Personal Assistant to the Archdeacon of Lancaster

This job has now expired
Diocesan Offices, Clayton House, Walker Office Park, Blackburn

The Archdeacons of Blackburn and Lancaster have the responsibility of sharing with the Bishops in the pastoral care of the clergy and their families in the Archdeaconries. They plan strategically and deliver effective pastoral organisation. They inspire, encourage and support churches to grow in line with the Diocesan Vision Statement: “Healthy Churches Transforming Communities.” The Archdeacons also have responsibilities for buildings and various legal matters.

The PA to the Archdeacon of Lancaster will work to ensure that the Archdeacon is sufficiently resourced and supported in their role. There is a high degree of confidentiality in this work.

To act as personal assistant to the relevant Archdeacon providing full secretarial and administrative support including:

  1. Diary management for the Archdeacon. This to include managing complex diary arrangements for appointments across all hours, 7 days per week, 52 weeks per year in locations across the diocese and the UK.

  2. To arrange appointments, including dealing with all matters such as venues, attendees and be responsible for booking travel arrangements for the Archdeacon.

  3. To use own initiative in responding to telephone enquiries, general correspondence and ensuring that appropriate information is brought to the Archdeacons’ attention.

  4. To work with the Archdeacon in prioritising their work including letters, emails, reports, and diary appointments.

  5. To maintain the office filing system and keep it up to date and in line with the requirements of the Data Protection Act as it applies to the Archdeacon’s files.

  6. Arrange visitation dates and venues for the Archdeacons’ Visitations, Primary and other forms of Visitation.

  7. Responsibility for ensuring Visitation documentation, including service sheets, Archdeacons’ Visitation News, legal returns, and other associated paperwork, is generated, and distributed to all parties; and that the CMS is updated in relation to churchwardens and other church officers as appropriate and the website relating to visitations and other pages relating to archidiaconal issues is kept up to date.

  8. To assist the Archdeacon in maintaining the efficient operation of the Lancaster Area Dean network.

  9. Responsibility for the electronic and hard copy distribution and return of Articles of Enquiry if implemented. Liaison with Worthers or equivalent to collect through Parish returns and agree costs with Senior team.

  10. Organisation of Parish visitations for the Archdeacon and keeping up to date records of visitations due.

  11. Supporting the Archdeacon by arranging Annual Conversations with Clergy and administering the necessary paperwork.

  12. Support the Archdeacon with any complaints, disciplinary, CDM and Safeguarding issues.

  13. To liaise with the PAs to the Bishops, DMPC secretary and Bishops Appointments secretary about parish reorganisation, parish vacancy and appointment processes and to support the engagement of the Archdeacon in these processes.

  14. To liaise with clergy, church leaders, other senior office holders, public bodies, and members of the public on behalf of the Archdeacon.

  15. Ensure the Archdeacon have the necessary information, papers and reports for meetings and events which they attend, where appropriate drafting the reports for finalisation by the Archdeacon e.g., DMPC.

  16. Research and production of information and materials to support the work of the Archdeacon, including using initiative to liaise with appropriate staff e.g., Registry to answer email queries to the Archdeacon

  17. Overseeing arrangements for Archdeacon’s Sunday worship and similar engagements.

  18. Support the Archdeacon in administering role descriptions and other work they may require.

  19. Assisting at Diocesan events which will involve some evening and weekend work. Organisation of training events for PCCs, Churchwardens etc including delivering training to PCC secretaries and administrators, ALMs, on PCC governance and Church Representation rules. Maintaining the currency of the PCC secretaries and administrator's handbook.

  20. Completing all general administration tasks as and when required. To seek ways to make the office of the Archdeacon more efficient, by developing electronic systems and communications methods, including updating the Diocesan database, working with SurveyMonkey and similar tools.

  21. Audio, copy typing and accurate minute taking at meetings.

  22. Coordination all different stakeholders' actions and monitoring progress.

  23. The post holder will be the first point of contact for anyone contacting the Archdeacons’ office and a such will need to demonstrate the ability to relate to a wide range of different people including the ability to show pastoral sensitivity and tact when required.

  24. Supporting specific areas of work which is assigned and undertaken by the Archdeacon of Lancaster, e.g., Financial Assistance Group, senior team Rural lead, Chair of the Board of Education, Vision 2026 strands.

  25. To collaborate with the other Archdeacon’s PA to ensure smooth running and effective communications between the two offices.

  26. The work will involve issues of a sensitive and confidential nature.

  27. To complete other reasonable duties as and when required including sitting on internal committees e.g., Staff Consultation Committee.

Knowledge and Skills

  1. Good level of general education –proven experience in an office/administration environment
  2. Proven ability in the use of computer programmes, in particular Word, Excel, Access and Outlook
  3. High standard of written English
  4. Ability to manage time effectively, use initiative in prioritising work and achieve deadlines
  5. Good organisational skills
  6. Willingness to accept responsibility and to take initiatives
  7. Adaptability, flexibility and ability to work as part of team
  8. Ability to deal with queries on own initiative
  9. Ability to carry out work of a confidential nature
  10. Good communication and interpersonal skills
  11. Professional manner and appearance

Attitudes and Values

  1. Respect and facilitate the aims of the Charity
  2. An understanding of the Church of England
  3. A positive attitude towards people and a commitment to equal opportunities and anti-discriminatory working
  4. A positive attitude towards training and development

The Diocese of Blackburn represents the Church of England in most of Lancashire and part of Wigan Metropolitan Borough, covering an area of 878 square miles with a population of 1.3 million.

The Diocese is made up of two archdeaconries, Blackburn and Lancaster, with a total of fourteen Deaneries.

There are 281 Churches, comprising around 226 parishes, with around 250 clergy (c. 200 stipendiary) and 230 licensed Readers.

Outline of Terms and Conditions

Employer: Blackburn Diocesan Board of Finance

Salary: £22,383.96 per annum

Hours: 31 per week

Location: Clayton House, Blackburn, BB1 2QE

Annual leave: Entitlement of 25 days (not including statutory bank holidays) in the first year of employment rising by 1 day per completed calendar year up to a maximum of 30 days per year. Pro rata for part-time employees. The holiday year runs from 1 January to 31 December.

References: Appointment will be subject to the receipt of satisfactory references.

Probationary period: The appointment is subject to the satisfactory completion of a six-month probationary period.

Notice Period: During the six-month probationary period four weeks’ notice is required on either party. Thereafter you will be required to give three months’ notice should you wish to resign.

Expenses: Working expenses are paid at the diocesan rates.

Right to work: The post-holder must have the right to reside and work in the UK.

Diversity - The Board of Finance believes that diversity enables us to thrive and develop and is committed to race equality, welcoming applications from UK Minority Ethnic backgrounds

The Board of Finance is committed to safeguarding and promoting the welfare of children, young people and vulnerable adults. All post holders and volunteers are expected to share this commitment

The job description attached is for both Archdeacon`s PA`s.

Next Steps

For an informal chat bout this role please contact Gill Beeley at

Please do not apply using the pathways website - please visit the general vacancy website by following the link below to apply :

General vacancies | The Diocese of Blackburn (