The Methodist Council has set aside £1m from the Connexional Priority Fund to support managing trustees with property matters. To date the fund has been utilised to offer consultant surveyors to advise managing trustees across the Connexion on the opportunities for their buildings and site, and to begin the development of a better resourced property function for managing trustees.
It is often the initial stages of exploring possibilities for church buildings that require significant funds to be spent without any guarantee of a return or even satisfactory outcome. The Property Development Committee (PDC) has therefore agreed to make money from this Fund available for managing trustees at the exploratory stages. The aim is to offer as many managing trustees assistance as possible and therefore the PDC has decided that up to £10,000 can be made available to a body of managing trustees upon the basis that this covers up to 60% of the exploratory costs with the remaining 40% being funded by the local Church, Circuit or District.
In making this application, managing trustees are asked to provide the following information:
- Description, with plan, of the current church site/potential church site, its current use and the limitations of the current church site that the managing trustees are seeking to address;
- Copy of local Church mission development plan and Circuit mission development plan;
- Key ministry and missional needs that the local Church has identified (if not set out in the mission development plan) and how this fits within the Circuit mission development plan;
- Copy of District Development/Mission plans (or draft if not finalised);
- Statement of support from District and Circuit (if local Church application);
- If disposal is being considered the managing trustees response to the questions in footnote of the Connexional Property Strategy
- What the vision of the local Church and/or Circuit is in respect of current church buildings or land/buildings that might be purchased and how will this vision be seeking to further Our Calling;
- Possible partnerships as set out in the Connexional Property Strategy that are being explored or if not, why partnership is not being explored;
- Explanation of how speculative funding will be utilised by the managing trustees (cost estimates should have be obtained prior to making applications);
- Where the other 40% of the funding is bring provided from;
- Written confirmation from the District Property Secretary and District Chair to the application being made.
You may find it helpful to look at www.methodist.org.uk/property/project as an additional resource.
The documents for the application should be sent to Helen Byrne at firstname.lastname@example.org. The PDC will then review the application before making a decision.