The Dictionary of Australasian Biography/Barker, Right Rev. Frederic
|←Bancroft, Joseph||The Dictionary of Australasian Biography by
Barker, Right Rev. Frederic
Barker, Right Rev. Frederic, D.D., second Bishop of Sydney, was the son of the late Rev. John Barker, Incumbent of Baslow, in Derbyshire. He was born in 1808, and educated at Grantham School and Jesus College, Cambridge, where he graduated B.A. in 1829. He was ordained in 1831, and was subsequently incumbent of Upton, in Cheshire, Edgehill, near Liverpool, and of his native parish of Baslow. After the death of Dr. Broughton, the first Bishop of Sydney, he was selected by the Archbishop of Canterbury to succeed him in his episcopate, and as Metropolitan of the Province of Australia. His consecration took place in Nov. 1854, and he arrived in Sydney in May 1855. For some time previously the project of introducing Synodical Church Government had been before the Church, and after the passing of the Grants for Public Worship Prohibition Act, the organisation so much desired by the clergy and laity was at length established, the first synod of the diocese of Sydney assembling on Dec. 5th, 1866, and Bishop Barker, by the constitutions of the Church, becoming its President. The diocese of Sydney made great progress under his care, and he thrice visited England in the promotion of its interests. When State aid was abolished statutory provision was made for the retention of Bishop Barker's stipend of £2,000 per annum. Under his primacy no less than seven new sees were established in Australia, viz., Perth [Western Australia] in 1856; Brisbane [Queensland] in 1859; Goulburn [New South Wales] in 1863; Grafton and Armidale [New South Wales] in 1866; Bathurst [New South Wales] in 1869; Ballarat [Victoria] in 1875; and North Queensland in 1878. His first wife died in Sydney in 1876, and he married, secondly, Mary Jane, elder daughter of Edward Woods of London, and having had a paralytic seizure, he paid a fourth visit to Europe in 1881 to recuperate his health, but died after an illness of four weeks at San Remo on April 6th, 1882. He was buried at Baslow.