Archbishop of Canterbury, Dr Rowan Williams
Media playback is unsupported on your device

Rowan Williams: Grief over women bishops vote

20 November 2012 Last updated at 21:06 GMT

The general synod of the Church of England has voted against the appointment of women as bishops.

The decision came at the end of a day of debate by supporters and opponents and a 12-year legislative process.

The measure was passed by the synod's houses of bishops and clergy but was rejected by the house of laity.

Both the Archbishop of Canterbury, Dr Rowan Williams, and his successor, the Rt Rev Justin Welby, were in favour of a "yes" vote.

Dr Williams described his grief at the "missed opportunity" and said he felt for women in ministry.