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Chelmsford, diocese of

Chelmsford, diocese of. The present see, created in 1914, is conterminous with Essex. In 604 Augustine consecrated Mellitus bishop of London to convert the East Saxons, but success was short-lived. In c.650 Oswiu, king of Northumbria, sent Cedd as Celtic bishop of the East Saxons with two centres, at Tilbury and Ythancaestir near Bradwell. The Essex see was independent until 675, when Bishop Eorcenwald moved to London. After that Essex remained within the London diocese until the 19th cent., though Simon Sudbury, bishop of London (1362–75), resided in Essex, where he was better known. In 1845 Essex was removed from the overpopulated London diocese and united with Rochester, only to be transferred again to the new see of St Albans in 1877. With the creation of the see of Chelmsford in 1914, Essex again had a bishop of its own. The cathedral is the former 15th-cent. parish church with 19th-cent. additions.

Revd Dr William M. Marshall

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