Downing Street has announced today that the Venerable Jane Mainwaring is to be the next Bishop of Hertford in the Diocese of St Albans. She is currently the Archdeacon of St Albans, a post she has held since March 2020.
Although Jane has spent much of her ministry in the Diocese of St Albans – as Archdeacon, a parish priest, and a rural dean – she served her curacy in Suffolk having trained for ministry on the East Anglia Ministerial Training Course.
Having grown up in London and Essex, Jane studied Theology and Religious Studies at Leeds University. She has worked for the Diocese of Southwark’s retreat centre (while volunteering in a large church youth group in Surrey), and for the YWCA in Coventry, helping young adults move on from emergency accommodation.
Jane studied at Trinity College, Carmarthen (part of the University of Wales), researching in Church of England and Church in Wales Primary schools, whilst also being Chaplaincy Assistant, working with and supporting the students who attended the college chapel.
Jane was Curate at St Gregory’s, Sudbury in the Diocese of St Edmundsbury and Ipswich from 2000 before moving to the Diocese of St Albans to be Team Vicar of St Mark’s, Hitchin in 2003. She additionally served as Rural Dean of Hitchin from 2015 before becoming Archdeacon of St Albans in 2020.
While working at St Mark’s, Hitchin, Jane married her husband, James, a professional woodwind musician. They have two children, Elliot (17) and Amelie (14). Jane says that music “feeds my heart and soul”. She loves musicals – James plays in them – and her household is constantly full of music, as her children also engage with music in different and varied ways. Beside her love of musicals, Jane enjoys being by the sea, swimming and spending time with her friends and family.
The Bishop of St Albans, the Rt Revd Alan Smith, welcomed the announcement, saying:
“I am thrilled that Jane Mainwaring is going to be the next Bishop of Hertford. She is already well known within the Diocese, having served here as a parish priest, rural dean and archdeacon. Her deep faith and pastoral heart have endeared her to those with whom she has worked, and I have no doubt she will be a superb bishop. Please pray for her, James. Elliot and Amelie as they prepare for their move to Knebworth and Jane’s consecration, which we hope will be on Thursday 2 February 2023.”
Commenting on the news of her appointment, the Ven Jane Mainwaring said:
“Hertfordshire having been my home for the last 20 years, I couldn’t be more honoured and humbled to be given the opportunity to continue to serve the churches, schools, chaplaincies and communities of this county in this new capacity. I look forward to deepening existing relationships and establishing new ones, as we seek to share God’s love and hope together.”
The Ven Jane Mainwaring will become a bishop on 2 February 2023 (details to be confirmed in due course). The search for a new Archdeacon of St Albans will begin before Christmas.