The Very Revd Nicholas Henshall announces his departure as Dean of Chelmsford


After nearly nine years as Dean of Chelmsford, the Very Revd Nicholas Henshall, has announced that he is moving to be Parish Priest of St Thomas the Apostle, New Groombridge in the Diocese of Chichester.

Commenting on his announcement, Nicholas said:

"It has been an extraordinary privilege to serve as Dean of Chelmsford over the last nine years. The task I was given in 2014 was to stretch a parish church to become a Cathedral for the whole Diocese.

“It was clear from the beginning that this was a process of culture change that would take decades rather than years, and my role was to start that journey. It has been great to see the Cathedral rise to the challenge, and personally I've loved leading worship and preaching in churches and communities across the Diocese and across church traditions.

“Playing a part in building links and forming relationships in the Diocese, and just as significantly in the city and the region, has been - and continues to be - at the heart of the work of the Cathedral."

The Bishop of Chelmsford, the Rt Revd Dr Guli Francis-Dehqani has paid tribute to Nicholas following the announcement:

“I’m hugely grateful to Nicholas for his contribution to the life of Chelmsford Cathedral and our Diocese over the past nine years. His achievements have been considerable. Chelmsford Cathedral has become a more accessible and welcoming place and he has shown great commitment towards making it a cathedral for the whole diocese. This was particularly important during the height of the Coronavirus Pandemic. I also want to thank him for the important work he has done in wider civic and community life as Dean of the Cathedral. I wish him and Christine every blessing in this next phase of their ministry.”

Nicholas, and his wife Christine, will be moving in the early spring. There will be a service at Chelmsford Cathedral in early February, to give thanks for Nicholas’ ministry and to say farewell. Further details will be published in the coming days.

Dean’s Letter

The Very Reverend Nicholas Henshall has written and recorded a Dean’s Letter in which he talks about his move to become Parish Priest of St Thomas the Apostle, New Groombridge. You can watch it below or read a transcript here.

To listen to an interview with Dean Nicholas about his departure broadcast on BBC Essex, click here to go to BBC Sounds.

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