About the Right Revd Christopher Herbert BA PGCE MPhil Ph.D

Christopher Herbert is married to Jan and they have two adult children, both married. Chris and Jan are grandparents four times over.

Christopher Herbert was born in Lydney in the Forest of Dean, Gloucestershire in 1944. His father helped run the family road haulage business, but was also very proud of his roots as a foundryman and moulder in a local iron works.

He was educated at Monmouth School for Boys and went on to read Biblical Studies and Philosophy at the University of Wales, Lampeter. He graduated in 1965 and went to Wells Theological College, and, at the same time, obtained a Postgraduate Certificate of Education at the University of Bristol.

He was ordained in 1967 and served as assistant curate at St Paul’s, Tupsley, Hereford. During this time he taught Religious Education (RE) and Social Studies at the Bishop of Herford’s Bluecoat School and was a youth leader. In 1971 he became RE Adviser for the Diocese of Hereford and then, in 1976, Diocesan Director of Education, where he was responsible for developing a residential education centre. He served on both the Shropshire County Education Committee and the Hereford and Worcester County Education Committee,and created some new church schools. He was made a Prebendary of Hereford Cathedral in 1977.

From 1981-1990 he was Vicar of The Bourne, Farnham, Surrey. In addition, he was appointed Director of Post-Ordination Training for the Diocese of Guildford and was made a Canon of Guildford Cathedral, before becoming Archdeacon of Dorking in 1990. He became Bishop of St Albans in 1995. During his tenure as a diocesan bishop, he also served as Chairman of the Hospital Chaplaincies Council, Chairman of General Synod, National Chairman of the Council of Christians and Jews, and Chairman of the East of England Churches Network. He entered the House of Lords in 1999 and established himself as a speaker in the areas of health and medical ethics. He was a member of the House of Lords Select Committee which was asked to scrutinise and explore proposals relating to changing the law on euthanasia and assisted suicide.

Bishop Christopher Herbert has an interest in and love for all forms of literature. He is a prolific author in his own right.(See Publications page on this web-site) Much of his writing is based on the themes of prayer and spirituality, for both children and adults. Among his best-known books are Ways into Prayer (Church House Publishing, 1987) and Pocket Prayers (Church House Publishing, 1993). In 2002 he completed a major piece of research into ‘The Image of the Resurrection of Jesus in 15th Century Northern European Art’, for which he was awarded an MPhil by the University of Leicester in 2002. He was awarded a Ph.D by the University of Leicester in 2008, for his ground-breaking research on ‘The Origins of the Easter Sepulchre in Pre-Reformation England’. He has been a guest lecturer at the National Gallery, Westminster Abbey and the Courtauld Institute, the Salisbury International Arts Festival and at Cathedrals and churches across the UK.

In November 2003 he was awarded an Honorary Doctor of Letters by the University of Hertfordshire, pictured above, and was made an Honorary Doctor of Arts by the University of Bedfordshire in 2008 for his contribution to community life.

In 2008 he was made an Honorary Citizen of Fano, Italy for his work in building inter-church and community relationships between Fano and St Albans.

He retired as Bishop of St Albans in 2009, having served 13 years in that position. He and Jan now live in Surrey.

On retirement he was appointed as a voluntary Non-Executive Director of the Abbeyfield Society.

He serves as an honorary assistant bishop in the dioceses of Guildford, Salisbury and Winchester.

For a list of Christopher Herbert’s publications, click here.

Christopher Herbert’s Curriculum Vitae


Why ‘Three Abbeys’?

The Bishop and Mrs Herbert have long associations with three Abbeys in the UK, namely, St Albans, Kirkstall, and Tintern.

Follow the links here to view their sites.

St Albans Abbey

Kirkstall Abbey

Tintern Abbey