Diocese of Portsmouth

The Archbishop of Canterbury playing samba drums at the Bay C of E School in Sandown
The Archbishop of Canterbury playing samba drums at the Bay C of E School in Sandown

Archbishop of Canterbury's visit

The Archbishop of Canterbury, the Most Rev Justin Welby, visited our diocese for three days in October. His focus was on mission, sharing the good news of Jesus and visiting churches, schools and communities across our area. He spent one day and night on the Isle of Wight and two days on the mainland. 

He met schoolchildren, prisoners, clergy, churchgoers, community leaders, serving naval personnel, chaplains, and many Christians and churchgoers who are aiming to share the love of God with others. He answered people's questions in formal question-and-answer sessions, and in face-to-face encounters. And he left impressed by the ministry being offered to people by those across our diocese.

Read more details about his visit below:

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Highlights of the Archbishop’s visit

Watch the video below to find out what happened when the Archbishop of Canterbury visited our diocese:

Timetable for the visit

The Archbishop’s visit, from October 13-15, included visits to the following venues. Read more about each by clicking on the link for each day:


  • 8:30am: Visit to Christ the King School, Newport
  • 12:30pm: Visit to The Bay C of E School, Sandown
  • 7:30pm: Q & A with the Archbishop, Holy Trinity Church, Bembridge

Read more about Day 1 here.


  • 7:30am: Breakfast with the Archbishop for clergy from across the island
  • 9:30am: Visit to HM Prison Isle of Wight
  • 1:15pm: Lunch at St Luke’s, Southsea, with community leaders
  • 3pm: Visit to family fun day, St Margaret’s Southsea
  • 5pm: Visit to HM Naval Base to meet members of the Royal Navy

Read more about Day 2 here.


  • 10am: Centenary service at St Wilfrid’s Church, Cowplain, with previous vicars, plus lunch
  • 4pm: ‘The Four’ family service at Christ Church, Gosport
  • 6:30pm: Evensong with Anna Chaplains from across the diocese, at St Peter’s Church, Petersfield

Read more about Day 3 here.