News, Funding and Training


News on Pew Adaptation

What to do about pews? Remove them? Adapt them? Love them?

This is about a church where the pews have become movable assets. It’s Terrington St Clement parish church in Norfolk where the Victorian pews are now on mobile metal frames. read more here.

Culture x Climate  Culture x Climate is a global forum for arts, culture and heritage-based climate action. If you'd like to learn more about climate action, science and policy, then explore their Climate Heritage Mobilisation Webinars and November Dialogues. If you would like to network with colleagues in your region, then join the action-oriented Regional Climate Heritage Forums

A guide to Scotland's burial sites Scotland's burial sites are not simply records of people who lived and died. They show how we evolved as a society and provide glimpses into  our past, and contain some of our oldest architectural remains. In our latest blog, discover what we can learn from the incredible variety and rich, historical records found in Scotland’s burial sites. 

House of Good Report from the National Churches Trust

Our ground-breaking report demonstrates that the total economic and social value that church buildings generate in the UK is at least £12.4 billion per year which averages around £300,000 per church. That is roughly equal to the total NHS spending on mental health in England in 2018. We believe that these findings are remarkable. They show that our churches are not just Houses of God. They are also Houses of Good – good that we risk losing if church buildings are not kept in good repair, and may never be able to replace. Please find the report here

ExploreChurches want your feedback  Covid19 has thrown a lot of us into self reflection. ExploreChurches are using the opportunity to conduct a review of their tourism work. They would appreciate your input: please take 5 minutes to complete one or both of these surveys. 

If you are from or volunteer at a church please fill in this survey

If you enjoy visiting churches please fill in this survey

Taylor Pilot Review report published on 3 October 2020. Overall, the evidence demonstrates the potential effectiveness of the main findings of the Taylor Review – Fabric Support Officers, Community Development Advisers and the Minor Repairs Fund – and suggests that there is merit in considering further how the elements of the pilot as described in this evaluation report can be taken forward.

The Taylor Review Pilot Team have put together some advisory documents and templates based on what they learnt from working closely with people looking after listed places of worship. These can be assessed along with the Maintenance Checklist trialed during the pilot here 

Heritage and Diversity The Heritage Alliance is working on a new report and project on ‘Diversity and Inclusion and the Heritage Sector’. It will look at the challenges faced by the heritage sector in fostering inclusive practices, as well as the solutions adopted by each organisation, best practices and free resources available online.  If you have an interesting perspective or case study you would like to share, please contact Iona.

Cytun: Churches together in Wales - Policy Bulletin - October 2020

Please find the October edition of Cytûn's Policy Bulletin here in both Welsh and English. This edition includes a number of interesting articles relating to property matters. We hope you find it interesting.

Roving Reporter from the Heritage Alliance - Engaging with Virtual Open Days. See the article here

Garfield Weston: Shared Insights a year on: Further lessons from the internal and external evaluations of the Weston Anniversary Fund programme As part of their 60th Anniversary celebrations in 2018, the Garfield Weston Foundation launched a first time-limited grants programme, the Weston Anniversary Fund (WAF), which offered grants worth between £30,000 and £150,000 to improve or create facilities of benefit to local communities across the UK. Keen to understand the impact of their work and to share insights that might be useful to the wider philanthropy sector, they have published a second report which looks at the extent to which this funding is meeting their primary goal to make a tangible and lasting difference in communities across the country. Details here

SPAB National Maintenance Week: 20-27th November 2020 The SPAB's annual campaign to get owners and managers of historic buildings looking at maintenance before the winter is back this November. Details here . The campaign will be supported by a number of free online events. Of interest, is Maintenance Question Time at 11am on 21 November. If you would like to send in a question, email by 5pm on 16 November.  And the pre-recorded lecture; Maintenance in Faith Buildings, which will be available as a watch on demand recording during National Maintenance Week.

FaithAction: Community Cohesion Regional Roundtables The current crisis has provided an excellent opportunity for faith groups and local authorities to work together to tackle the problems and issues raised by our nationwide lockdown at a local level. FaithAction are organising Regional Roundtables to talk about how faith groups and local authorities have been working together in the regions. Find out about the dates for your Region. Details here

Building Dementia Friendly Churches The Dementia Friendly Church programme, a collaboration between Stafford University and the Anglican Diocese of Lichfield, have released a 16-minute film highlighting the experiences of those that have benefitted from the programme. Details here

Faith Tourism Wales A symposium had been planned on Spiritual Tourism in Wales for April 2020 at the University of South Wales. The aim of was to enable participants to learn about the various spiritual / faith tourism / pilgrimage initiatives under way or being planned and to draw up an action plan for making more of the potential for spiritual tourism in Wales. It had to be postponed due to Covid-19. A website is now being set up where ideas can be shared and to encourage joint working. Details here

The Heritage Alliance’s report on Heritage, Health and Wellbeing  Was published on 28thSeptember 2020. It explores the positive impact heritage can have on individual and community wellbeing. While the case for arts and culture supporting wellbeing is well developed, there is comparatively less understanding of the power of heritage to help people to “feel good”.  The report examines the existing work in this space, before showcasing more than 30 case studies. These case studies cover the breadth of the work in our sector, from yoga in a historic house to a group of disabled adults empowered to put on a club night at Alexandra Palace.  Details here 

Church Monuments Essay Prize The Church Monuments Society offers a biennial prize of £500 for the best essay on an aspect of church monuments of any period in Britain or abroad, along with publication of the winning essay in the peer-reviewed international annual Church Monuments, the CMS journal. The competition is open only to those who have not previously published an article in Church Monuments. The length (including notes) shall not exceed 10,000 words and a maximum of 10 illustrations, preferably in colour. The closing date for new entries is 31 December 2020. For a copy of the rules and for the guidelines to contributors click here 

New guidance document on how to care for stained glass Published by Historic England in close association with the glass conservation community, this recognises the impact environmental factors have on the state of windows and leading. Stained Glass Windows: Managing Environmental Deterioration is free to access here. The publication includes a chapter on Environmental Protective Glazing (EPG) based on extensive field and laboratory research prepared for Historic England. 

Resources from ExploreChurches and the National Churches Trust ExploreChurches have created a detailed page on the NCT website. It contains links to all current advice and support, and is updated weekly on reopening and ideas for engaging with your visitors and community 

Essential tourism information (in English and Welsh) can be found here 

They have also developed a set of FREE downloadable resources for you to use. They include posters, seat and hand washing / sanitising notices, prayer station notices etc which you will find here

Welsh churches and chapels under threat It has been predicted that Wales could lose up to 70 per cent of its places of worship in the next 20 years. The report published by the Royal Commission on the Ancient and Historical Buildings in Wales and is available here

Plunkett Foundation You might be interested to read the recent report published by the Plunkett Foundation into community shops and pubs 'A Better form of Business' which you can find here


Heritage Digital from the Heritage Alliance - Explore the free resources

There are 2 webinars and 2 digital guides available free to the heritage sector to download:

Stir to Action: 30 free places on the New Economy Programme for Community Businesses! In partnership with Power to Change, Stir to Action is offering 30 free places on the New Economy Programme that launches this week! A wide range of courses on engagement and participation, social communications, media and journalism, democratic business, placemaking, creativity, and autonomy at work. Details here

Grant Sources and Funding Information for Historic Places of Worship

Near Neighbours Small Grants Seed funding for local groups and organisations who are working to bring together neighbours, developing relationships across diverse faiths and ethnicities to improve their local communities in specified areas of Birmingham, the Black Country, East London, East Midlands, Greater Manchester, Lancashire, Luton, Nottingham, Peterborough, West London, and West Yorkshire. Deadline 11th December 2020 

B&Q Foundation - B&Q Foundation provides grants to registered charities who support people experiencing poor quality housing and homelessness or are looking for help with a project to improve homes and community spaces. Details here

Coronavirus Funding for Historic Places of Worship:

Methodist Insurance's List of Emergency Grant Funders. Details here.

Prince’s Countryside Fund Funding is available for locally-focused, legally-constituted not-for-profit organisations who are working to create resilient rural communities across the UK in the wake of the Covid-19 pandemic. The funding is for projects across the UK which protect or boost community assets and enterprises, or otherwise strengthen the sense of community. Grants of up to £10,000 are available for up to one year. Details here

Government’s £1.57bn Lifeline for Britain’s Arts, Culture and Heritage Sector

Emergency grants and loans will soon be available to help thousands of organisations across a range of sectors, including theatres and performing arts companies, heritage sites, museums, galleries, live music venues and independent cinemas. Decisions on funding will be made working alongside independent figures from the arts and culture sector, including Arts Council England, and other specialist bodies such as Historic England, the National Lottery Heritage Fund and the British Film Institute. Access this here

Allchurches Trust launches new grant programme, Hope Beyond.

Aimed at enabling churches and Christian charities to meet changing need within their communities as the longer-term impact of Covid-19 becomes clearer. In developing this programme, they carried out an online consultation to better understand what their beneficiaries felt the key needs of people of all ages in their communities would be as a direct result of the Coronavirus pandemic. You can find more about the grants programme and the research here

The National Lottery Community Fund National Lottery Awards for All

Offers funding from £300 to £10,000 to support what matters to people and communities. They're looking to fund COVID-19 projects and will prioritise: organisations supporting people who are at high risk from COVID-19. Places of worship are eligible. Details are here  

Advice for grant holders If you have concerns about grants you hold, then the overall advice is to contact the funding body.

Key links are:   

National Churches Trust 

Esmee Fairburn 

Garfield Weston 

ChurchCare grants 

Allchurches Trust 

National Lottery Heritage Fund 

The Heritage Alliance’s Funding Hub The Heritage Alliance has created a separate Funding Hub listing potential sources of funding for heritage organisations during the Coronavirus crisis. Details here

Coronavirus Response – Funding Opportunities for Charities National Council for Voluntary Organisations (NCVO) have compiled a list of funding opportunities and news relating to coronavirus. Find details here

Free searchable database of Coronavirus funders The Charity Excellence website has a new, free database of funders supporting charities during the crisis. Details here

Other Funding information:

Veolia Environmental Trust

Is now accepting applications for January 2021 projects Not-for-profit organisations can apply now for funding for environmental or community-based projects that are located within five miles of an operating Veolia site in England and starting from 11 January 2021. Details here

Changes to roof alarm grant funding

With metal theft continuing to be such a challenging issue, Allchurches Trust, owners of Ecclesiastical Insurance Group, has increased the amount of funding available to churches under its Roof Protection Scheme, with grants now funding up to 50% of the cost of the alarm, up to a maximum of £2500. Scheme now extended until the end of 2020. Details here

Places of Worship Protective Security Fund still open for applications

The Scheme can include more secure gates, locks, alarms and CCTV in order to deter and prevent hate crime attacks. Now in its fifth year, the Home Office is providing a further £3.2 million. The deadline is 9th August 2020 to make an application.  On the 4th July, in response to an MP’s questions, the Minister, Kit Malthouse, reported that ‘In the first three years of the Places of Worship Protective Security Scheme (2016-2019), £800,000 wais available each year. In the fourth year (2019-2020) this was doubled to £1.6 million. All faiths, apart from the Jewish faith (who have access to a separate funding scheme), are eligible to apply for funding under this scheme. Over the last four years, we have allocated £1,643,732 to mosques, £869,858 to churches, £210,989 to temples, and £676,115 to gurdwaras’.

National Churches Trust Foundation Grant Programme

Run in partnership with the Pilgrim Trust, this offers funding for small works to your church building that cost up to £10,000 (excluding VAT) with grants of up to 50% of the cost (up to £5,000). Works would need to have 2 quotes in place and permissions if required. Decisions are made on a monthly basis. Final deadline for 2020 funding through this programme will be 30 October 2020. Details here

Listed Places of Worship Grant Scheme

Information about the Listed Places of Worship Grant Scheme can be found at Please note that this scheme has now been extended until March 2021

Other Grant Sources

Community buildings, places of worship and faith groups - a guide for constituents (National Assembly for Wales). This funding guide outlines and signposts sources of financial assistance available to organisations and groups for the construction, development and maintenance of community buildings and places of worship. This guide also includes sources of financial assistance available for faith groups in Wales.

Historic Environment Scotland - Grants and Funding - Explore the wide range of grants and funding available to projects that share Historic Environment Scotland's aims to protect and promote the historic environment of Scotland. 

The Heritage Funding Directory - Managed by The Heritage Alliance and the Architectural Heritage Fund, the Heritage Funding Directory is a free, easy-to-use guide to financial and other support for anyone undertaking UK related heritage projects. 

The National Churches Trust - The National Churches Trust now offer three types of grant - Cornerstone, Gateway and Foundation Grants for Maintenance. Full details can be found by going to the individual grant programme pages accessed via the above link, which also includes important information about deadline dates. The Trust also provides Preventative Maintenance Micro-Grants for churches towards the cost of building maintenance services.

Allchurches Trust - The Trust support the repair, restoration and re-ordering of churches and cathedrals of many denominations, especially where these changes support wider community use and help those in need. They give grants to churches and charities running projects aimed at tackling homelessness, poverty and loneliness, and many other social issues.

Faith in Maintenance - In 2005 the Methodist Property Office and the Society for the Protection of Ancient Buildings (SPAB) developed a training course for volunteers responsible for historic chapels. The scheme, entitled Faith in Maintenance, is a unique project that offers training and support to the thousands of volunteers from all faith groups who help to care for historic buildings. It aims to give these volunteers training in recognising potential problems, understanding the use of traditional materials and construction and tackling common maintenance problems, while at the same time encouraging more people to become actively involved in their local community's heritage and to appreciate the importance of historic places of worship. The courses, which are free to attend, offer a full day of training including practical sessions and professional speakers and access to a dedicated telephone advice service. 

You can find out more on the Society's website:


Listed Buildings 

How do I make changes to a listed building? How do I apply for listed building approval?

What is the Ecclesiastical Exemption?

What is the Listed Buildings Advisory Committee?

Frequently Asked Questions

Maintenance and Repairs - Listed Places of Worship

Listed Building Guidance Notes


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