• Peter Ball is formerly the Bishop of Gloucester and Bishop of Lewes
  • Alleged he sexually abused a number of young males between 1977-1992
  • Charges include an alleged indecent assault on a boy, aged 12 or 13
  • Ball, 82, is due to appear at Brighton Magistrates Court next month

By Luke Salkeld

PUBLISHED: 12:29 EST, 27 March 2014 | UPDATED: 20:51 EST, 27 March 2014

Peter Ball, formerly the Bishop of Gloucester and Bishop of Lewes, will be prosecuted for historic offences dating back to 1977 (file photo)

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Peter Ball, formerly the Bishop of Gloucester and Bishop of Lewes, will be prosecuted for historic offences dating back to 1977 (file photo)

 

A retired Church of  England bishop and friend  of Prince Charles has been charged with a series of  sex offences.

Peter Ball, who once described the Prince of Wales as a loyal friend after being given a place to live by him, is due to appear in court next month over sex offences and misconduct charges.

The 82-year-old former Bishop of Gloucester, who was previously Bishop of Lewes in East Sussex, will be prosecuted for alleged historic offences dating back to 1977.

Ball was enthroned as Bishop of Gloucester in 1992 at a ceremony attended by Prince Charles, and resigned in 1993.

Shortly afterwards Charles invited him to live in Manor Lodge in the village of Aller, Somerset, a property owned by the Duchy of Cornwall.

Ball said at the time: ‘He [Prince Charles] has been wonderfully kind and allowed me to have a Duchy house. The prince is a loyal friend.

‘I have immense admiration for him. He has been through horrific times and is a great person.’

Ball is understood to have moved out of the property after living there for a decade.

After his resignation he continued working in churches until 2010.

He was arrested in November 2012, when his Permission to Officiate was suspended, after a three-month investigation into the Chichester Diocese in Sussex.