The process of appointing the new Bishop
When Bishop Mike retires, the "See of Bristol" becomes vacant.
At this point, the Vacancy in See Committee is convened in the Diocese. The Vacancy in See Committee is responsible for carrying out consultations across the Diocese to inform it in the drafting of a ‘statement of needs’ for the desired profile of the next Bishop of Bristol.
However, while the process for choosing a Diocesan Bishop begins in the Diocese, the choice is not made by representatives of the Diocese alone. Six diocesan representatives are elected from the Vacancy in See Committee to work alongside representatives of the Church of England as a whole. The Sovereign (advised by the Prime Minister) makes the final appointment to the vacant see.
The nomination and appointment of a Diocesan Bishop is made through the Crown Nominations Commission (CNC), which meets at least twice per Vacancy in See. At each meeting the Chair is taken by the Archbishop of the Province for the vacancy under consideration.
The Commission identifies two candidates suitable for appointment. The preferred name is submitted to the Prime Minister by the appropriate Archbishop. The Prime Minister will then submit this name to Her Majesty The Queen for approval.