The Telegraph has also learnt that the Church of England has also commenced formal proceedings regarding Bishop Forster’s conduct. He has been reported to the Church’s disciplinary body by its most senior safeguarding watchdog Sir Roger Singleton CBE, chair of the Independent Safeguarding Authority and the Diana, Princess of Wales Memorial Fund, has brought a Church Disciplinary Measure (CDM). This can result in a tribunal or hearing overseen by the watchdog, if evidence of malpractice is found.
Following a conversation with the Archbishop of York, Bishop Forster issued a statement saying that he has “formally delegated” all safeguarding responsibility to the Bishop of Birkenhead, Keith Sinclair, with immediate effect.
“I have taken this decision in response to recent comment into my handling of the Gordon Dickenson case in 2009,” he said.
“An independent review will seek to identify where any failures in procedures arose, and what lessons can be learned and I look forward to contributing to the review and to giving a full account of my actions in relation to this matter.”
“The Diocese of Chester takes seriously its safeguarding responsibilities at every level. Whilst an independent review into my actions takes place, I recognise that I should not continue to lead the safeguarding arrangements in the Diocese.”