Faculty & List B Applications

The majority of church buildings, their contents and grounds are protected by Faculty Jurisdiction. Under this legislation, any repair, alteration, extension, disposal or addition needs to receive approval. This is granted by the Chancellor of the Diocese Sir Andrew McFarlane or his Deputy Gregory Jones QC, or in some cases by the appropriate Archdeacon (via List B authorisation).

The downloads below offer advice and practical information on the process of obtaining a faculty. If you have any queries about your particular application, you are welcome to contact the office directly.

The Diocese of Exeter have signed up to the Church of England’s Online Faculty System, and all Faculty and List B applications should be submitted via the online portal https://facultyonline.churchofengland.org after reading the three guidance notes below. Please also see this link for Frequently Asked Questions about the online system.

1. How to obtain a faculty

2. What information do I need to submit?

3. Who else might I need to consult?

4. Photographic Recording

For information on deadline dates for applications, and fees payable, please see this page.

From the 12th October 2015 Historic England introduced charging for pre-application advice. Parishes will receive 15 hours free of pre-application advice and after this will be charged. Please see these FAQs for further information.


Works that do not require a Faculty
As of the 1st January 2016, the 2006 Minor Works list has been replaced by the new national Lists A & B, which can be viewed here. List A works can be carried out without any consultation, and List B works will need to be authorised by the Archdeacon, in consultation with the DAC. All List B works should be applied for via the Online Faculty System (see above).

For works to bells, trees and organs authorised under List B, recourse needs to be made to the guidance from the Church Buildings Council, which can be accessed here. This page also contains Frequently Asked Questions about the new lists.


Church Buildings Legislation

The following legislation currently applies to church buildings:

Care of Churches and Ecclesiastical Jurisdiction Measure 1991

Faculty Jurisdiction Rules 2015

Inspection of Churches Measure 1955

Operation of the Ecclesiastical Exemption 2010

The Church of England benefits from the Ecclesiastical Exemption and the majority of our church buildings are not subject to Listed Building Consent from the Local Planning Authority. However, it is important to remember that although Listed Building Consent may not be required, Planning Permission may be needed if changes are to be made to the exterior of the building or churchyard. There is no exemption from this, or from the need for Building Regulations for certain types of works.

There are a very small number of listed churches which are not subject to Faculty Jurisdiction, and therefore need to apply for Listed Building Consent via their Local Planning Authority for works to their buildings. Please contact the office if you think your church falls in to this category.

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