George Bell

Church Commissioners written question – answered on 29th February 2016.

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Photo of Frank Field Frank Field Chair, Work and Pensions Committee

To ask the right hon. Member for Meriden, representing the Church Commissioners, whether the settlement the Church Commissioners made to the complainant against George Bell was made directly in relation to allegations against Bell, or on the basis that a complaint made under a subsequent Bishop, was not handled in a way which would be expected today.

Photo of Caroline Spelman Caroline Spelman The Second Church Estates Commissioner

A formal claim for compensation was submitted in April 2014 and was settled in the autumn of 2015. The settlement followed a thorough pre-litigation process during which investigations took place.

Following the settlement of the claim the Bishop of Chichester, the Rt Revd Martin Warner issued a formal apology. The statement can be read on the Church of England’s website at the following address: https://www.churchofengland.org/media-centre/news/2015/10/statement-on-the-rt-revd-george-bell-%281883-1958%29.aspx

The statement from Bishop Warner went on to say that “the response from the Diocese of Chichester in 1995, when the survivor first came forward, fell a long way short, not just of what is expected now, but of what we now appreciate you should have had a right to expect then."

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