From 1668 to 1670 attempts were being made by the chapter to restore the ruined building; but Dean Sancroft was anxious to have it wholly rebuilt, and in 1668 he had asked Wren to prepare a design for a wholly new church.
Fearing that he might have a successor who held Arminian doctrines, he resigned the mastership in favour of John Preston, but survived him, and lived also to see the college presided over successively by William Sancroft (or Sandcroft) and Richard Holdsworth.
Soon afterwards he was elected to succeed Sancroft; but accepted the promotion with extreme reluctance, and it was deferred from time to time, at his request, till April 1691.
Bede, Autob., " about 12 Protestant ladies of gentle birth and considerable means " founded a shortlived convent, with Sancroft, then Dean of St Paul's, for director.
He was consecrated to the see of Salisbury on the 31st of March 1689 by a commission of bishops to whom Archbishop Sancroft had delegated his authority, declining personally to perform the office.
WILLIAM SANCROFT (1616-1693), archbishop of Canterbury, was born at Fressingfield in Suffolk 30th January 1616, and entered Emmanuel College, Cambridge, in July 1634.
Sancroft was a patron of Henry Wharton (1664-1695), the divine and church historian, to whom on his deathbed he entrusted his manuscripts and the remains of Archbishop Laud (published in 1695).