Clergy and Chapter

Clergy and Chapter

The principal clergy at Peterborough Cathedral are the Dean and the residentiary canons. These four, and four lay people appointed by the Bishop, form the governing body or Chapter of the Cathedral. The Dean and Chapter are supported by the Cathedral staff.

The Very Revd Chris Dalliston, Dean of Peterborough
Very Revd Chris Dalliston, Dean of PeterboroughThe Very Revd Chris Dalliston was installed as Dean of Peterborough in January 2018. Prior to taking up his appointment he was Dean of Newcastle for 14 years, where he oversaw significant improvements in the Cathedral’s facilities for visitors and worshippers, and led a partnership with the City Council and others to re-invigorate the historic heart of the city.

Chris has his roots in the east of England. He grew up in Norfolk, studied at Cambridge University and served in the Diocese of Chelmsford for the first 12 years of his ministry. Before going to Newcastle he was Vicar of St Botolph’s Church at Boston in Lincolnshire (known as ‘the Stump’) from 1995-2003.

Chris was born in 1956 and brought up at Diss in Norfolk. He studied Modern History at Peterhouse, Cambridge, then worked for the Ford Motor Company from 1978 to 1981 before entering St Stephen's House, Oxford to study theology and train for ordination. He was ordained Deacon in 1984 and Priest in 1985, and served his curacy at St Andrew with Holy Trinity, Halstead, Essex. From 1987 to 1991 he was Chaplain to the Bishop of Chelmsford, and from 1991 to 1995 Vicar of St Edmund’s Church at Forest Gate in London.

Chris is married to Michelle and has four adult children, Alex, Tom, Georgie, and Bella. Michelle is also ordained and is Interim Vicar of Higham Ferrers with Chelveston-cum-Caldecott in the Diocese of Peterborough. He lists poetry and music (especially jazz, folk and opera) among his interests. He and Michelle love Italy and all things Italian. He is a keen follower of Formula 1 and a (very) long suffering supporter of Norwich City FC.

Dean's PA
01733 355316

Revd Canon Sarah Brown, Canon Missioner

Canon Sarah BrownThe Revd Canon Sarah Brown was installed as Canon Missioner in January 2018.

Before taking up her post at Peterborough Cathedral, Sarah was Team Vicar of Daventry with Special Responsibility for Braunston, Welton and Ashby St Ledgers and Rural Dean of Daventry. Prior to this she served her curacy in the benefice of Welford, Sibbertoft and Marston Trussell whilst also heading up the national charity, Farm Crisis Network (an ecumenical Christian voluntary organisation since renamed Farming Community Network, or FCN). She has also worked in the ministry training section of the Diocesan Office in Northampton.

Sarah never intended to become a priest and was brought up in a non-church family. In her youth and early adulthood she never considered the possibility that God might be real, let alone of any relevance whatsoever to her or anyone else. Today, in her early fifties, she still has lots of questions but sees God at work in the most unexpected places and people, including herself.  Read more

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Read Sarah's Cathedral Blog

Revd Canon Dr Rowan Williams, Precentor

The Revd Canon Dr Rowan Williams was installed as Precentor in September 2018.

Rowan first became interested in liturgy and music as a student at King's College, Cambridge, where she studied for a BA in modern languages and sang in as many choirs as possible. During her year abroad, she taught English in a German secondary school, and translated the lyrics of Captain Noah and his Floating Zoo into German for the school choir!

Her professional background is in residential care – working with adults with multiple disabilities and dementia. She then spent seven years as a member of the Community of St Francis, an Anglican religious order, before training for ordination.

Rowan was ordained in the Diocese of Leicester in 2005, where she worked in a deprived urban parish, and then as a hospital chaplain, with a particular interest in palliative care. During her curacy she began studying for a PhD in early Franciscan theology, which took seven years to complete (and may become a book one day). She is just finishing a Masters in English Church Music from the University of York, which was a lot quicker and a lot more entertaining to write. She has also written two books – one on Franciscan spirituality and another on the theology of chaplaincy. Immediately prior to taking up her role as Canon Precentor, Rowan spent nearly nine years as Chaplain to the University of York.

Rowan is an enthusiastic, if occasionally despairing, supporter of Welsh rugby; she also used to have a season ticket to Leicester Tigers, after whose ground her cat Welford is named. She also enjoys horses, languages, books and coffee.

01733 355315

Revd Canon Tim Alban Jones, Vice Dean and Chaplain to the Bishop of Peterborough 

Born near London, Tim lived his early life in the home counties and South Wales before moving to South Africa for three years.  The family returned and settled in Gloucestershire where Tim and his twin brother went to Wycliffe College.  On leaving school at 17 Tim spent some time in the USA before his degree in history at the University of Warwick.  He went straight from university to Ripon College Cuddesdon where he spent three years preparing for ordination.

Tim was ordained in Hereford in 1988 and served his curacy in the parish of St Paul’s, Tupsley where he met and married his wife Cathy, a Nurse Consultant in Palliative Care.  From there he became a Team Vicar in the Ross-on-Wye Team Ministry with responsibility for four very rural parishes. After just over seven very happy years Tim and his family moved to Soham where they have spent the last fifteen years.  During his time in Soham, the parish was thrown into the media limelight with the murder of the two school girls.  He was awarded an MBE in recognition of his ‘service to the community’. He has also served on General Synod, as a Rural Dean, Warden of Readers and chair of the House of Clergy as well as various other diocesan committees.

Tim and Cathy have three grown up children. Tim’s interests include music, cooking, liturgy and reading.

01733 887014

Revd Canon Ian Black, Vicar of St. John the Baptist, Peterborough, and Canon Residentiary at Peterborough Cathedral

Reverend Canon Ian Black, Canon Residentiary

As well as being one of the residentiary canons, Ian is also vicar of the city centre parish church of St John the Baptist, which faces the Cathedral across the square, and Rural Dean of Peterborough. As Vicar of Peterborough, this joint post aims to integrate the Cathedral's and parish's relationship with the city and civic life.

Prior to ordination, Ian had a career as a PAYE auditor with the Inland Revenue and as a tax accountant with a firm of accountants.  He trained for ordination at Lincoln Theological College and Nottingham University, being ordained in Canterbury Cathedral in 1993.

He has held posts including vicar of a group of parishes ten miles north west of Canterbury, being a minor canon of Canterbury Cathedral, prison chaplaincy and a curacy in the town centre parish in Maidstone. Ian has worked with many curates as a training incumbent and a training officer looking after their first years after ordination.

Ian moved to Peterborough in 2012 after ten years as vicar of a large parish on the eastern edge of Leeds, where he was also the external member of Ripon Cathedral Chapter.

Ian is a published author and his latest book Follow me: living the sayings of Jesus (Sacristy Press 2017) draws connections between what Jesus said and how we live today in all its messiness and complexity.  He has previously written three books of prayers: Intercessions for the Calendar of Saints and Holy Days(SPCK 2005), Intercessions for Years A, B & C (SPCK 2009) and Prayers for All Occasions (SPCK 2011), all available from the Cathedral shop.  He has been writing online since the late 1990s and has his own blog –

Ian is married with two sons.

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The Chapter of Peterborough Cathedral

Dean of Peterborough

The Very Reverend Chris Dalliston

Residentiary Canons

Reverend Canon Doctor Rowan Williams, Canon Precentor
Reverend Canon Sarah Brown, Canon Missioner
Reverend Canon Tim Alban Jones, Vice Dean (also Chaplain to the Bishop of Peterborough) 
Reverend Canon Ian Black (also Vicar of St. John the Baptist, Peterborough)

Lay members

Lay Canon Mark Constant
Mrs Jackie Matthews
Mr Phil Rolfe
Mrs Maria Steele

Further information

For further information about Chapter or to contact a member of the Cathedral clergy, please contact:

The Cathedral Office
01733 355315

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