THE new Archbishop of York has declared that Jesus was a black man and the Church of England's leadership is still too white.

Stephen Cottrell, who will be inaugurated by Zoom conference this Thursday, was speaking out in support of Black Lives Matter in an interview in yesterday's Sunday Times magazine.

The magazine said he wanted to 'stand alongside and celebrate Black Lives Matter, and was in no doubt Jesus would have joined in their protests.

He said: "Jesus was a black man and he was born into a persecuted group in an occupied country.

"The leadership of the Church of England is still too white, and I hope under my watch we'll see further changes on that."

The Archbishop also claimed the country's leaders had 'let us down,' saying he despaired of a political culture that could not see beyond the five-year term of the next election.

"We should be voting for politicians who, even if we may disagree with them, we can at least acknowledge that their political ideas arise out of an ethical, moral vision for what the world should be like, and where we don't see that, where you see politicians who seem only interested in power, that's deeply, deeply worrying."

He said the pandemic offered an opportunity to 'reset our compass' adding: "What I long for are leaders who can be brave enough to have a big vision, about the whole way we inhabit life."

He warned of the dangers of extremism rising up, as had happened in the 1930s when the depression led to the rise of fascism, but said he was generally hopeful for the world and human race.