26 April 2012
The Prime Minister has appointed the Rt
Hon the Lord Luce KG, GCVO to be Chairman of the Crown Nominations
Commission for its selection of the next Archbishop of Canterbury
to succeed the Most Reverend and Rt Hon Rowan Williams. Dr Williams
has announced that he will stand down on 31 December 2012.
Commenting on his appointment, Lord Luce said:" It is a great
privilege to have been invited by the Prime Minister to chair the
Crown Nominations Commission for the selection of the next
Archbishop of Canterbury. I approach the task with humility and a
strong sense of the responsibility that I and my colleagues on the
"I am very conscious of the significance of the Archbishop's
role both nationally and across the world. It is, of course, of
great importance both to the Church of England and to the wider
community in our country, given the Church's contribution to our
society at all levels. The Archbishop is also the head of
world-wide Anglican Communion. And the appointment of an Archbishop
of Canterbury also means a great deal for other Christian
denominations and for other faiths.
"Archbishop Rowan has made an outstanding contribution in all of
these spheres. Finding a worthy successor will not be an easy task
for the Commission.
The responsibility of chairing the Commission is, of course, a
heavy one. But I am fortified by the knowledge that I will be
supported and advised by the other members of the Commission who
have a wide range of talents and experience."
Richard Luce, age 75, has long experience in public
affairs. In the House of Lords he sits on the Cross Benches as an
independent Life Peer. He is currently High Steward of Westminster
Abbey. His career spans the overseas civil service, business,
Parliament (Conservative MP for 21 years), a Minister for 10 years
(Minister of State, Foreign and Commonwealth Office, Minister for
the Arts and Minister for the Civil Service), Vice Chancellor of
the University of Buckingham and Governor and Commander-in-Chief of
He retired in 2006 having served six years as Lord Chamberlain
to The Queen, the senior official in the Royal Household. He is
serving, or has served, as President, Chairman or Trustee of a
number of charitable bodies. In 2008 The Queen made him a Knight
Companion of the Order of the Garter.
Richard Luce is a lifelong Anglican. He and his wife, Rose, who
is a Lay Minister in the Church of England, worship at a parish
church near their home in West Sussex.
The appointment has been made by the Prime Minister after taking
soundings of senior figures in the Church.
The Crown Nominations Commission will put its recommendation for
the next Archbishop to the Prime Minister, who will seek the
agreement of Her Majesty The Queen. It is expected that the name of
the new Archbishop will be announced in the Autumn.
The Commission is a largely Church-elected body, including both
clergy and lay members and representatives of the worldwide
Anglican Communion. For the See of Canterbury the Prime Minister
appoints its chair.