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Peterborough Diocesan Advisory Committee

All consecrated buildings and burial grounds are subject to the jurisdiction of the Diocesan Bishop. The Bishop does not exercise this jurisdiction personally, but through the Chancellor of the Diocese, who is one of the two legal officers of the diocese, the other being the Diocesan Registrar. Apart from certain matters contained in List A in Schedule 1 of the Faculty Jurisdiction Rules 2015 (as amended), no alterations may be made to a consecrated building or burial ground without the authority of the relevant Archdeacon for matters within List B. Matters not falling within List  A or List B or which are Excluded Matters will require a permission called a Faculty before work can commence.

Each Diocese has a Diocesan Advisory Committee ("DAC"). The functions of a DAC are set out in Schedule 2 of the Ecclesiastical Jurisdiction Measure and Care of Churches Measure 2018. The principal function of the DAC is to advise the Chancellor on applications for Faculties.

The DAC includes Members with expertise in particular areas relating to church buildings, such as architecture, stained glass, organs, archaeology, etc. The DAC's main role is in advising the Chancellor of the Diocese in connection with applications for Faculties to authorise the carrying out of works to churches and churchyards, but the DAC is willing to give preliminary advice to Parochial Church Councils prior to their making applications for Faculties.

The Faculty Jurisdiction Rules 2015 (as amended) provide for consultation and advice prior to the start of faculty proceedings. The principle aim is to "frontload" the consultation process, with a view to all consultation taking place prior to the issue of a Notification of Advice by the DAC, i.e., prior to the commencement of faculty proceedings. Under Part 4 of the Rules, the DAC are required to assist and support parishes through the consultation process by ensuring all necessary consultations are completed and, so far as possible, any issues resolved before the DAC issues its Notification of Advice. When a parish consults the DAC on its proposals, the DAC must consider whether it should give the parish initial advice to assist it in relation to its proposals. Whether initial advice is needed will depend on the nature of the particular scheme in hand. In some cases where proposals are of an entirely straightforward nature, or do not involve a listed building, the DAC might take the view that initial advice is not needed and, if the parish has provided what is needed for the DAC to make a recommendation, simply proceed to issue a Notification of Advice. In other cases, for example where proposals are complex or involve making changes to a listed building, the DAC is likely to take the view that it should give initial advice to the parish. The range of matters on which the DAC may give initial advice is not limited but where changes that will have an impact on the significance of a listed building are proposed, the DAC must advise the parish of the need to provide Statements of Significance and Needs. It must also advise the parish of any applicable requirements as to consultation with Historic England, amenity societies, the local planning authority and the Church Buildings Council. The DAC will not issue its Notification of Advice under Part 4 of the Rules until any applicable consultation requirements have been complied with and the DAC has all the information needed for it to give its final advice.

It is not necessary for the DAC's advice to be sought in relation to the matters of exhumations or reservation of grave spaces.

Pending Faculty Petitions

Rule 9.9 of The Faculty Jurisdiction Rules 2015 (as amended) provides that notice of all Faculty Petitions which relate to work that involves:

  1. demolition of a listed building;
  2. alteration to or the extension of:
    1. any part of a Grade I or Grade II* listed building; or
    2. the exterior of a Grade II listed building to such extent as would be likely to affect its character as a building of special architectural or historic interest; or
    3. demolition affecting the exterior of an unlisted building in a conservation area.

should be published on the Diocesan website.

The Registrar or Chancellor will give directions for the publication on the Diocesan website of a notice which contains the following:-

  1. details of the church or building to which the petition relates
  2. a statement that an application is being made to the consistory court for permission to carry out works to the church or building
  3. a description of the works
  4. details of where a copy of the petition, plans and other documents may be inspected, and
  5. a date (which must not be less than 21 days from the date of publication of the notice) by which any objection must reach the Registrar.

Please use the link below for a list of all current Faculty Petitions (other than petitions for exhumation, and reservation of graves spaces). Only those marked Grade I or Grade II* are subject to Rule 9.9.

List of current pending Faculty Petitions

DAC Meetings and Agenda Deadlines

Date of Meeting Agenda Deadline
5 March 2024 20 February 2024
23 April 2024 9 April 2024
4 June 2024 21 May 2024
16 July 2024 2 July 2024
3 September 2024 20 August 2024
15 October 2024 1 October 2024
3 December 2024 19 November 2024

DAC Notes for Guidance

Index of Notes for Guidance

Legal and Practical Requirements

Access for People with Disabilities (2008)
Architects & Surveyors: Advice to PCCs on appointing (2011)
Architects & Surveyors: DAC Approved List
Architects & Surveyors: DAC expectations (2011)
Architects & Surveyors: Conservation Accreditation (2006)
Asbestos (Link to Health & Safety Executive web site)
Bats and Churches (2013)
Churches and VAT (2013)
Fire Safety (2008)
Fire Safety - Opinion by the Legal Advisory Commission
Funding (2006)
Health and Safety (2006)
Health and Safety Audit Questionnaire (2007)
Height: Working at Height Regulations 2005 (2006)
Parish Records: Safer Storage, Practicalities and the Law (2013)
Smoke-free (Signs) Regulations 2007
Works Checklist (2006)

Information about getting permission to undertake work in churches and churchyards

Archaeology (2006)
English Heritage and Faculty Jurisdiction: Northants and Rutland (2006)
English Heritage and Faculty Jurisdiction: Peterborough and The Soke - application for advice form to be used by parishes in the Eastern Region of EH on advice from the DAC (2006)
How to Obtain a Faculty (2006)
Reordering your Church - Flow Chart (2014)
Site visits: when, why, who? (2006)
Specifications - DAC expectations (2011)
Specifications - Why does the DAC advise PCCs to get them? (2011)
Statements of Significance (2012)
Statements of Need: Making the most of your church building (2012)
What is the DAC? (2006)

Works affecting the exterior of the church building

Extensions and new build (2006)
Lime and historic fabric (2006)
Lead thefts - DAC Guidance (2007)
Lead thefts - English Heritage Guidance (2011)
Spire repairs (2006)
Standing fabric intrusion (making holes through historic fabric) (2006)
Historic England Guidance on Roofing using Terne-coated Stainless Steel (2019)

Internal works

Bells and Bell Frames (2006)
Bells and Bell frames: criteria for historic significance (2006)
CCTV (2006)
Chairs in church buildings (2006)
Clocks (2006)
Electrical work in churches (2015)
Electrical and lightning inspections (quinqunennial) (2015)
Electrical works - contractor's NICEIC/NAPIT/ECA declaration (2015)
Floors, levelling, altering and covering (2006)
Heating in churches (2006)
Heating methods (2006)
Internal lighting (2006)
Memorials and plaques in churches (2006)
Organs (2006)
Pew removal (2006)
Projector and screen installation (2006)
Redecoration (2006)
Reordering your Church - Flow Chart (2014)
Reordering Churches, and especially regarding nave altars (2018)
Re-ordering (internal) (2006)
Sale of Church Treasures - Church Buildings Council Policy (2012)
Sound and audio loop systems (2006)
Stained glass windows (commissioning) (2006)
Telecommunications installations (2006)
Timber - assessment and treatment (2006)
WC and Utilities (2006)
Woodwork (2006)

Churches and churchyards

Areas for cremated remains (2006)
Cesspits and Septic Tanks (2006)
Churchyard walls (2006)
Drainage and French Drains (2006)
Energy Efficiency in Churches 1 - Systems (2011)
Energy Efficiency in Churches 2 - Applications (2011)
External Lighting (2006)
Handrails - internal and external (2006)
Headstones, memorials and tombs in churchyards (2006)
Memorial Safety Guidance (Ministry of Justice) (2009)
Notice boards (2006)
Paths (2006)
Pipes and cables (2006)
Safety Testing of Memorials - Chancellor's Practice Direction 2012/01
Safety Testing of Memorials - Ministry of Justice Guidance (2009)
Safety Testing of Memorials - Ministry of Justice Q & A (2009)
Seats in churchyards (2006)
War memorials in churches and churchyards (2006)
Window Protection (2006)
Window Repairs (2007)

In addition to these guidelines, which are produced with the specific needs and experience of the Peterborough Diocese in mind, the DAC also keeps a wide range of nationally published information and booklets. This includes most of the Council for the Care of Churches publications and a wide range of magazine and journal articles for reference. Anyone is welcome to come and look at these (in the Diocesan Office, Peterborough); please contact the DAC Secretary to arrange a convenient time to visit.

Useful Web Sites

Church Care - For all aspects of looking after churches and churchyards, including sources of funding
Funds for Historic Buildings - For sources of funding
Listed Places of Worship Grants Scheme and Memorials Grant Scheme - For details of reclaiming VAT on repairs (latest information is that this scheme will continue until March 2011)
Council for British Archaeology - Church Archaeology
Council for British Archaeology - Human remains
The Church of England - Treatment of Human Remains
Historic England - Guidance for best practice for treatment of human remains excavated from Christian burial grounds in England
Historic England - Home Page
Natural England
Society for the Protection of Ancient Buildings
The Victorian Society
The Georgian Group

For further information

Please contact:

The DAC Secretary
The DAC Office
The Palace
Minster Precincts
Peterborough PE1 1YB

Tel: 01733-887007
Email: dac@peterborough-diocese.org.uk