Where to go for more advice

If you have any queries, our Technical Officer James Innerdale will be pleased to help. You can email him on james.innerdale@spab.org.uk.

James Innerdale carrying out a Maintenance Surgery at the MCP 2014 Conference.

You can also phone the SPAB Helpline. The line is open from Monday to Friday between 9.30 am and 12.30 pm on 020 7456 0916. Our advisors will help to answer your queries and can put you in touch with good quality local trades who will understand your building.

There are of course many other resources out there that can help you to look after your place of worship, to make things easier we have listed some of them here.

Technical, funding and project development advice

The National Churches Trust

The National Churches Trust have an outstanding resource on their website, listing useful sources of help (we are pleased to report that SPAB is one of them!). We didn’t see any way in which we could do better, and why re-invent the wheel? If you still have queries here is the best place to start

Historic England (previously English Heritage)

Part of the regulatory process Historic England also offers advice and support. They offer useful advice on balancing the needs of congregations with the desirability of conserving heritage as well as guidance on obtaining permission and consents for works to places of worship. In 2012, Historic England (EH) published a revised edition of their guidance on New Work in Historic Places of Worship. All can be downloaded from the website.

The Arthur Rank Centre 

An ecumenical Christian charity with the aim of resourcing rural churches of all denominations. There is a comprehensive online resource to support individual congregations in maintaining their building, adapting it for today’s needs, balancing conservation and mission and helping to make rural churches more accessible.

The Churches Trust for Cumbria

Offers case studies illustrating rural places of worship engaging with their communities in innovative ways. There is also guidance and other support to help churches of all denominations develop their own projects.

For further advice on specific building elements please go to Page 2

Funding and project development advice only

Heritage Lottery Fund

Provides a range of good-practice guidance to help you plan and deliver your heritage project, and can provide specific advice on funding and planning for places of worship. This includes reducing environmental impacts, guidance on carrying out evaluation, making your project fully accessible, using digital technology in heritage projects, how to encourage community participation and working with volunteers.

The Faith Based Regeneration Network UK (FbRN)

The leading national multi faith network for community development, regeneration and social action. There is guidance on every aspect of setting up and managing a community project and case studies. FbRN also produced an extremely useful toolkit for Regeneration – Practical Advice for Faith Communities.

The Historic Religious Buildings Alliance

Keep up to date with the latest news of relevance to looking after an historic place of worship and sign up to the Historic Religious Buildings Alliance free monthly e-newsletter. It provides information on changes to government policy, consultations, training and funding opportunities, conferences and good news stories. Sign up here.

Briefing on finding funds and grants for places of worship

We have produced our own briefing (updated January 2017) on sources of grants and funding for places of worship.

Advice provided by different denominations

Church of England

Visit the Church Care website for an abundance of knowledge and advice.

Roman Catholic

In the Roman Catholic Church for England and Wales, the care and management of church buildings comes under the Patrimony Committee.

Methodist Church

The Methodist Church has guidance on managing and developing their churches.

Baptist Church

The Baptist Union Corporation has written a series of guidance leaflets to help local churches with practical building issues, legal matters, property opportunities and problems, and charity law.

United Reformed Church

The United Reformed Church’s Plato Property Handbook which covers all issues to do with buildings.

The Quakers

The Quakers have information on managing meeting houses and developing new building projects.