UK

Cameron Hails Vote On Women Bishops As 'Great Day For Equality'

14/07/2014 18:54 BST | Updated 14/07/2014 18:59 BST

Prime Minister David Cameron welcomed the General Synod's decision to back legislation allowing women bishops in the Church of England. Following the historic vote at York University Mr Cameron said it was a "great day for the Church and for equality". The move was also welcomed by Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg who called it a "watershed moment for the Church of England" and Labour leader Ed Miliband who described it as "wonderful news".

Mr Cameron, who has spoken openly about his religious beliefs in recent months, said: "I warmly welcome today's vote formally approving women bishops - a great day for the Church and for equality." Liberal Democrat leader Mr Clegg, an atheist, praised the role played by the Archbishop of Canterbury, the Most Rev Justin Welby in achieving the result.

He said: "This is a watershed moment for the Church of England and a huge step forward in making our society fairer. I would like to congratulate the strong leadership that Archbishop Welby has shown on this issue. Allowing women to become bishops is another long overdue step towards gender equality in senior positions. I welcome the Church of England's decision which means that women can now play a full and equal role in the important work of the Church."

Mr Miliband said: "Wonderful news from York where the Church of England has just voted to allow women bishops for the first time."