The Return of Gaiters

I’d just like to request that you add something to your prayer list this week.

Last night at Choral Evensong, the psalmist reassured us that the Lord hath no pleasure in the strength of an horse : neither delighteth he in any man’s legs. However, I’ve a notion that the Holy Spirit in her wisdom may be about to do something wonderful. Is it not possible that on Friday at 12 noon in the blessed town of Oban, the Holy Spirit will reinstitute the wearing of gaiters to the Episcopate of the Scottish Episcopal Church?

It seems to me that Fr Kevin’s consecration as Bishop of Argyll and The Isles is the perfect moment for such a blessing to fall upon us – indeed quite possibly the only such moment for a generation.

I know that the Holy Spirit can do this all on Her own, but a few wee arrow prayers from the rest of us wouldn’t go amiss, surely.


  1. ryan says:

    Surely the best way to effect such a change is for priests and provosts to lead by example? I’m sure the Holy Spirit sometimes speaks by approving and codifying after brave, pioneering souls have took steps to change the facts on the ground? 😉

  2. “The purpose of this vesture was originally practical, since archdeacons and bishops were presumed to be mobile, riding horses to various parts of a diocese or archdeaconry. In latter years, the clothing took on a more symbolic dimension.”
    Is there something our new bishop isn’t telling us about his preferred mode of transport around our far-flung diocese?

  3. Hermano David | Brother Dah•veed says:

    I just a few minutes ago watched a video of Yes Prime Minister where they stated that gaiters were reserved for important religious occasions, such as the Royal Garden Party.

  4. annie t says:


    • In every moment of ministry of a Bishop of Argyll and The Isles, I guess one is presented with a choice between gaiters or the kilt.

      It seems to me that tartan gaiters are simply the consequence of a world which wants to have its cake and eat it and that they are probably not consistent with the Good News.

  5. agatha says:

    But it would be another blow against women bishops unless Gok Wan could be persuaded to do something clever with gaiters.

  6. No, as I’ve said elsewhere, gaiters are no more gendered garments than black clerical shirts or jolly mitres.

  7. Of those three, only mitres are gender neutral.

  8. I’m talking concept, not manufacture and design.

  9. PamB says:

    The last Provost I saw wearing gaiters was Harold “Mick” Mansbridge in the mid seventies. They made him look like an early 19thC Hampshire farmer, which is what he was, essentially. I think he’s wearing them in his Rogue’s Gallery portrait.

  10. Agatha says:

    I wasn’t suggesting women bishops couldn’t wear them “conceptually” – just that none with any fashion sense would want to.

  11. JackieH says:

    Despite appearances Mick Mansbridge’s legs carried the smartest head for buying 20th Century second-hand cars!

  12. If one uses gaiters in the hills, they are not gender-specific at all. Mine aren’t, anyway…

  13. I’m sure you cut a dashing figure, Chris.

  14. Agatha says:

    “I’m unsure how seriously we should link fashion sense and vocation.”

    I can’t believe the real Kelvin has posted that with all the previous stuff about black shoes, copes of gold etc. I thought it was a prerequisite.

  15. Zebadee says:

    ‘Dancing the Gay Gordons with a Bishop’ Was the said Bishop wearing gaiters be they tartan or otherwise? The world needs to know

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