When Lord Runcie, the former Archbishop of Canterbury, passed away in 2000, The Guardian described him as “the primate who discarded the Anglican image as the Tory Party at prayer”.
But has that image really disappeared? The two key indicators are the party’s representatives in Parliament, and their supporters.
As far as MPs are concerned, one of the last surveys on religious belief was back in the early 90s, when there was a clear divide between the mainly Anglican Tories and Catholic Labour MPs. It is most probably the case that the proportion of both of these has fallen over the past 20 years, although it is impossible to know the extent to which this is genuine or simply a function of how unfashionable it has become in some quarters of politics to admit to ‘doing God’.