The Bishop of Durham is to retire, it has been announced this morning.
The Right Reverend Tom Wright, will step down on August 31.
Dr Wright, who will be 62 this autumn, is returning to the academic world, and will take up a new appointment as research professor of New Testament and Early Christianity at the University of St Andrews in Scotland.
"This has been the hardest decision of my life," said Dr Wright.
"It has been an indescribable privilege to be the Bishop of the ancient diocese of Durham, to work with a superb team of colleagues, to take part in the work of God's kingdom here in the North-East, and to represent the region and its churches in the House of Lords and in General Synod.
"I have loved the people, the place, the heritage and the work.
"But my continuing vocation to be a writer, teacher and broadcaster for the benefit (I hope) of the wider world and church, has been increasingly difficult to combine with the complex demands and duties of a diocesan bishop.
"I am very sad about this, but the choice has become increasingly clear."
Dr Wright, a lifelong Newcastle United fan who was born in Morpeth, Northumberland, has been Bishop of Durham since 2003.