DAVISON

The Rt Hon THE LORD DEAR

Pam DIGNUM

Mark DUNN

Grace DURHAM

Charlotte EVANS

The Reverend David EVANS

Anthony FRENCH

The Reverend Dr Jules GOMES

Yvonne GRAHAM

Dr Ruth Hildebrandt GRAYSON

Professor James GRAYSON

Annabelle HANCOCK

Richard HANCOCK

The Reverend Professor Martin HENIG

Ainslie HEPBURN

Peter HEPBURN

Christopher HILL

Christopher HOARE

Richard HOARE

Rosie HOARE

David HOPKINSON

SIR JOHN AND LADY MACLURE

Rachel MORIARTY

LADY [BRIDGET] NIXON

Noel OSBORNE

Rachael OSBORNE

The Very Reverend Professor Martyn PERCY

Thelma PERCY

John RANK

THE DUKE OF RICHMOND

Paul ROGERSON

Edith PINGREE-ROGERSON

Sandra SAER

Marguerite SAFFERY

Janice SAYERS

Martin SEWELL

Michael SHARP

Richard W. SYMONDS

THE LADY KENYA TATTON-BROWN

Dr Geoffrey THOMAS

The Reverend John TIBBS

Michael TIBBS

Clare TOOLE-MACKSON

Graham TOOLE-MACKSON

Bill WADE

Michael WOOLLEY

Dermot WRIGHT

LADY WRIGHT

Hugh WYATT

For any reply and/or further information, please contact:

Richard W. Symonds The Bell Society 2 Lychgate Cottages Ifield Street, Ifield Village Crawley, West Sussex RH11 0NN
Tel: 07540 309592 (Text only – Very deaf)

Email: richardsy5@aol.com

cc The Rt Revd Dr Martin Warner, Bishop of Chichester

Further Information:

https://richardwsymonds.wordpress.com/2016/11/16/bishop-bell-letter-delivered-to-bishop-of-chichester-november-16-2016/

 

Peter Hitchens on Bishop Bell – Sunday – October 23 2016

http://hitchensblog.mailonsunday.co.uk/2016/10/peter-hitchens-why-are-these-child-refugees-fleeing-france-the-bad-coffee.html

Peter Hitchens – Mail on Sunday – October 23 2016

This is NOT justice – it’s a witch hunt 

BISHOP 1

George Bell, Bishop of Chichester

The Great Child Abuse Inquiry continues to devour itself, in a storm of rumour and whispers. There is some justice in this.

The whole idea that this country is waist-deep in unprosecuted abuse scandals has always been based on allegations that cannot be objectively proved. Now this industry is the target of its own methods.

The whole country has become a vast kangaroo court, in which guilty and innocent alike are accused, and in many cases we can never find the truth.

For a year, I have been fighting the case of the late Bishop George Bell, whose courage and principle I have long admired, who was suddenly accused of long-ago child abuse by a solitary complainant, 57 years after his death. No other accusers have come forward.

To begin with, his own church, aided by several newspapers, the BBC and the police, acted disgracefully as if his guilt was proven. The police even said they would have arrested him if he hadn’t been dead, an absurd and meaningless statement which persuaded many he was guilty.

Now, thanks to relentless pressure by many good people, plus me, the BBC have honourably retreated, the police have softened their line, and the Church themselves have published a booklet about Chichester Cathedral in which they admit that the charges against Bishop Bell have never been tested in any court and are just ‘plausible’, a feeble word given that the accusation, if true, would strip away his good name for ever.

It’s not enough. But it took all the running we could do just to stay in the same place, returning to the old English custom that all are presumed innocent until guilt is proven. If the Prime Minister and the Home Secretary could grasp this point, their hopeless inquiry could be shut down before it soaks up the entire national budget and we could go back to proper British justice.

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New Guidebook on sale in the Cathedral bookshop : “Chichester Cathedral – Society and Faith” [Pitkin 2016] – Page 37 

https://richardwsymonds.wordpress.com/2016/10/18/chichester-cathedral-september/