The Appointments Committee of the Church of England has appointed Dame Sarah Asplin to succeed Sir Andrew McFarlane as Chair of the Clergy Discipline Commission with effect from 1st January 2019.

Sir Mark Hedley will continue in his role of Deputy Chair.

The Chair and Deputy Chair of the Commission also serve respectively as President of Tribunals and Deputy President.

Notes to editors

  • The Clergy Discipline Commission is constituted under section 3 of the Clergy Discipline Measure 2003. The Commission oversees the disciplinary system in respect of clergy of the Church of England. Its principle functions are to issue codes of practice and general policy guidance to those who exercise clergy discipline functions and to give general advice to disciplinary tribunals, bishops and archbishops as to the penalties which are appropriate in particular circumstances.
  • The President of Tribunals, and in her place the Deputy President, exercise certain judicial functions in the course of disciplinary proceedings – these include determining applications for permission to make a complaint out of time, reviewing decisions by bishops to dismiss complaints, hearing appeals by clergy against suspension, and deciding when a complaint should be referred to a disciplinary tribunal for a full hearing.
  • Dame Sarah Asplin is a Lady Justice of Appeal.
  • Sir Andrew McFarlane was President of Tribunals for five years.

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