Comments: Women Bishops - diocesan debates - 5 November

Derby figures

Main motion passed: Bishops 2/0, Clergy 18/7, Laity 27/10

CEEC following motion defeated: Bishops 0/2, Clergy 8/18, Laity 12/27

Posted by John at Sunday, 6 November 2011 at 4:56pm GMT

The Chester figures can be found at (or find Diocesan Synod from the homepage using the dropdown menu under "home". Includes abstentions and has 2 bishops abstaining rather than voting against.

Posted by Peter at Sunday, 6 November 2011 at 10:24pm GMT

Could someone please explain to this American the significance of the motion favoring a "single clause" noted in the report from Lincoln? I thought I had been following the topic, but obviously have not been sufficiently attentive.

Posted by RobinD at Monday, 7 November 2011 at 3:55am GMT

Please, can any of our 'T.A.' hosts give us an arithmetical update of the figures For v Against in the diocesan debates on the proposal to ordain Women Bishops in the church of England - to date.

Also, how many dioceses are there still to vote?

Posted by Father Ron Smith at Monday, 7 November 2011 at 8:40am GMT

Although not updated for Saturday as I write, the best status list is here
which shows six more to go.
Only two against so far on main motion.

Posted by Simon Sarmiento at Monday, 7 November 2011 at 9:21am GMT

'Only two against so far on main motion'.

and it is worth remembering that in Chichester, one of those voting against the main motion, on the legislation, the majority against was very small, and moreover on the first 'Chichester Question', there was a majority in favour of women bishops.

Posted by Richard Ashby at Monday, 7 November 2011 at 9:30am GMT

The Answer to Father Ron is that 38 of the 44 dioceses have voted. The remaining 6 vote next Saturday (just before the deadline) and this phase of the process will be complete.

36 Diocesan Synods have approved the measure. Chichester was against, and London was split with the laity approving it and the clergy against.

Full figures for all except the most recent can be found on the WATCH website at

The totals to date (which do not include Coventry or Bradford or any Derby abstentions) are as follows:

For: 58 - Against: 13 - Abstain: 3
of those who voted 82% in favour

For: 1217 - Against: 389 - Abstain: 44
of those who voted 76% were in favour

For: 1396 - Against: 413 - Abstain: 52
of those who voted 77% were in favour.

Posted by Peter at Monday, 7 November 2011 at 9:52am GMT


A Single Clause Measure would have enabled simply that women be ordained to the episcopate, without any provision at all for those opposed. The legislation on which dioceses are currently voting is a compromise: the Code of Practice makes provision for those who will be unable to accept women's episcopal ministry, but is less than the stronger statutory provision that they requested.

General Synod has already voted that they would not support a Single Clause Measure.

Posted by Hannah at Monday, 7 November 2011 at 10:10am GMT

For RobinD - as I understand it the "single clause" legislation would allow women to be Bishops and would provide no concessions at all to those who have theological objections.

Posted by Peter at Monday, 7 November 2011 at 11:19am GMT

Fr Ron (et al.) – I keep a spreadsheet of the scores so far, and a version of it is available here:

(But I shan't add Saturday's figures til we have them in full...)

Posted by Dan Barnes-Davies at Monday, 7 November 2011 at 11:29am GMT

Thanks Everyone, for your helpful response to my query on diocesan voting on Women Bishops. Let's hope the percentage in favour bears equal weight in the General Synod discussions to follow.

Posted by Father Ron Smith at Tuesday, 8 November 2011 at 10:37am GMT

Coventry voting figures are up on the WATCH website:

Bishops: 2 For, 0 Against, 0 Abstentions
Clergy: 18 For, 2 Against, 4 Abstentions
Laity: 40 For, 5 Against, 2 Abstentions
(Low turnout in the House of Clergy)

No results from Bradford yet?

Posted by Wilf at Tuesday, 8 November 2011 at 8:16pm GMT

On reviewing the Coventry motions, I noted this:

"Calls upon the House of Bishops to ensure that sufficient provision is made within the
Code of Practice for those who cannot in conscience agree with the Measure.”

As a final Motion to provide alternate provision for dissenters - apart from delegation through the Diocesan Bishop (who could be a Woman) - was substantially defeated, I take the mood of the Coventry Meeting was affirming the right of the Diocesan Bishop (male or female) to have the right to delegate his/her authority to minister to dissenters.

This would be preferable to the provision of an alternative oversight - without the Diocesan's express permission. But would it meet the demands of the dissidents?

Posted by Father Ron Smith at Tuesday, 8 November 2011 at 10:33pm GMT

Where are Bradford's results?.. I do note that Bradford voted for alternative episcopal oversight enshrined in canon law?

Posted by Robert ian Williams at Wednesday, 9 November 2011 at 6:20am GMT

Further to Wilf's comment WATCH also have the Derby abstentions: 1 clergy and 3 laity.

Posted by Peter at Wednesday, 9 November 2011 at 8:55am GMT


You have copied the Lincoln laity votes in the figures for Coventry. I have added the figures from WATCH to my article but there is clearly a mistake somewhere as the total yes votes do not agree.

Posted by Peter Owen at Wednesday, 9 November 2011 at 9:39am GMT

Thanks for pointing that out, Peter. Also, it is curious that the WATCH figures (set out above) for votes in favour are the same in Coventry and Derby.

Has there possibly been a transcription error?

Posted by Wilf at Wednesday, 9 November 2011 at 10:51am GMT

Coventry results now corrected on WATCH site:

Bishops 2-0-0
Clergy 35-2-4
Laity 34-4-1

Posted by Wilf at Wednesday, 9 November 2011 at 4:47pm GMT
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