Alan Wilson (bishop)

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Alan Wilson
Bishop of Buckingham
ChurchChurch of England
DioceseDiocese of Oxford
In office2003–present
PredecessorMike Hill
Ordination1979 (deacon)
by Eric Wild
1980 (priest)
by Patrick Rodger
Consecration9 October 2003
by Rowan Williams
Personal details
Born (1955-03-27) 27 March 1955 (age 64)
Redford Barracks, Edinburgh, United Kingdom
(m. 1984)
Alma materSt John's College, Cambridge
Wycliffe Hall, Oxford
Balliol College, Oxford

Alan Thomas Lawrence Wilson (born 27 March 1955) is a British Anglican bishop. Since October 2003, he has been the area Bishop of Buckingham in the Diocese of Oxford.

Early life[edit]

Wilson was born on 27 March 1955 in Redford Barracks in Edinburgh, Scotland.[1] He was educated at Sevenoaks School, then an all-boys independent school in Kent.[2] He studied history at St John's College, Cambridge, graduating with a Bachelor of Arts (BA) degree in 1977;[2][3] as per tradition, this was promoted to a Master of Arts (MA Cantab) degree in 1981.[2] From 1977 to 1979, he trained for ordained ministry at Wycliffe Hall, Oxford.[4]

Ordained ministry[edit]

Wilson was made a deacon at Petertide (1 July) 1979 by Eric Wild, Bishop of Reading, at St Peter's, Didcot,[5] and ordained a priest the Petertide following (29 June 1980) by Patrick Rodger, Bishop of Oxford, at Christ Church Cathedral, Oxford.[6] From 1979 to 1981 he was an honorary assistant curate of Eynsham[1] (where he met his future wife) and also held an academic position funded by the University of Oxford.[7] From 1981 to 1982, he was an assistant curate in the same parish, his academic position having ended.[1]

His Doctor of Philosophy (DPhil) degree, for which he studied as a student of Balliol College, Oxford, was awarded in 1989.[1] He had completed his thesis in 1988. The official title of his thesis is The theology of church and party of some London ritualistic clergy and parishes, 1880–1914, with special reference to the Church Crisis of 1898-1906, although it bears the unofficial title The authority of church and party among London Anglo-Catholics, 1880–1914, with special reference to the Church Crisis, 1898–1904.[8]

Wilson spent the following years of his ministry in a variety of positions, including as a prison chaplain.[9] He was Vicar of St Michaels, Sandhurst,[10] Rural Dean of Sonning and an honorary canon at Christ Church Cathedral, Oxford.

Episcopal ministry[edit]

On 9 October 2003, Wilson was consecrated a bishop by Rowan Williams, Archbishop of Canterbury, during a service at Westminster Abbey.[11] He then became Bishop of Buckingham, an area bishop in the Diocese of Oxford.[3]

On 11 February 2017, fourteen retired bishops signed an open letter to the then-serving bishops of the Church of England. In an unprecedented move, they expressed their opposition to the House of Bishops' report to General Synod on sexuality, which recommended no change to the Church's canons or practises around sexuality.[12] By 13 February, Wilson (the only serving bishop) and nine further retired bishops had added their signatures;[13] on 15 February, the report was rejected by synod.[14]

Personal life[edit]

Wilson has been married since 1984 and they have five children.[15]


  • The Reverend Alan Wilson (1979–1989)
  • The Reverend Doctor Alan Wilson (1989–2002)
  • The Reverend Canon Doctor Alan Wilson (2002–2003)
  • The Right Reverend Doctor Alan Wilson (2003–present)


  1. ^ a b c d Crockford's Clerical Directory (97th edn, London, 2001), p. 829.
  2. ^ a b c "BUCKINGHAM, Area Bishop of,". Who's Who 2017. Oxford University Press. November 2016. Retrieved 1 February 2017.
  3. ^ a b "Bishop Alan". Diocese of Oxford. Retrieved 12 July 2015.
  4. ^ "Alan Thomas Lawrence Wilson". Crockford's Clerical Directory (online ed.). Church House Publishing. Retrieved 1 February 2017.
  5. ^ "Petertide ordinations". Church Times (#6073). 6 July 1979. p. 17. ISSN 0009-658X. Retrieved 23 July 2017 – via UK Press Online archives.
  6. ^ "Petertide ordinations". Church Times (#6125). 4 July 1980. p. 5. ISSN 0009-658X. Retrieved 23 July 2017 – via UK Press Online archives.
  7. ^ Christine Zwart, God in the Life of Alan Wilson, Oxford Diocese website, 9 October 2003. Accessed 13 October 2008.
  8. ^ "Wilson, Alan (Alan Thomas Lawrence), (1988). The authority of church and party among London Anglo-Catholics, 1880-1914, with special reference to the Church Crisis, 1898-1904. DPhil. University of Oxford". Oxford Research Archive. University of Oxford.
  9. ^ Interview with Bishop Alan.
  10. ^ "History - Past Clergy". Retrieved 11 October 2018.
  11. ^ Kershaw, Simon (9 October 2003). "ordination of bishops". As I was going to St Ives: jottings by Simon Kershaw. Thinking Anglicans. Retrieved 12 July 2015.
  12. ^ Retired Bishops' Letter — The Letter Archived 12 February 2017 at the Wayback Machine (Accessed 11 February 2017; the fourteen bishops were David Atkinson, Michael Doe, Tim Ellis, David Gillett, John Gladwin, Laurie Green, Richard Harries, Stephen Lowe, Stephen Platten, John Pritchard, Peter Selby, Tim Stevens, Martin Wharton, and Williamson.)
  13. ^ Retired Bishops' Letter — New Signatures Archived 18 February 2017 at the Wayback Machine (Accessed 17 February 2017; the nine bishops were Gordon Bates, Ian Brackley, John Davies, Peter Maurice, David Rossdale, John Saxbee, Martin Shaw, Oliver Simon, and David Stancliffe.
  14. ^ The Grauniad — Church of England in turmoil as synod rejects report on same-sex relationships (Accessed 17 February 2017)
  15. ^ "Biography and Contact". Bishop Alan's blog. Retrieved 12 July 2015.

External links[edit]

Church of England titles
Preceded by
Mike Hill
Bishop of Buckingham