CANON Chris Chivers is to leave Blackburn Cathedral after being named as the next vicar of a church in London.

The 42-year-old, who has spent the past five years as Canon Chancellor at Blackburn Cathedral, will take up his new duties at John Keble Church, Mill Hill, in September.

During his tenure at Blackburn Cathedral, Canon Chivers founded exChange, an award-winning education, out-reach, community cohesion, and interfaith development agency.

He has pioneered interfaith work on local, national and international stages, especially through his public dialogues with Anjum Anwar MBE, whose appointment as the first Muslim to work on the staff of a cathedral anywhere in the world was his initiative.

The married father-of-three said: “Whilst I shall miss the immense challenges and opportunities that being in Lancashire has offered, especially in relation to some of the toughest contemporary issues for our contemporary world, I know that there is so much to learn from the challenges people face in Mill Hill.

“I look forward to being with people and to what we shall be able to do together."

Canon Chivers has worked previously as a precentor at Westminster Abbey and held the same role at St George's Cathedral, Cape Town, South Africa.

He is a freelance journalist and broadcaster, a trustee of various organ-isations, a published composer and the author of several books.