See below for useful links to external websites offering information on the care of your church building and churchyard:
Easy Access to Historic Buildings: Guidance from Historic England
These guidelines are intended for those who own, manage or occupy historic buildings, and focus on physical access issues. They are also intended for those who will be professionally involved in planning alterations to historic buildings.
Archaeology – Why it matters
The Archaeology Forum (TAF), formerly the Historic Environment Forum, has brought out a new advocacy document ‘Archaeology Enriches us All’ to explain why archaeology matters.
Bat Conservation Trust
Link to a publication by the Bat Conservation Trust entitled “Bats in Churches and how you can help them”.
The British Institute of Organ Studies
To advance the education of the public in and promote the study of and research into the development of the organ and its music in all its aspects and, in particular, the development of the organ and its music in Britain and to publish the useful results of any such research; and to promote the preservation and restoration of historic organs in Britain for the benefit of the public generally.
The Central Council of Church Bell Ringers
The Towers and Belfries Committee of the Central Council of Church Bell Ringers make available advice and assistance on and information about the installation, maintenance and security of rings of bells, the maintenance of towers, and related matters. Contact details of how to obtain such advice can be found on the website.
Information about fundraising, guidance for new churchwardens and all sorts details on different aspects of maintaining church fabric and developing your church building from the Cathedral and Church Buildings Division of the Church of England.
Church Monument Handbook
Useful advice on caring for stone monuments by conservation company Minerva.
Helpful information regarding Health and Safety in church buildings
Church Plans On-Line
This is useful for research on your building. Some 12,300 plans are included which, in some instances, are the only surviving evidence for the layout of the church before restoration.
Churches Visitor & Tourism Association
The Churches Tourism Association is the UK’s leading body for promoting best practice in welcoming visitors to places of worship and developing the tourism potential and visitor experience of a unique part of our historical and contemporary sacred heritage, captured for the future, living in the present, and distinctive to the location of every community across the land.
The Conservation Foundation
The Conservation Foundation was founded to provide a means for people in public, private and non-profit sectors to collaborate on environmental causes. In terms of churches, see the ‘Parish Pumps Programme’ section of the website; the Programme is organised in association with the Public Affairs Division of the Church of England. It brings news and information on sustainable living, provides funding for community projects and organises events on topical sustainable consumption and production issues.
The Conservation Register makes information available on conservation-restoration businesses providing commercial services in a variety of specialisms, many of which will be useful to churches seeking specialist help.
Disability advice – Through the Roof
Through the Roof is a Christian disability ministry working in partnership with churches and other organisations to promote access and inclusion of disabled people in every area of church life.
Faith in Maintenance
An initiative run by the Society for the Protection of Ancient Buildings (SPAB) which aims to help volunteers who look after historic places of worship. They provide training to help you understand how your building works and how to solve problems caused by leaky gutters and blocked drains. Free training courses are available to any faith group using an historic building for worship. The website contains lots of helpful tips and guidance.
The Georgian Group
One of the National Amenity Societies who advise on buildings of the period 1700 to 1837. They may need to be consulted on significant changes to listed churches or fittings of this period.
A website to search national and local records of England’s historic sites and buildings, including listing details.
Formerly known as English Heritage, Historic England are the government’s advisers on the historic environment. This link will take you to their Places of Worship pages, where you can find advice on maintenance, making changes to your building, and buildings ‘at risk’.
Listed Places of Worship Grants Scheme
Information on how to reclaim VAT on church repairs.
Parish Resources for Stewardship
Church of England’s Stewardship website, with much useful information for parishes on this issue including information on giving, Gift Aid, a Stewardship Toolkit for Rural Churches, and much more.
Society for the Protection of Ancient Buildings (SPAB)
The SPAB represents the practical and positive side of conservation.
They are also one of the National Amenity Societies who may need to be consulted on significant changes to listed church buildings. They have a free telephone advice line for technical advice.
SPAB Techncial Advice Line (9.30am-12.30pm) Monday, Tuesday, Thursday 0207 456 0916
The Twentieth Century Society
One of the National Amenity Societies who advise on buildings of the period from 1914 to the present day. They may need to be consulted on significant changes to listed churches or fixtures and fittings from this period.
The Victorian Society
One of the National Amenity Societies who advise on buildings of the period 1837 to 1914. They may need to be consulted on significant changes to listed churches or fittings of this period.