He was educated from 1964-69 at Saint Aidan's, Sunderland, a Christian Brothers school. He was a seminarian from 1969–70, where he attended the Redemptorist Minor Seminary in Birmingham. He subsequently was a novice at Perth, Scotland.
On 21 August 1971 he began his ecclesiastical studies at Hawkstone Hall and Canterbury. He was ordained as a priest on 10 July 1976. Heskett was parish priest at St Mary's Roman Catholic Church, Clapham from 1999 to 2008.
- Gibraltar Chronicle, "The New Bishop Ralph Heskett"
- Rt Rev Ralph Heskett C.Ss.R, Catholic Bishops Conference, retrieved 2 October 2013
- (Spanish) Europa Sur, "The Vatican Appoints Ralph Heskett as New Bishop"
- Catholic South End mission statement
- Panorama, "Interview with Father Ralph Heskett, Bishop-elect of Gibraltar"
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