§ 33. Mr. Loughton
To ask the hon. Member for Middlesbrough, representing the Church Commissioners, what steps they are taking to increase recruitment to the clergy and shorten periods between incumbents in parishes. 
§ Mr. Stuart Bell
My hon. Friend will recall from my answer in December that the Archbishops Council, within whose responsibility matters such as clergy vocations fall, confirms that although the total number of stipendiary clergy in the Church of England is projected to decline on present trends the number of candidates coming forward for ordination training has risen over the last five years.
The length of time between incumbencies will depend in part upon the policy of individual dioceses. Some will wish to allow time for parishes to reflect on local pastoral needs before a new incumbent arrives.