THE Venerable Dr Peter Rouch has been welcomed as the new Archdeacon of Bournemouth at a special service at St Peters.

As one of two Archdeacons in the Anglican Diocese of Winchester, he serves areas in and around Bournemouth, Chandler’s Ford, Christchurch, Eastleigh, Romsey, Southampton and the New Forest.

Peter, who served as a Parish Priest in Miles Platting, Manchester before becoming Archdeacon of Bournemouth, comes to the diocese with an impressive academic record and practical experience of ministry in a tough inner city parish.

With degrees from both Oxford and Cambridge and a doctorate from Manchester, his time in Miles Platting brought him face to face with people on the edge of society and it is this combination of intellectual strength and experience of growing a church in an area of deprivation which led to him being selected as an Archdeacon.

Speaking of his role at the time of his appointment, Peter said, “I am hugely grateful to God, and the Diocese and Bishop of Winchester for the call to serve as Archdeacon of Bournemouth at a challenging yet very exciting time in the life of our church.”

“I also feel a sense of some awe at this call as I have done each time a new direction has emerged in my vocation.

“From my past I bring experience of ministry and other work in many different locations and settings, and also the crucial lesson of the need to listen to and learn from others both inside and beyond the wider church.”

“I have been very attracted by the great diversity of an Archdeaconry and Diocese in which I have also sensed great warmth.

“I look forward to developing my ministry in this context, with the churches and communities here.”