Statement on the Rev David Beater

Statement on the Rev David Beater

First published on: 24th August 2021

On Monday 23 August, 2021 the Rev David Beater, a former vicar in the Diocese of Rochester, was sentenced to four and half years in prison, for a number of sexual offences against children.

These offences took place in the 1980s and relate to his time when he was vicar at St Boltolph's Church, Northfleet. 

Following the sentencing, the Rt Rev Simon Burton Jones, Bishop of Tonbridge issued the following statement:

“We are deeply saddened and appalled by the Rev David Beater’s crimes and will be keeping all those affected by his actions in our prayers.

“The victim impact statements read out in court demonstrate the devasting and lifelong impact David Beater’s abuse has had on their lives.

“We commend the bravery of those who brought these allegations forward and acknowledge how difficult this would have been. We apologise unreservedly to them for what has happened and for what they have experienced.

“The facts of this case raise concerning questions about decisions and actions taken by the Church in relation to David’s ministry. Because of this, the matter has now been referred to the National Safeguarding Team in accordance with the House of Bishops’ guidelines.

“Mr Beater is retired and has not been in active ministry for more than ten years.

“As a diocese, we take the safety and wellbeing of children and young people very seriously and have robust safeguarding procedures in place.

“Anyone with any concerns relating to this case, or any other safeguarding is encouraged to get in touch directly with one of our safeguarding advisers who will offer confidential support and advice - or to speak with someone else they trust.

"They can also contact Safe Spaces - an independent and confidential service supporting survivors of church related abuse (www.safespacesenglandandwales.org.uk / 0300 303 1056)."