Bishop to lose castle home

James Newcome was the Bishop of Penrith for seven years. The castle residence of the Bishop of Carlisle is too expensive to maintain, Church Commissioners have decided.

Recently appointed bishop, the Right Reverend James Newcome, is now to be found alternative accommodation and a review of the castle undertaken.

The decision follows a reported maintenance bill of almost £2m for Rose Castle which dates back to 1340.

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The 14-bedroom castle, near Dalston, may now be put up for sale as the commissioners try to cut costs.

Andrew Brown, secretary to the Church Commissioners, said: “Rose Castle is a wonderful property, but a lot of money would need to be spent to make it suitable for a home and base for the bishop’s ministry.

“There are many calls on the commissioners’ financial support for the Church’s mission and ministry and so tough choices have to be faced.

“It was not an easy decision, but with local support, the Board of Governors feels it is the right decision for the Church of England’s mission.”

An earlier review of the castle in 2008 by the commissioners, who manage the Church of England’s historic assets, revealed that parishoners wanted the bishop to live in a more accessible location.

Bishop Newcome, 55, officially takes up his post later this year after a spell as Suffragen Bishop of Penrith.

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