Robert Freeman (bishop)

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The Right Reverend
Robert Freeman
Bishop of Penrith
Church Church of England
Diocese Diocese of Carlisle
In office 2011–present
Predecessor James Newcome
Other posts Archdeacon of Halifax (2003–2011)
Ordination 1977 (deacon); 1978 (priest)
Consecration 28 October 2011[1]
Personal details
Born (1952-10-26) 26 October 1952 (age 65)
Cambridge, Cambridgeshire, United Kingdom
Nationality British
Denomination Anglican
Spouse Chris
Children Beccy, Anna, Cassie
Profession Bishop

Robert John Freeman (born 26 October 1952)[2] is a British Anglican bishop. Since 2011, he has served as the Bishop of Penrith in the Church of England Diocese of Carlisle. Previously, he was the Archdeacon of Halifax (in the Diocese of Wakefield) from 2003 to 2011.[3]


Freeman was educated at St John's College, Durham, then at Fitzwilliam College, Cambridge where he trained for the Anglican ministry at Ridley Hall, Cambridge.[3]

Priestly career[edit]

Following his diaconal ordination in 1977,[2] Freeman's first appointment was as a curate at St John's Church, Blackpool,[4] in the Diocese of Blackburn, from 1977 to 1981. His next appointments were Team Vicar at Chigwell in the Diocese of Chelmsford from 1981 to 1985 and Vicar of the Church of the Martyrs, Leicester in the Diocese of Leicester from 1985 to 1999. From 1994 to 2003, he was an honorary canon of Leicester Cathedral. During that period he was Rural Dean of Christianity South from 1995 to 1998 and National Advisor in Evangelism for the Archbishops' Council from 1999 to 2003. From 2003 to 2011 he was Archdeacon of Halifax in the Diocese of Wakefield.[3]

Until recently he was Chair of the Christian Enquiry Agency and continues to be the Chair of the innovative

Episcopal career[edit]

Freeman's nomination as Bishop of Penrith was announced on 10 June 2011, in succession to James Newcome who had been translated as the Bishop of Carlisle on 31 July 2009.[3] He was consecrated on 28 October 2011 at York Minster.[1] On 3 November 2017, it was announced that Freeman is to retire effective "Easter" 2018.[5]

Personal life[edit]

Freeman is married to Chris and they have three daughters. His interests include time spent with family, computer technology and internet development, walking and travelling, classic Motown, electric blues and rock music, computer games, reluctant gardening, reading crime and action-adventure fiction.[3]