Channel Island church in Winchester split

The Right Reverend Justin Welby The Right Reverend Justin Welby has asked the Bishop of Dover to oversee the islands

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The Channel Islands is to split with the Diocese of Winchester after the Archbishop of Canterbury intervened in a long-running dispute.

The Most Reverend Justin Welby said it was an interim arrangement.

Relations between Bishop Tim Dakin of Winchester and Jersey's Dean, the Very Reverend Bob Key, broke down over the handling of alleged abuse.

Mr Key said it ended the 500-year-old relationship between Jersey and Winchester.

The Bishop of Dover, the Right Reverend Trevor Willmott, will oversee the islands on behalf of Mr Welby.

Mr Key said: "That might not be a bad thing for island parishioners.

"Relationships sometimes reach a point where you need something fresh, new and different.

"There is a tinge of sadness that 500 years of being looked after by Winchester has come to an end but we are where we are."

In a statement the Archbishop of Canterbury said the interim arrangement had the full support of the Bishop of Winchester. He said it would be in place within a matter of weeks.

The Bishop of Dover is a former Bishop of Basingstoke in the Diocese of Winchester, and has knowledge of the islands.

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