A VICTIM of child abuse at the hands of a priest is calling for the Bishop of Durham to be retrained after claims he failed to respond to his complaint adequately.

The man, who has asked to be identified only as “Joe”, has written to the Durham Diocesan Safeguarding board calling for Bishop of Durham Paul Butler to be retrained before dealing with other victims.

Joe reported the abuse to Bishop Paul, who is the Church of England’s head of safeguarding, in July 2014 and received an apology from him around 18 months later. A church spokesperson said he was taking the lead in changing its policies.

Joe has also written to the House of Bishops, a body of senior members of the Church of England, ahead of a meeting in York next week calling for them to repent and act on the findings of an independent report into sexual abuse.

The Elliott Review, which looked into Joe’s case, was published in March and contained a number of recommendations calling for changes to be made to the church’s safeguarding structure and training on dealing with disclosures of abuse to be introduced.

Joe has spoken out ahead of next week’s meeting because of fears the House of Bishops will delay making changes.

An open letter to the body says: “If the bishops hope to delay changes as we are told you might, the situation will be acutely embarrassing.

“The House of Bishops need to show clearly that you are finally able to work rapidly for profound change in your culture and structure.”

He adds: “Senior leaders and bishops need to act quickly now to transform the situation for everyone. This starts with repentance and real action arising from a commitment to change.”

Joe was 16 when he was subjected to the assault in 1976 by priest Garth Moore, who died in 1990.

He made numerous complaints to senior figures in the Church of England over a period of 40 years before making the official complaint to the safeguarding team.

Last year the church confirmed that he had been given an apology and £35,000 in compensation.

A Church of England spokesperson said: "The Bishop of Durham, Paul Butler has sent a personal letter of apology to the survivor 'Joe' and has accepted all the recommendations in the Elliott Review and agrees that an action plan for implementation must be produced and enacted.

“As lead bishop for safeguarding Bishop Paul has always been committed to making the Church a safer place for all and has taken a lead in the many changes in policies and procedures within the Church in the past few years.”

Bishop Sarah Mullally will be leading a presentation to the House of Bishops next week.