In May 2023 a leaked report  written by a leading Methodist, Meg Munn, revealed that a  culture of discrimination and sexism is rife within the Methodist Church. The report  claimed that  women in the Church are being 'belittled' by lewd men with a 'misogynistic and toxic' attitudes”.

The culture that Meg Munn exposed is the same immoral culture that Jane Stacey took note of a decade ago during her review of sex abuse cases in the Church.

However, we only have the leaked report – the Church will not publish the original copy of Meg Munn’s allegations.    Perhaps Church House is uncomfortable with the allegation that “Some men are comfortable with having the misogynistic privilege and are content to benefit from it.”


This is the unacceptable face of the Methodist Church to which you belong.

Meg Munn has been a member of the Methodist Church for some 30 years. She is the Chair of the Church of England’s National Safeguarding Panel.  As a member of Parliament, she was the Chair of the now defunct Methodist All-Party Parliamentary Group. During the first decade of the century, in the Blair government, she held the post of Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State (Women and Equality). In that role she  established the Equality and Human Rights Commission and saw through the Equality Act of 2006. She later gave evidence which was incorporated in the Equality Act of 2010.

She is a leading female member in the Methodist Church. As a strong proponent of human rights, she knows a breach of human rights when she sees one.

The Equality Act that she promoted is an integral  part of the nation’s  human rights legislation. It outlaws direct or indirect discrimination and harassment in employment, vocational education and the provision of goods and services. It protects people from abuse by employers.

Unfortunately, the Supreme Court’s decision in 2013 -  that Methodist Ministers are not employed by the Church  - largely took away the protection  that ministers enjoyed under the Equality Act.  The consequence of this is that it is not unlawful for  the Methodist Church to act in such a discriminatory manner. Meg Munn cannot be happy to see that the Church she loves so well is legally capable of such misogynistic discrimination.

While the national Press carries such lurid headlines, the true significance of this leaked report has been overlooked. The leak shows that there is a growing revolt among decent Methodists against those in power within the Church.

It is clear that some people in the upper reaches of the Church hierarchy have had enough of the cover-ups that those they work with have created over the past two decades. The old rules of confidentiality are being overturned  - in order to save the sagging reputation of the Methodist Church.

The scandal is not confined to a few cases where an overbearing man has dominated a frail female. The malady is systemic. There is discrimination over gender, age - and anyone who will not shut up about the Church's ills. A Church that proclaims its "justice, openness and honesty" (Standing Order 1100. 2) consistently hides its dirty secrets.

The current leak alleges that the Methodist Church can no longer be “seen as a safe place'. The case studies show that senior leaders are guilty of a 'failure to respond' to allegations of abusive or discriminatory behaviour. Where have we heard that before?

Most significantly, such quotes clearly come from persons deep inside Church House. If this were not so, newspapers such as the Times would not rely upon them.

The background to the Munn  report is of particular interest. It began with just one case. The review was set up after Rev Steven Wild, the District Chair in  Cornwall  was suspended with full pay in September 2021 while an investigation took place into his conduct.


Rev Wild said he was 'deeply saddened' at his treatment by the Church. He said “I categorically deny that I have ever - or would ever - intentionally behave in a way that would bring the Church that I have loved and faithfully served for over 40 years into disrepute.”

This may well be so, for Steve Wild was – and is - a popular figure in the South West. However, there is another possible aspect of his story.

Rev Wild was stationed as Chair of the Cornwall District in 2008.  In his first year in the post the District began the case of Rev Hayley Preston, the Superintendent minister in Redruth.  There had been some local criticism of her.


Harley Preston suffered a sorry fate. Proper procedure, as in the Standing Orders,  was not followed and discrimination  occurred as a result.  Instead of allowing Rev Preston  to answer the complaints against her,  the Church decided to simply abolish her station. Hayley Preston was thus removed without any further difficulty.  Her critics had got rid of her. 

It seemed to some that the mission of the Church in Cornwall was more important than the human dignity of the Superintendent in Redruth.

To this day we do not know why Hayley Preston was discriminated against in this manner. However, because of the current scandal of the leaking of Meg Munn’s report,  we now know that such discrimination against women has actually taken place. We also know that a "cover-up" has been instigated - for why else would the report need to be "leaked"?.

Furthermore, we now know that the accusations of women being “belittled' by lewd men with a 'misogynistic and toxic' attitude” are being attributed, in part, to the Methodist Church in Cornwall.

Meg Munn may have a further, and more personal,  interest in the misogynistic and toxic attitudes that she sees in the Church. She was born in Sheffield and grew up in the Methodist Church there. Nine miles north of Sheffield lies Rawmarsh, the location of another potential story of discrimination against women.

This is the recent case of Superintendent Joanne Archer-Siddall.


Well-loved, particularly by the older members of the local churches, Joanne has been so mis-treated that she is afraid to speak of the  problems which caused her resignation. Nevertheless the Church’s treatment of her has become a local scandal in South Yorkshire. 

Friends claim that her resignation was the result of mismanagement, prejudice – along with a fair deal of favoritism and corporate ideology in the Church. They say that “cover up” is the name of the game, and those who hold power in Church House are always protected. 


Meg Munn must know that the Methodist Church has lost a valuable asset in Joanne Archer-Siddall. Yet there is little that ordinary Methodist church-goers can do about mismanagement, prejudice and favoritism in the South Yorkshire District.


This website is an attempt to help restore the reputation of the Methodist Church. It is the only organ where such issues are raised within the confines of the ministry. Readers of the Methodist Recorder will be surprised by this. At the time of writing, the Recorder has not mentioned the leaked report, nor the scandal that it reveals.


Elsewhere on this site there is an account of an inquiry by the Charity Commission. It was prompted four years ago by the egregious details of the case of Rev Peter Timms. Rev Timms was removed from the ministry by unfair tactics including a false confession which he was expected to sign. The Commission decided that one case history was not enough for it to take action.


After the leaking of the Meg Munn report, the Charity Commission is now returning to the question of  human rights in the Methodist Church. In response to the leaked report, it issued a statement:


“A charity should be a safe and trusted environment for all. We are assessing concerns recently raised in the media to determine if there is a role for the Commission.”


This appears to be a reference to the allegation in the “Times” that the Methodist Church can no longer be “seen as a safe place”.


In response to this, a Church House spokesperson stated to the Press:


“We will study the recommendations of this report carefully and use them as we continue our work to improve our response to survivors of abuse.”


Some may see this as ironic. Some ten years ago, in the aftermath of the Stacey Review into sex abuse,  the Methodist Church produced similar worthy remarks from  Tim Carter, the Head of the Safeguarding Committee.


Tim Carter committed the Church to:


“the establishing of safe, caring communities which provide a loving environment where there is informed vigilance as to the dangers of abuse.”


The Safeguarding Committee also formulated its general principle that:


“The Methodist Church is guided by the following foundations:  

a)   the gospel and    

b) human rights, international and national law”



The leaked Meg Munn report details many instances when the Equality Act – an integral part of our human rights legislation – was overlooked or even ignored by the Church authorities. A decade after Tim Carter’s promises, they are turned to dust.  

Meg Munn is the Chair of the Church of England’s National Safeguarding Panel. How can she now defend her Church to other members of that panel? This scandal threatens all the discussions about a merger with the Anglican Church. It thus threatens the whole future of the Methodist Church.

The fact that the Munn report had to be leaked demonstrates that a brave and  altruistic person of senior rank is willing to risk the dire consequences that may follow any such action.  This is a desperate situation.  The leaker must be fully aware that, if he or she is identified, dirty tricks may well be employed against them by the Church. They may be subjected to the "Star Chamber" and be removed from the Church. 

Readers will recall that Church House even tried to have the writer of this website imprisoned because they wished to "hush up" the Peter Timms scandal. The Methodist Church complained to the police in Hatfield (where the connexional complaints panel leader Chris Kitchin was a magistrate) that Peter Hill had harassed  Kitchin by visiting him at his home. In fact the visit was an attempt at finding peace and reconciliation. Hill was interviewed by the Police at length under caution and threatened with 6 months in prison. However, when the Police heard his side of the story, they dropped all the charges they had prepared. (See article entitled "Peace? Forget it! elsewhere on this site)

Thus, whoever leaked the Meg Munn report may find themselves in very hot water.

Surely it is now only a matter of time before eminent Methodists, such as Lord Beith and Lord Griffiths, step in to rid the Church of those who have no regard for the human dignity of Methodist Church members?