Grants and Funding

Our buildings can be costly to maintain and adapt, but there are a variety of sources of funding available for both repairs and alterations.

The downloads below include advice on possible sources of grant funding, and the VAT situation for church buildings.

Grant Funding

Funding for Church Building Projects
Last updated July 2018

There is also lots of useful information and a national funding/grants list on the Parish Resources website.

If your PCC is considering making a grant application to the Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF) please contact the Church Buildings Office to discuss your proposals. We can also put you in touch with other parishes in the Diocese who have made a successful grant application to the HLF, so that you can learn from their experiences, and gain some useful tips!

Friends of Churches

Many churches now have a ‘Friends’ Group – an organisation that exists to support the church building itself, and can help with fundraising for repairs and improvements to the building. Such a group can either be a sub-committee of the PCC, or an independent charity. Information on setting a group up, and the issues to consider when doing this can be found on the following websites:

Parish Resources

National Churches Trust

Diocese of London

The Cooper Legacy

The Diocese has received a generous legacy from the estate of Margaret Ruth Langley Cooper of East Budleigh to be used for the purposes of the Church Building Repair Fund. The Board of Finance have agreed that this legacy should be used to make grants available to parishes under the terms of the Diocesan Building Fund, which are detailed below.

Applications to the fund will be reviewed by the Assets Group twice a year, in April and October, for five years (in line with the quinquennial inspection of churches) from 2012 and it is anticipated that a sum of £25,000 will be available at each review. A Cooper Legacy Application Form can be found by clicking here. Full details of eligible works and details of the fund can be found here: Cooper Legacy Criteria 2019.

Applications should be submitted to your Rural Dean (and then the Archdeacon) by the end of March and September for the April and October meetings respectively.

The Diocesan Building Fund

The purpose of the Building Fund is to support Mission Communities and parishes in support of the Moving on in Growth agenda by providing funds to enable:

1.   The review and rationalisation of a Mission Community’s building stock*

2.   The re-ordering of church buildings (both consecrated and non-consecrated) to better provide for church and/or community use

3.   The repair and improvement of church buildings including heating systems

Full details of eligible works and criteria can be found here: Assets Group Diocesan Building Fund 2019

and the application form for a loan under this Fund can be found here.

*If you are interested in carrying out a feasibility study with regard to priority 1 above (the review and rationalisation of your Mission Community’s building stock), please contact either Nigel Pratt (01392 294944) or Charlotte Vickers (01392 294945) for further details and an application form.


Guidance on VAT grants

Since the Listed Places of Worship Grant Scheme was changed in October 2012, claims made for eligible works to church buildings are guaranteed to be paid at 100% of the VAT spent. For more information see or phone 0845 013 6601.

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