John Storrs (priest)

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John Storrs (1846 - 29 February 1928[1]) was an Anglican priest at the end of the 19th century and the first decades of the 20th century.[2]

Storrs was born in Novia Scotia, Canada, as the eldest son of the Revd John Storrs of Wolfville, Nova Scotia. He was educated in England at The King's School, Rochester,[3] matriculating in 1865 and going up to Pembroke College, Cambridge.[4] He obtained his BA in 1869, his MA in 1873 and received a DD in 1913.

Storrs was ordained deacon in 1871 and a priest in 1873. He was a curate at St Mary’s Bury St Edmunds.[5] and then at St Peter's Eaton Square, London. From 1880 he was the vicar of St James’ Bury St Edmunds and, from 1883, at St Peter’s Eaton Square before becoming the Dean of Rochester in 1913. Whilst at St Peter's he served as the rural dean[clarification needed][a] from 1891 to 1902, then was the Rural Dean of Westminster from 1902 until his move to Rochester. In 1912 and 1913 he was an honorary chaplain to King George V.[4]

Plaque recording the restoration of the Gundulf Tower

Storrs was responsible for various projects in the cathedral, notably the recasting of the bells in 1921 and the restoration of the Gundulf Tower (see illustration to the left).

I was recast in memory of
Francis Edmund Storrs, R. N. V. R.,
son of the Dean,
died 10th November 1918,
eve of the Armistice.

κτεπόθη ό θάνατοΣ ΕιΣ ΝικοΣ

I Corinthians 15:54 "Death is swallowed up in victory"

Storrs married Lucy Anna Maria Cockayne-Cust in 1881. Storrs had six children: Ronald (1881–1955), Francis (1882–1918), Bernard (1884–1967), Monica (b. 1888), Christopher (1889–1978) and Petronella (1896–1978). Ronald Storrs, was an official in the Foreign and Colonial Office. Francis Edmund, was in the Royal Navy Volunteer Reserve and died the day before the First World War ended. His father received the telegram whilst on the way to the cathedral to preach at the service of thanksgiving. In Francis' memory the tenor bell[b] at Rochester Cathedral bears the inscription shown on the right.[6] Monica, returned to Canada as a missionary in the Peace River area. Christopher Storrs (b. 4 February 1889) became a bishop in Australia. Petronella married and became Mrs Moor.

There is an oak screen memorial to Storrs in Rochester Cathedral.[7]



  1. ^ Even at this date the term "rural dean" was archaic and has now been replaced by "area dean"
  2. ^ The tenor is the largest, heaviest and deepest sounding bell in a ring of bells


  1. ^ The Times, 1 March 1928, p. 16, "Obituary: The Dean Of Rochester Organizer And Preacher"
  2. ^ The Peerage website.
  3. ^ Who was Who, 1897-1990, London, A & C Black, 1991, ISBN 0-7136-3457-X
  4. ^ a b "Storrs, John (STRS865J)". A Cambridge Alumni Database. University of Cambridge. 
  5. ^ The Clergy List, Clerical Guide and Ecclesiastical Directory, London, Hamilton & Co 1889
  6. ^ Love, Dickon, Church Bells of Kent, p. Rochester, Cathedral of Christ and the Blessed Virgin Mary, retrieved 2013-12-01  See also Rochester tenor
  7. ^ Friends of Medway Archives
Church of England titles
Preceded by
Ernald Lane
Dean of Rochester
Succeeded by
Reginald Thomas Talbot