On 15th January 2015, the Bishop of Derby, the Rt Revd Alastair Redfern, took part in a short debate in the House of Lords, led by Lord Avebury, on what steps the Government are taking to abolish the liability of private householders and others for chancel repairs. The Bishop put on record that the Church is, in principle, in favour of changing the law. However, he cautioned that the loss of title may cause the local parish financial hardships, and that compensation for the financial loss that would occur must be taken into account. The full transcript of the debate is reproduced below.
Asked by Lord Avebury: To ask Her Majesty’s Government what steps they are taking to abolish the liability of private householders and others for chancel repairs.
Lord Avebury (LD): My Lords, a consensus that reform of the law on chancel repairs is long overdue has emerged from discussions with the church, the Law Commission, the Law Society, the Country Landowners’ Association and the National Secular Society. Since the Chancel Repairs Bill will not make further progress until after the general election, a preliminary debate on the issues is useful now. Continue reading “Bishop of Derby takes part in debate on chancel repair liability”
On Wednesday 17 December 2014, the Second Church Estates Commissioners, the Rt Hon. Sir Tony Baldry MP, answered written questions from Robin Walker MP about grants available for church repairs, and from Chi Onwurah MP about the savings being made from the new Parliamentary Q&A system.
Continue reading “Second Church Estates Commissioner answers questions on Grants available for Churches and about the savings made from the new Parliamentary Q&A System”
During the regular slot for questions to the Church Commissioners in the House of Commons on 11th December 2014, the Second Church Estates Commissioner, Rt Hon Sir Tony Baldry MP, was asked about maintenance of cathedrals, church repairs, bat damage in churches and general election hustings. A full transcript is below.
The right hon. Member for Banbury, representing the Church Commissioners, was asked—
English Cathedrals (Maintenance)
Michael Fabricant (Lichfield) (Con): [Question:] What representations he has made to the Chancellor of the Exchequer on funding for maintenance of the fabric of English cathedrals that are older than 500 years. Continue reading “Church Commissioner Questions – Bats, Buildings, Elections”
On 17th July 2014, the Second Church Estates Commissioner, the Rt Hon Sir Tony Baldry MP, answered a number of questions on the floor of the House of Commons, during the monthly Church Commissioner Questions slot. He answered questions on food banks, church and cathedral repairs, human trafficking and women bishops. He also answered a written question on Church Commissioners ICT. A full transcript of the session is reproduced below:
Hugh Bayley (York Central) (Lab): What support the Church of England is giving to food banks.
The Second Church Estates Commissioner (Sir Tony Baldry): Four in five of the Church of England’s 13,000 parish churches are supporting local food banks. Continue reading “Church Commissioners – Oral and Written Questions”
On Wednesday 20th March 2013, the Second Church Estates Commissioner Sir Tony Baldry MP posed a written question to the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs George Eustice asking about the plans to mitigate the impact of bats upon churches
Continue reading “Second Church Estates Commissioner Questions Minister on Bats in Churches”
In Church Commissioners Question TIme on Thursday 10th October 2013, Sir Tony Baldry MP was asked questions on cathedral congregations, Syria and Egypt, food banks, bats in churches, church credit union and scrap metal.
Mr David Nuttall (Bury North) (Con): What lessons the Church of England has learned from the increasing size of congregations attending services at cathedrals.
The Second Church Estates Commissioner (Sir Tony Baldry): I am glad to report that over the past 10 years there has been a 35% increase in average weekly attendance in cathedral services. A team from Cranmer Hall at St John’s college, Durham is conducting a detailed survey of the trends in increased cathedral attendance. Continue reading “MPs Questions to Church Commissioners”
On 18th July 2013, Lord James of Blackheath asked Her Majesty’s Government whether they will discuss with the Church of England how to commemorate the 304 British soldiers who were executed by the British Government in World War I and who are currently not commemorated in any existing war memorials. The Bishop of Norwich, the Rt Revd Graham James, asked a supplementary question:
The Lord Bishop of Norwich: My Lords, while I am sure the Minister is aware that the Church of England does not have sole responsibility to add names to war memorials but would be glad to work with others on this important issue, is he aware of the work being undertaken by the Church of England, the Imperial War Museum and the War Memorials Trust together to develop educational materials linked to the centenary of World War I to help school children and the wider public to learn more about all the people commemorated and to cherish these memorials and all that they represent?
Lord Gardiner of Kimble: I entirely agree with the right reverend Prelate and I am aware of the very important work being done by the Imperial War Museum, the Commonwealth War Graves Commission and the Heritage Lottery Fund. The important thing is that English Heritage is restoring, as we all see, the national memorial in Whitehall. I commend it for doing that and I hope very much that others will take that lead so that war memorials across the land, in whosever ownership or custodianship, are in very good order for the commemorations.