Patronage is the right to appoint or present a member of the clergy to a benefice. Patrons include private individuals, the Crown, bishops, colleges, religious bodies, charities, etc. A register of patrons is maintained at the Diocesan Registry.
A benefice may have more than one patron. Where there are two or more patrons, they may take it in turns to present a new incumbent after a benefice becomes vacant, or they make act jointly on each occasion, depending on the terms of the Pastoral Scheme which created the benefice.