Tricia Hillas appointed Canon of Westminster

Monday, 26th April 2021

Tricia Hillas, Canon of Westminster

The Reverend Tricia Hillas, Chaplain to the Speaker of the House of Commons, has been appointed by HM The Queen to serve as a Canon of Westminster.

Her ministry at the Abbey will begin on 9th May, when she is due to be installed at Evensong.

As a Canon of Westminster, Tricia joins the Dean and Chapter, which oversees the work of Westminster Abbey – it comprises the Dean of Westminster, and four Canons of Westminster, supported by the Receiver General.

Tricia will fulfil this role whilst continuing to act as Chaplain to the Speaker of the House of Commons, Sir Lindsay Hoyle but will relinquish the role of Priest in Charge at St-Mary-at-Hill, City of London.

'A wealth of experience'

The Dean of Westminster, the Very Reverend Dr David Hoyle, said:

'It is with great pleasure that we announce today that Tricia Hillas will be joining us as a Canon of Westminster. Formerly a Canon of St Paul’s, Tricia brings a wealth of experience to the Abbey, which she has integrated into a distinguished ministry as prophet, priest and pastor.
We will all benefit from her company and her counsel. It is, of course, also a delight to reunite the roles of Speaker’s Chaplain and Canon of Westminster. Here is a signal of a renewed commitment in Parliament and in the Abbey to work together for the good of all.'

'A great privilege' 

The Reverend Tricia Hillas, said:

'The opportunity to serve in a combined role as a Canon of Westminster and as Chaplain to the Speaker of the House of Commons is a great privilege and one that I am truly overjoyed to take up.
Over the past year I have been made so welcome within the Parliamentary community and I am especially grateful to Mr Speaker for his lively support, wisdom and encouragement. Now, with great relish, I look forward to contributing to the vital life and ministry of the Abbey, whilst continuing to support the significant and demanding work of those who serve in the Commons.
I’d specifically like to express my thanks to the people of St Mary at Hill, whom I joined only a little before the first lockdown began. I am grateful that we were able to work, pray and encourage one another during the most challenging of times.'

'An amazing source of warmth, reassurance and pastoral support'

Sir Lindsay Hoyle, Speaker of the House of Commons, said:

‘I want to add my congratulations to Tricia on her appointment as a Canon of Westminster. She has been a breath of fresh air here in Parliament as Speaker’s Chaplain, and an amazing source of warmth, reassurance and pastoral support to MPs and staff during a very difficult and challenging time. I am so pleased she will be sharing her wise counsel with our neighbours in the Abbey, and in doing so reinforcing and reuniting the two historic roles.’ 

About Tricia Hillas

Born in Kuala Lumpur to an Indian mother and a British father, Tricia Hillas moved to the UK with her family in 1971. She was ordained in 2002 following a career as a youth and social worker, part of which she specialised in supporting those diagnosed with HIV and AIDS. Before becoming Chaplain to the Speaker of the House of Commons she was Canon Pastor at St Paul's Cathedral.

Photo courtesy: Graham Lacdao