John Smyth: a timeline

Following the Church of England’s update on 28 April 2022, we have indexed the posts on L&RUK and elsewhere which have followed the timeline of events since 2017 which was last updated on 17 January 2024.

Law and Religion UK

Update to Smyth Review: On 17 January 2024, the Church of England released a Press Release giving an update on the Smyth Review; this is reproduced in full in the post.

Smyth case: update from independent reviewer, L&RUK weekly round-up, (17 June 2023).

Smyth case: update from independent reviewer, (15 June 2023).

Safeguarding: statement by the independent reviewer in the Smyth case, The Church of England has published a further statement from the independent reviewer in the Smyth case which indicated a further delay. (18 April 2023).

Smyth Review – further update, On 13 December 2022, the Church of England posted an update on the Smyth Review. (13 December 2022).

Smyth Review update, Yet another update from the Church of England, stating “[t]here will be further updates when more precise timings are known”. (28 April 2022).

Law and religion round-up – 1st August, Church of England: Update on Smyth Review, An update on timing for the Smyth Review from the National Safeguarding Team. (1 August 2021).

Law and religion round-up – 28th February, John Smyth Review, (28 February 2021).

Lord Carey’s PTO reinstated. Statement from Lord Carey on reinstatement of his PTO by the Bishop of Oxford, (25 January 2021).

Archbishop of Canterbury: safeguarding update, On 12 November, the Church of England published an update on safeguarding complaint against the Archbishop of Canterbury. (12 November 2020).

Law and religion round-up – 3rd May, (4 May 2020). Titus Trust resigns on 9 April, six days after the Trust announced that it had reached a financial settlement with three of John Smyth’s victims.

Vicarious Liability, Law and religion round-up – 5th April, (5 April 2020). Judgment WM Morrison Supermarkets plc v Various Claimants [2020] UKSC 12, and statement by Titus Trust on reaching a settlement with three men “who have suffered for many years because of the appalling abuse of John Smyth”.

Peter Ball – the on-going legacy, (19 January 2020).

Review: Jonathan Fletcher and Emmanuel Church Wimbledon, (5 December 2019). Announcement on 5 December 2019 by Thirtyone:eight that it had been commissioned by Emmanuel Church, Wimbledon to undertake an independent lessons learnt review concerning Jonathan Fletcher and Emmanuel Church.

Safeguarding in the Church of England, Law and religion round-up 24 November 2019. Scripture Union declined to participate in the Review and The Titus Trust stated that it is restricted in its participation in the review by ongoing legal action and it is not able to engage in the Review until this has been resolved. (24 November 2019).

Church of England commissions review into Smyth case, Law and religion round-up 17 August 2019. Makin Review commissioned on 13 August 2019. (17 August 2019).

Quick Links, Law and religion round-up 21 April 2019. Some links on safeguarding (scroll down) (21 April 2019).

Law & Religion 2018 and 2019: retrospect and prospect, Coverage of IICSA hearing on Peter Ball (3 January 2019).

Peter Ball – legislation, then and now (III), What next after the IICSA Peter Ball Inquiry? (21 August 2018).

And finally… Law and religion round-up – 19th August. Comment from Andrew Brown in Church Times on the sincerity, or otherwise, of the phrase “Our thoughts and prayers are with all those affected by the news of John Smyth’s death”. (19 August 2018).

Nasty goings-on at Iwerne holiday camp, Weekly round-up on “Brexit yet again, child abuse, abortion, deposition from Orders – the usual mix…” . (5 February 2017).

Church statement: safeguarding at Iwerne Trust, Statements from the Church of England, the Archbishop of Canterbury, and the Titus Trust. (2 February 2017).

Other reports &c

New information, passed on to police, delays Makin review of John Smyth case, Church Times article, with links to other material, following statement from Church of England on 18 April 2023, supra. (18 April 2023).

Charity Commission asked to investigate Church of England safeguarding. An open letter has been sent to the Charity Commission asking it to investigate the Church of England’s safeguarding practices. The 51 signatories include lay and ordained church members, survivors, and some elected members of General Synod. Thinking Anglicans/Church Times. (15 December 2022).

Early material includes: Coltart Report on John Smyth, (1982); and the Investigative Report on John Smyth, (2017).

Last updated, 18 January 2024 at 07:59.

Cite this article as: David Pocklington, "John Smyth: a timeline" in Law & Religion UK, 3 May 2022,

One thought on “John Smyth: a timeline

  1. I’m surprised that nowhere in this timeline is there a statement from Smyth’s former Chambers (which the Times Archive indicates was 1 Crown Office Row, which still exists). As the evidence in the inquiry has indicated Smyth used mini-pupillages and shadowing him in court as a method of grooming, it’s disappointing the chambers hasn’t come forward and issued an apology and stated their intent to cooperate with the inquiry (to my knowledge, anyway).

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