Express & Star

Bells to ring out in honour of retiring Dean

A peal of bells will ring out at a special service to mark the retirement of the Dean of Lichfield.

The Dean of Lichfield Rev. Adrian Dorder will be retiring on March 31

The Lichfield and Walsall Archdeaconry Society will ring a special peal of bells on Saturday, February 18 at Lichfield Cathedral in honour of the Dean of Lichfield, Rt. Rev. Adrian Dorber, who is retiring on March 31 after 17 years in the role.

During his time, Dean Dorber has made an enduring impact on the Cathedral, its community, and cathedrals around the UK.

He led art programmes, restoration projects and new installations and, under his direction, Lichfield Cathedral was the first cathedral to serve as a Covid-19 vaccination clinic.

A staunch advocate for Cathedrals, Dean Adrian took on the chairmanship of the Association of English Cathedrals between 2015 and 2022, the National Cathedrals Conference in 2018 and 2022, and the group that produced the report ‘Spiritual Capital – the present and future of English Cathedrals’.

He has worked to raise the profile of Cathedrals nationally and help Cathedrals understand the vital role they play.

His efforts to build better ecumenical relationships saw him become an Ecumenical Scholar at Tantur Ecumenical Institute, and reinstatement of the Shrine of St Chad at Lichfield Cathedral.

The Dean’s last Sunday at the Cathedral will be Sunday, February 19 when a thanksgiving service will be held at 3.30pm.

People can express their best wishes to Dean Dorber through signing a Book of Thanksgiving, which will be in the Cathedral until February 18, with messages also able to be left online at

Following Dean Dorber's retirement on March 31, Rt. Rev. Jan McFarlane will take on the role of Acting Dean of Lichfield until a new Dean of Lichfield is appointed.

The Bishop of Lichfield, Dr Michael Ipgrave said: “Adrian has served the cathedral, the wider community of Lichfield and our diocese with great commitment, faith and passion for the past 17 years and we will be sad to see him leave but happy for him in his well-earned retirement.

"We look forward to celebrating Adrian’s time in Lichfield on February 19.”

“I am very thankful to Bishop Jan for agreeing to be Acting Dean while the process to find Adrian’s successor gets underway.”

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