Project Canterbury

Cable Clerical Index

The Cable Clerical Index (CCI) is an index of more than 6570 Australian Anglican clergy. Only names and dates of ordination are published for those born before 01 Jan 1916.

Dr Kenneth CABLE (1929-2003) was a lecturer in the History Department of the University of Sydney and later Head of the Department and Head of the School of Divinity. Over forty years ago, he decided to organize the pieces of information about the clergy he had collected while researching Australian church history and he developed a card index system.

At first, the index was only of those clergy who served in the diocese of Sydney from 1788 to 1890, but gradually the project expanded to cover all clergy licensed in Australia from 1788 to 31 Dec 1961 the date at which the Church of England in Australia became auto-cephalous and headed by its own primate. The aim was to compile a complete biographical and career resume for every clergyman.

Initially Ken was joined in the project by his school friend the Revd Noel POLLARD (1928-1999), then Master of New College, University of New South Wales, and formerly a lecturer in church history at Moore Theological College Sydney. Noel worked through Crockford’s Clerical Directories adding clerical appointments to the cards. Noel moved to England in 1972. There he joined the staff of S John’s Theological College, Nottingham, and later became vice-principal of Ridley Theological College, Cambridge. In Cambridge he worked in the university library with its large collection of school registers and church newspapers. He also delved into the archives of university and theological colleges in England and Ireland.

Ken’s wife, Mrs Leonie CABLE, joined the project soon after it commenced. All three of them searched for ordination and licensing information in the diocesan registries across Australia, England and Ireland.

They all came to regret that the project had begun before the computer age. The future of these cards in pencil and inks, and with variable legibility, seemed unlikely to ever get into a form for publication. Funds were not available from church sources, and it required someone, who could both decipher the cards and understand the church terminology, to transcribe the information into a database.

From 1994 Ken and Leonie helped the Rev Michael BLAIN with his own historical research on the clergy of New Zealand, a project begun in 1992. With the crucial advantage of a computer, his work developed readily and was published online with Project Canterbury. In Christchurch, New Zealand, Michael much enjoyed the phone calls to Ken and Leonie in Sydney, and deeply appreciated Ken’s handwritten transcriptions of the cards of all those in the CABLE index who had also served in New Zealand.

In 2008 Michael offered to transcribe the Australian clergy cards to Word documents. This took him nearly three years, working from reams of photocopied sheets as the original cards were irreplaceable. Christine HICKTON in Napier, offered her genealogical skills to help Leonie fill the gaps in family background.

Much thanks is due to those fellow researchers in this field, too numerous to name, who have generously given their own research findings to be included in this index.

I also wish to acknowledge the co-operation of archivists and librarians in the numerous institutions where records were consulted.

Leonie Cable

Updates will be uploaded every two years from 01 Jan 2015. You are invited to use this document and provide feedback. Please send any such comment to Leonie Cable
Some entries have bracketed numbers at the end of lines. These numbers indicate the source of information, and are explained at

Background on the compilation and digitization process is offered in this narrative by the Revd Michael Blain.

The Cable Clerical Index [14.0 MB, portable document format]


Leonie Cable, as compiler of this directory, asserts her moral right to be identified as author. In accessing the information in the Directory, you agree to the following terms and conditions of use: The Directory is protected by copyright, and is maintained as a publicly available resource at no charge for individual non-commercial use, provided that this source is acknowledged. For any other use written permission is required.

Project Canterbury