Lead Armed Forces Champion announced

First published on: 4th June 2024

Photo: The Rev Jim Horton has been announced as the new Lead Armed Forces Champion for the Diocese

Bishop Jonathan Gibbs, the Bishop of Rochester,  is delighted to announce that The Rev Jim Horton, Vicar at Hadlow Benefice, has accepted his invitation to become the Lead Armed Forces Champion for the Diocese of Rochester.

In this role, Jim will help take forward the commitments made by both the Diocese and Rochester Cathedral when they signed the Armed Forces Covenant in October last year.

Photo: Dean Philip Hesketh and Bishop Jonathan Gibbs join Lieutenant General Sir Tyrone Urch KBE, Chief Royal Engineer, in signing the Armed Forces Covenant at a service in Rochester Cathedral (Credit: Royal Engineers)

The Covenant confirms the commitment of both the Cathedral and the Diocese in ensuring that their working practices recognise the contribution that military service personnel, both regular and reservist, veterans, cadets, and military families make to both institutions, the community, and to the country.

Reflecting on the role, The Rev Jim Horton says:

“The commitment to service is at the heart of the gospel and a central aspect of being part of the Armed Forces Family; Regulars, Reserves, Veterans and the Cadet Forces.

"I look forward to helping to move forward the diocese’s commitment to the Armed Forces Covenant and making even closer links with the military community.”

If you would like to find out more about the Armed Forces Covenant, please visit 

More about Jim

Jim has seven years regular service in the Royal Air Force. He is currently Area Chaplain (Southern Area) of the Sea Cadet Corps, which covers Oxfordshire, Buckinghamshire, Berkshire, Surrey, Kent, Sussex, Hampshire, Dorset, Wiltshire, Isle of Wight, Jersey Guernsey and the Falkland Islands

His other Armed Forces connections include:

  • Hon Chaplain RAF Supply Commandos, Tactical Supply Wing Association
  • Chaplain LGBTQI Branch Royal British Legion
  • Service Champion Armed Forces Network (NHS)
  • Former County Chaplain Sussex Royal British Legion
  • Former County Chair Sussex RBL
  • Former Area Chaplain Royal Naval Association


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