Bishop of Newcastle asks about help for LGBT citizens facing persecution in Chechnya

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On 26th April 2017 Baroness Barker asked Her Majesty’s Government “what action they are planning to take in response to reports of the persecution and detention of LGBT citizens in Chechnya.” The Bishop of Newcastle, Rt Revd Christine Hardman, asked a follow up question:

The Lord Bishop of Newcastle: My Lords, what support have Her Majesty’s Government provided and what support do they intend to provide to the Russian LGBT Network, which is helping gay men flee Chechnya? Continue reading

Bishop of Newcastle on importance of building homes, communities, not just houses

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On 2nd March 2017 the House of Lords debated a motion from Lord Hollick “That this House takes note of the Report from the Economic Affairs Committee, Building More Homes (1st Report, HL Paper 20).” The Bishop of Newcastle, Rt Revd Christine Hardman, spoke in the debate:

Newcastle 2The Lord Bishop of Newcastle: My Lords, I warmly welcome this excellent report from the Economic Affairs Committee. My conversations with local authorities, housing associations and chamber of commerce colleagues in the north-east have endorsed the power of its analysis. The report demonstrates the complexity and long-standing dysfunctionality of the housing market with a terrifying clarity. Continue reading

EU (Notification of Withdrawal) Bill: Bishop of Newcastle highlights contribution of Newcastle University to North East economy

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Newcastle 8On 27th February 2017, Labour Peer Baroness Quin moved an amendment to the Government’s EU (Notification of Withdrawl) Bill, requiring Government to undertake an impact assessment of the impact of Brexit on the North-East of England. The Bishop of Newcastle, the Rt Revd Christine Hardman, spoke to the amendment to highlight the contribution of Newcastle University to the North-East economy. The amendment was later withdrawn after debate.


Bishop of Newcastle: My Lords, I declare an interest as a member of the court of Newcastle University. The amendment tabled by the noble Baroness, Lady Quin, and the noble Lord, Lord Shipley, asks for an impact assessment of the effect of Brexit on the economy of the north-east. When we think about that economy, perhaps our thoughts turn first to the EU funding that the economy receives and then to the manufacturing sector. But the city of Newcastle is deeply enriched by the presence of two first-class universities, and there are 50,000 students in Newcastle. Tomorrow a report will be released to the media which details the extraordinary contribution of Newcastle University to the economy of the north-east. Continue reading

Bishop of Newcastle pays tribute to late Lord Waddington

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Newcastle 3On Monday 27th February 2017, the Bishop of Newcastle, the Rt Revd Christine Hardman, paid tribute on behalf of the BIshops’ Benches to Lord Waddington, the former Leader of the House, who had died the previous week.


The Lord Bishop of Newcastle: My Lords, I would like to be associated with the comments already made about the late Lord Waddington, and to add a few words of tribute on behalf of these Benches. Although I came to the House shortly after Lord Waddington retired, I know that his Christian faith was a source of great comfort and inspiration to him. Continue reading

Bishop of Newcastle calls for substantial review of use of benefit sanctions

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Newcastle 2On 30th November 2016 Baroness Lister of Burtersett asked Her Majesty’s Government: “whether, in the light of the public debate around the film “I, Daniel Blake”, they plan to set up a review of the treatment of claimants in the social security system.” The Bishop of Newcastle, Rt Revd Christine Hardman, asked a follow up question:

The Lord Bishop of Newcastle: My Lords, given that the National Audit Office has today said that there is limited evidence that benefit sanctions work but rather that they result in “hardship, hunger and depression”, can the Minister update the House as to whether Her Majesty’s Government will now commit to a substantial review of the use and implementation of sanctions?”

Continue reading

Queen’s Speech: Bishop of Newcastle gives maiden speech

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On 25th May 2016 the House of Lords held its fifth day of debate the Queen’s Speech. During the debate the Bishop of Newcastle, Rt Revd Christine Hardman, gave her maiden speech, becoming the second female bishop to speak in the House of Lords. As well as introducing herself to the House she addressed the Government’s life chances strategy, and regional growth in the North. Her speech is below in full, alongside responses from Peers.Newcastle 5

The Lord Bishop of Newcastle: My Lords, the theological understanding of grace is of the love and mercy given to us by God because God desires us to have it, not because of anything we have done to deserve it. In these early days in your Lordships’ House, it is grace that I have experienced—wonderful kindness and a warmth of welcome from your Lordships, the staff and all who work in this place. It has been entirely undeserved but a truly heart-warming experience. It will be no surprise to your Lordships that one of the loveliest and warmest welcomes came from the late Lord Walton—a fine and godly man, and a distinguished son of the north-east.