The Lords Spiritual (Women) Bill, which enjoyed cross party support in both Houses of Parliament, has passed its third and final reading. It will now receive Royal Assent and will automatically come into force after the general election.

This means that for the next ten years, women appointed as Diocesan Bishops will fill vacancies as they arise on the Lords Spiritual benches in the House of Lords.

WATCH has fully supported this Bill and is pleased that it goes some way to rectify the gender disparity on the Bishops benches in the House of Lords.

Hilary Cotton, Chair of WATCH said, “Now that women can be appointed as bishops we look forward to them playing a full part in the Parliamentary responsibilities that bishops hold. They will have much wisdom to offer in the House of Lords”.