Diocesan Advisory Committee for the Care of Churches by pFxUz5


									                            The Diocese of Hereford

            Diocesan Advisory Committee for the Care of Churches


Churches are local centres of worship and mission. The churches in England represent a
unique part of our heritage. We must therefore take great care to preserve them and
their contents for future generations, and to bring about necessary change in a
professional and sympathetic way.

There is a presumption against change to historic (i.e. listed) churches unless it can be
shown that such changes are necessary to enable the church to fulfil this role. Then a
balance has to be struck between the role of the church and the history of the building.

For the Church of England, Faculty Jurisdiction (revised in 1993, with new rules in 2000)
provides the legal framework for ecclesiastical permission for works to churches and
churchyards and their contents. This currently gives exemption from Listed Building
Consent but not from Planning Permission for alterations, which all churches need, in
common with secular buildings. Faculty Jurisdiction covers all works, including the
introduction or disposal of items, repairs and maintenance, as well as more major

An important provision in the new Rules is that there should be consultation with
appropriate secular authorities where changes to a listed building are proposed.

The purpose of this leaflet is to describe how the procedure for obtaining a ‘faculty’ (or
permission) works in this diocese, so that applications are ‘right first time’ and can be
processed with the minimum of delay for whoever is seeking permission.


A faculty is required for all repairs, maintenance and changes to a church or its
contents, with two exceptions: experimental re-ordering can be carried out under
Archdeacon’s Licence (valid for up to 15 months), and some minor items (on the list
called Matters Not Requiring a Faculty) do not require a faculty. Should a church
require temporary closure, the consent of the Diocesan Bishop must be obtained.

Generally, applications for a faculty are made by the incumbent and church-wardens on
behalf of the PCC. Private petitions can be made as well, typically for gravestones or

The decision to grant a faculty is made by the Chancellor of the Diocese, or in some
more routine cases by the Archdeacon, acting on the advice of the Diocesan Advisory

Committee for the Care of Churches (DAC). Applications should be made in the first
instance through the DAC Secretary, except for grave space reservation and
exhumations, which should be referred direct to the Registrar.

The cost of a faculty is met by the parish, except for private petitions.

In cases of genuine urgency (e.g. storm damage), it is possible for the Chancellor to give
temporary permission at short notice. Contact should be made with the DAC Secretary or
the Registrar in the first instance.

You should not begin any works or enter into any arrangements for which you are
seeking a faculty until you receive the faculty itself from the registrar.


   1. The Chancellor of the Diocese is Judge Roger Kaye QC. In cases of emergency he
      can be contacted through the Diocesan Registrar. The DAC exists to advise the
      Chancellor and applicants for faculties on the proposals put forward. It aims to
      work with the parishes and others to help them to bring before the Chancellor
      proposals which both meet their needs and are likely to be acceptable to English
      Heritage and the amenities societies. The DAC is made up of experts in a variety
      of fields related to church practice, buildings and contents, but it is for the
      Registrar and the Chancellor to interpret the law.
   2. The DAC Secretary is Mr Stephen Challenger who is based at the Diocesan Office,
      telephone number 01432 373300, fax: 01432 352952, e-mail
      s.challenger@hereford.anglican.org contact him for early advice, help in preparing
      submissions, and procedures.
   3. The Diocesan Registrar is Peter Beesley, 1 The Sanctuary, Westminster, London,
      SW1P 3JT. Tel: 020 7222 5381. The Registrar processes the petitions, issues the
      faculties and advises on complex issues. All enquiries should be addressed in the
      first instance to Stephen Borton.
   4. Every parish must appoint an Inspecting Architect or Surveyor, chosen by the PCC
      from the approved list and agreed with the DAC, to inspect its building every five
      years. The List may be obtained from the DAC Secretary. The Architect or Surveyor
      should be consulted about all but minor matters and will normally be the architect
      for all major alterations or extensions.
   5. Planning permission is likely to be required if there is to be a material change to
      the external appearance of the building, and the PCC should contact the
      conservation officer for their advice. In addition, for alterations to a listed building
      which may affect its character as a building of special architectural or historic
      interest, for works involving demolition affecting the exterior of an unlisted
      building in a conservation area or for works likely to affect the archaeological
      importance of the church or archaeological remains within the church or its
      curtilage, there must be consultation with English Heritage, the relevant national

   amenity society and the local planning authority at the same time as consultations
   with the DAC. You must notify the DAC that you have done so, state when the 28
   days statutory period of consultation ends and provide copies of any responses
   received. Some works may require consultation with the Council for the Care of
   Churches; this may be done by the DAC Secretary rather than by the parish.
6. The DAC will make a site visit to look at all major proposals with representatives of
   the parish and the architect. All major proposals will require the parish to provide:
      o   a Statement of Needs – setting out the reasons for the changes
      o   a Statement of Significance – which summarises the historical development
          of the church and identifies its important features.

   At the end of the process the DAC will recommend, make no objection to, or not
   recommend a faculty for all or part of the proposals. If the DAC considers that
   proposals will have an adverse affect on the fabric or appearance of the church it
   will inform the parish and ask them to reconsider or provide additional
   information. In some cases the DAC will not recommend a faculty, and its decision
   will be explained.

7. Here is a check-list to help you in submitting detailed proposals to the DAC:
      o   A statement giving the complete details of the proposed works
      o   Plans, specifications, quotations, photographs and drawings (with wiring
          diagrams and pipe routes) showing the current and proposed locations for
          all proposals involving re-ordering, extensions, lighting, sound systems,
          heating systems, plaques, Gardens of Remembrance, building works, etc.
          (two copies to be submitted)
      o   Samples and colour of new items, including carpets and textiles
      o   Details of contractors
      o   If the proposed works are likely to affect the organ, an electrical installation,
          or the security of the building against fire, vandalism, theft or other risks, a
          letter from the Insurance office concerned stating that the work has their
      o   For faculty works to trees you must submit a special faculty form, obtainable
          from the DAC Secretary
      o   For significant changes to a listed church, the PCC must provide a
          Statement of Needs (why the works are necessary for the worship and
          mission of the church) and a Statement of Significance (why the church
          building is historically important and what the effects of the proposals would

   8.    Faculties for exhumation or the reservation of grave spaces (which are
   normally private, rather than PCC petitions), are dealt with directly by the
   Registrar. Application should be made on forms available from the Registry.


                                             Major changes: alterations, extensions
                                             • Consult your architect
                                             • Consult within PCC and parish
                                             • Ask for DAC site visit
                                             ∙ Consult Archdeacon
                                             • Consult planning & amenity societies
                                             • Consult with English Heritage
                                             • Prepare outline proposals

Minor changes: repairs, maintenance          Consult DAC on proposals
• Consult DAC Secretary informally           • Submit outline proposals to DAC
• Consult architect                          • Prepare detailed proposals in
∙ Consult Archdeacon                         consultation with architect, PCC, DAC,
• Prepare detailed proposals                 planning and amenity societies

Put detailed proposals to DAC
• Discuss with DAC; revise as advised
• Continue discussion with PCC and parish, if appropriate
• Obtain planning consent (if needed) in parallel
• Obtain recommendation and petition papers from DAC

Petition the Chancellor
• Aim to get proposals ‘right first time’
• Submit petition to Registrar with DAC recommendation
• Display public notices for 28 days (minimum)
• Chancellor decides major matters, Archdeacon minor ones
• Permission granted (or not) with or without conditions

Start work
• Only when faculty received from Registrar
• Works should be completed within time limit or extension sought


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