The Diocese of Winchester has appointed a new Archdeacon for the city.

Reverend Canon Richard Brand is the new Archdeacon of Winchester.

His role is supporting the churches across central and north Hampshire.

Richard has been a priest for 25 years, and brings to Winchester significant experience of helping churches to work together to serve their local communities.

He was parish priest of Hambledon, serving as Diocesan Director of Ordinands, where he supported candidates through the process of discernment and training for ordained ministry.

For the last nine years he has been Team Rector, in Market Harborough in the Diocese of Leicester, chaired the Trustees of Launde Abbey, and is currently Area Dean of the Gartree Deaneries.

Richard is married to Sarah and they have three children, all of whom were born in Winchester.

He succeeds the Venerable Canon Michael Harley who retires next month, having served in the role for the last six years.

The Rt Rev Tim Dakin, the Bishop of Winchester, said: “I am delighted that Richard will be joining us at this important time in the life of the diocese. His extensive experience in parish ministry is the perfect foundation for the work he will be undertaking. As each parish puts into action its mission plans, his expertise and previous experience will be crucial.

“His pastoral experience and his proven commitment to church growth, as well as his track record of enabling churches to work together, will make him a first-class archdeacon.”

Mr Brand said: “I am delighted to be joining the diocese at this very exciting time. Winchester has a special place in my heart as the place where my children were born. I look forward to working with the many diverse and unique communities both urban and rural, across north Hampshire, helping them to find practical ways to implement their mission plans and reach out to the wider community.

“There is so much that the Church contributes through its brilliant clergy, who I will endeavour to support and encourage as they seek to proclaim the good news of Jesus Christ and participate in his mission across Winchester Diocese.”