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Ruth Elizabeth Worsley, QHC (born 1962) is a Church of England bishop. Since September 2015, she has been the Bishop of Taunton, a suffragan bishop of the Diocese of Bath and Wells. From 2013 to 2015, she was Archdeacon of Wiltshire.

Ruth Worsley

Bishop of Taunton
ChurchChurch of England
DioceseDiocese of Bath and Wells
In office2015–present
Other postsArchdeacon of Wiltshire (2013–2015)
Honorary Chaplain to the Queen
Ordination1996 (deacon)
1997 (priest)
Consecration29 September 2015
by Justin Welby
Personal details
Born1962 (age 56–57)
Hampton, Middlesex, United Kingdom
Alma materUniversity of Manchester
St John's College, Nottingham

Early lifeEdit

Worsley was born in 1962 in Hampton, Middlesex.[1][2] She studied English literature, theology and biblical studies at the University of Manchester. She was training to be a nurse when she felt the call to ministry and left to take up a position as a lay minister.[2] She trained for ordained ministry at St John's College, Nottingham, an Anglican theological college.[3]

Ordained ministryEdit

Worsley was ordained in the Church of England: made a deacon at Michaelmas 1996 (29 September) by Patrick Harris, Bishop of Southwell at St Mary's Church, Nottingham[4] and ordained a priest the Michaelmas following (5 October 1997), by Alan Morgan, Bishop of Sherwood at St Peter's Church, Ravenshead.[5] She served curacies at St Leodegarius Church, Basford (1996 to 1998) and St Stephen's Church, Hyson Green (1998 to 2001) in Nottingham.[1] From 2001 to 2008, she was priest-in-charge of the benefice of Hyson Green (St Stephen's Church) and Forest Fields.[1][6] She was also Area Dean of Nottingham North between 2006 and 2008.[1]

From 2007 to 2010, Worsley was Dean of Women's Ministry in the Diocese of Southwell and Nottingham and an honorary canon of Southwell Minster.[7] In 2009 she was appointed an Honorary Chaplain to the Queen;[8] and in 2010 to the post of Parish Development Officer for the Woolwich Area of the Diocese of Southwark.[9] In February 2013, she was appointed Archdeacon of Wilts.[10] She stood down as archdeacon upon becoming a bishop.

Episcopal ministryEdit

On 30 June 2015, she was announced as the next Bishop of Taunton, a suffragan bishop in the Diocese of Bath and Wells.[3][11] On 29 September 2015, she was consecrated a bishop by Justin Welby, Archbishop of Canterbury, during a service at St Paul's Cathedral, London.[12][13] She was installed as Bishop of Taunton at Wells Cathedral on 2 October.[14] Her first act as a bishop was to admit and licence nine people as readers.[15]

Personal lifeEdit

Worsley is married to Howard who is also ordained in the Church of England.[6][16] Together, they have three children; Nathanael, Jonathan and Benjamin.[2]


  1. ^ a b c d "Ruth Elizabeth Worsley". Crockford's Clerical Directory (online ed.). Church House Publishing. Retrieved 23 June 2018.
  2. ^ a b c "Bishop Ruth Worsley". Diocese of Bath and Wells. Church of England. Retrieved 25 November 2015.
  3. ^ a b "Suffragan Bishop of Taunton: Ruth Worsley". Prime Minister's Office, 10 Downing Street. Government of the United Kingdom. 30 June 2015. Retrieved 30 June 2015.
  4. ^ "Michaelmas Ordinations". Church Times (#6973). 4 October 1996. p. 4. ISSN 0009-658X. Retrieved 7 May 2019 – via UK Press Online archives.
  5. ^ "Ordinations". Church Times (#7026). 10 October 1997. p. 4. ISSN 0009-658X. Retrieved 7 May 2019 – via UK Press Online archives.
  6. ^ a b "TAUNTON, Bishop Suffragan of,". Who's Who 2017. Oxford University Press. November 2016. Retrieved 29 December 2016.
  7. ^ Southwell Anglican
  8. ^ This is Wiltshire
  9. ^ The Times
  10. ^ Salisbury Anglican
  11. ^ Diocese of Bath & Wells — Ruth Worsley announced as next Bishop of Taunton (Accessed 2 July 2015)
  12. ^ "New women bishops ordained at St Paul's Cathedral". St Paul's Cathedral. 29 September 2015. Retrieved 30 September 2015.
  13. ^ Diocese of Bath & Wells — Bishops & Archdeacons (Accessed 4 September 2015)
  14. ^ "First female Bishop of Taunton to be officially installed in Wells Cathedral this weekend". Western Gazette. 29 September 2015. Archived from the original on 2 October 2015. Retrieved 30 September 2015. Cite uses deprecated parameter |deadurl= (help)
  15. ^ "Ruth Worsley installed as new Bishop of Taunton". BBC News. 3 October 2015. Retrieved 25 November 2015.
  16. ^ "Howard John Worsley". Crockford's Clerical Directory (online ed.). Church House Publishing. Retrieved 29 December 2016.
Church of England titles
Preceded by
John Wraw
Archdeacon of Wiltshire
2013 to 2015
Succeeded by
Sue Groom
Preceded by
Peter Maurice
Bishop of Taunton
2015 to present