Former Church of Scotland moderator to lead review into bullying charges lodged against the Bishop of Aberdeen & Orkney


The Independent Review into difficulties within the Diocese of Aberdeen & Orkney in the Scottish Episcopal Church is to be led by Professor Iain Torrance, Pro-Chancellor of the University of Aberdeen, president emeritus of Princeton Theological Seminary, and a former Moderator of the Church of Scotland.

The review will cover a four-year period up to the present day, and submissions will be accepted in confidence from respondents in the Diocese.

It is expected that the review will take several months to conduct and it is hoped that it will be complete by the end of the year. At its conclusion, Professor Torrance (pictured below) will submit a report to the College of Bishops. The report will also be made public to ensure transparency of the process.

The review, which was announced last month, is a fully independent process which will be conducted outside the formal structures of the Scottish Episcopal Church. It was commissioned by the College of Bishops after the Bishop of Aberdeen & Orkney, the Rt Rev Anne Dyer, was subject to unsubstantiated and anonymous allegations in the national media, and it will provide an opportunity for all relevant parties to make submissions about issues referred to within, leading up to, and arising from recent media coverage, as well as any other related issues.

It is hoped that the report will provide an opportunity for any findings to be considered for potential province-wide application.

The Primus of the Scottish Episcopal Church, Bishop Mark Strange, said: “I am very pleased that Professor Iain Torrance has agreed to lead the review of the Diocese of Aberdeen & Orkney. As a former Moderator of the General Assembly and Pro Chancellor of the University of Aberdeen, Professor Torrance has a respected place in both Aberdeen and across Scotland. His thoughtful response on being asked to take on this review is a mark of someone who will listen and offer support for all involved.”

Professor Torrance said: “In any disagreement between people, recollections vary. I will do my best to listen to as many as choose to make their perspective known to me, and to produce a synoptic account reflecting those various dimensions.”

The review will start from Monday 5 April and written submissions can be made during a one-month period from that date, with a deadline of 5pm on Wednesday 5 May. Submissions should be sent directly to Professor Torrance, no earlier than from Monday 5 April, via the dedicated and confidential e-mail address

The full remit of the Independent Review is available here.

A biography of Professor Torrance is available here.