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Bishops' biographical notes

The Rt Revd Christopher Chessun
Bishop of Southwark

Bishop Christopher

Rt Revd Christopher Chessun

Christopher Chessun was born in 1956 in Hampton, Middlesex, the elder of identical twins. He was educated at Hampton Grammar School and went on to University College Oxford where he read Modern History. He trained for the priesthood at Westcott House, Cambridge from 1980-1983, reading for Part II Theology Tripos through Trinity Hall, Cambridge. Ordained as deacon in 1983, he served his title at St Michael & All Angels, Sandhurst, before moving on in 1987 to the post of senior curate at St Mary, Portsea in Portsmouth Diocese.

In 1989 he became Chaplain and Minor Canon at St Paul's Cathedral and Vocations Adviser in the Diocese of London in 1990, staying in both these roles until 1993 when he was appointed Rector of St Dunstan & All Saints', Stepney. Between 1997 and 2001 he was Area Dean of Tower Hamlets. In Stepney he held a number of ex-officio posts on the Governing Bodies of various Trusts and Church Schools. He remains a Patron of Tower Hamlets Mission.

In April 2001 he was installed as Archdeacon of Northolt and during this time he was a Trustee of the North Thames Ministerial Training Course, Chairman of the Trustees of St George’s Chapel at Heathrow Airport and chaired the London Diocesan Schools’ Committee.

In April 2005 he was consecrated bishop in Southwark Cathedral, taking up his appointment as Area Bishop of Woolwich and Urban Bishop for the Diocese of Southwark. The Woolwich Area is linked with the Diocese of Manicaland in the eastern highlands of Zimbabwe.  Bishop Christopher made an initial visit in June 2006, the first of a number of visits to strengthen the inter-diocesan links.   

In March 2011 he began public ministry as the tenth Bishop of Southwark.  He is a strong advocate for the parish system as the most effective means of church presence and engagement in the life of local communities including the need to proclaim the Gospel afresh amid the rapid changes in church and community life.

In December 2014 he was introduced to the House of Lords.

The Rt Revd Dr Richard Cheetham

Rt Revd Dr Richard Cheetham

Bishop of Kingston

When he became Bishop of Kingston in 2002, Richard Cheetham returned to the area of his childhood. He was brought up in Surbiton and his parents still live there. He attended Kingston Grammar School between 1966 and 1974, went to church in Tolworth and was confirmed in Surbiton.

He won an Open Exhibition to Corpus Christi College, Oxford. He graduated in 1977, with a Joint Honours degree in Physics and Philosophy. He was an Oxford Hockey Blue and an under 19 player for England. He followed this with a Post Graduate Certificate in Education (PGCE) at Corpus Christi College Oxford and then taught science at a large comprehensive school in Richmond, North Yorkshire, (1978-1980). From there he moved to be Assistant Physics Master at Eton College, Windsor (1980-1983) before becoming an investment analyst in London.

In 1985, he went to Ripon College, Cuddesdon where he obtained a Certificate in Theology and in 1987 he was ordained deacon. He served his title at Holy Cross Church, Newcastle and was priested in 1988.

In 1990, he moved to become Vicar of St Augustine of Canterbury, Limbury, Luton in the Diocese of St Albans and was Rural Dean of Luton from 1995 –1998. During this period he was founder and convenor of an ecumenical study group and a founding member of Luton SACRE. He was awarded a PhD by King College London in October 1999.

In February 1999 he became the Archdeacon of St Albans and in July 2002, he moved to Southwark when appointed Bishop of Kingston.

He is married to Felicity and they have a daughter and a son. He still plays hockey and squash regularly. His other interests include theatre, cinema and walking.

Bishop Richard's website

The Rt Revd Jonathan Clark

Rt Revd Jonathan Clark

Bishop of Croydon

Bishop Jonathan was educated at Exeter University and ordained as a priest in 1989. After a curacy in Carlisle he was a chaplain at Bristol University then Director of Studies of the Southern Theological Education and Training Scheme. From 1997 to 2003 he was chaplain at the University of North London, and from 1999-2003 also Area Dean of Islington. He then moved across to Hackney as Rector of Stoke Newington until his episcopal appointment as Bishop of Croydon in 2012.

He is married to Alison, a senior lecturer at the Open University, and the couple have two grown-up children.  Outside of his church work he is a fan of Westray in the Orkney Islands, his favourite place for walking, reading and writing, and a supporter of Tottenham Hotspur football club.

The Rt Revd Dr Karowei Dorgu

The Rt Revd Dr Woyin Karowei Dorgu

Rt Revd Dr Karowei Dorgu

Bishop of Woolwich

Bishop Karowei is the 13th Bishop of Woolwich. He was ordained Deacon in 1995 and Priest in 1996 and previously served all his ministry in the Diocese of London. His curacy was at St Mark, Tollington Park and from 1998 he built the community of faith at St John, Upper Holloway.

Born and brought up in Nigeria, Dr Dorgu worked as a medical doctor before ordination. He is married to Mosun who is a Consultant Child Psychiatrist.

His interests include personal fitness, reading and cooking for others. He enjoys travel and discovering new places and cultures. He plays tennis, cycles and visits the gym. He is a keen supporter of Arsenal Football Club.