A Scottish priest lost out for the second time last night in her bid to become the first female bishop in a major church in Britain.

The Rev Canon Dr Alison Peden was beaten by the Venerable Dr Nigel Peyton in an election to the post of Bishop of Brechin, one year after she missed the chance to become Bishop of Glasgow and Galloway in the Scottish Episcopal Church.

Mrs Peden was on a shortlist of five for the post, decided by an electoral synod comprising clergymen and lay church members.

She turns 60 next year, and so may still have time to be promoted should another post become available in the near future.

She will instead retain her current jobs as Rector of Holy Trinity Church, Stirling; Canon of St Ninian’s Cathedral, Perth; and Provincial Director of Ordinands.

The Lutheran Church in Great Britain already has a female bishop in the Rev Jana Jeruma-Grinberga, consecrated in January 2009.

The Church of Scotland appointed a woman to the role of Moderator of the General Assembly in 2004.

Alison Elliot, of Edinburgh, held the post for a year, the first female to do so.

The Scottish Episcopal Church, part of the Anglican faith, has allowed women to become bishops since 2003, but so far none has been appointed. Mrs Peden, married with three children, was the first to make it that far in 2010.

The Roman Catholic Church does not allow female bishops, nor even female priests. The Church of England has allowed women to be priests since the 1990s, but is still fighting over the issue of female bishops.

The post of Bishop of Brechin became vacant last year after the retirement of Dr John Mantle. The candidates for last night’s election were chosen by a committee, and interviewed by the electoral synod before the final vote.

Mr Peyton, who won the poll, is currently Archdeacon of Newark, Diocese of Southwell & Nottingham, but had previous ties to the east of Scotland.

He studied at Edinburgh University, and was a chaplain in Dundee before moving to England.

Speaking after the result was announced last night, he said: “I am honoured to have been elected and look forward to returning to serve in the diocese where my ministry began.”

A service of consecration and installation of the new bishop will take place in St Paul’s Cathedral, Dundee, at a later date.