Times religion correspondent departs after 25 years

16 May 2014

Ruth Gledhill, The Times’ religion correspondent, is departing after 25 years in the post and her role is being scrapped. The move means that there is no journalist on a national newspaper dedicated to covering religion as a sole specialism. Ms Gledhill, who was at the paper for 27 years, was a respected correspondent whose scoops included breaking the news that Rowan Williams would be appointed Archbishop of Canterbury. 

In this week's Tablet, Clifford Longley, who is a former religious affairs correspondent for both The Times and The Daily Telegraph, writes: "In the case of newspapers, they will continue to report on religion though less of it. In a subject of considerable complexity rife with public misunderstanding, experties is no longer, by and large, thought necessary. That is itslef an insidious kind of secular judgement - that making a mess of the coverage of religion is now a risk the media is prepared to run because the subject doesn't matter any more."

Meanwhile, the BBC has announced that their respected defence correspondent Caroline Wyatt is to take over the religious affairs brief, succeeding Robert Piggott, who occupied the post for a decade. Woldingham school-educated Wyatt has previously been Moscow and Parish correspondent for the BBC and said she was looking forward to “exploring the religious faultlines around the globe” along with scientific debate over religion.

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