Conservation and maintenance grants and fundraising
NEW! MINOR REPAIRS & IMPROVEMENT GRANT (MRIG) (Feb 2024)
As recently announced, the Church Buildings Team have been successful in applying for the Minor Repairs and Improvements Grant, the fund being offered by the Archbishops’ Council under the Buildings for Mission project, made possible with Church Commissioners’ funding. We will receive £207k to give small grants to parishes that have urgent minor works, which must be identified in the most recent and up to date Quinquennial Inspection report for such things as repair or replacement of rainwater goods and drainage, lead repairs, slipped slates etc.
There is an eligibility and assessment guide (at the bottom of this page) which will stipulate which works are eligible, but the main criteria are that the total works are under £10k (or £12k for unlisted buildings as they can’t reclaim the VAT) and they can’t be part of a larger project (i.e. this grant can’t be used for match funding). The grant can also be used for improvements such as permanent disability access, upgrading toilets, upgrading kitchens etc.
The grants will be administered by the Church Buildings Adviser, Keith Halliday, and will be assessed by a grants committee. The level of grant given will be determined by the national deprivation index with those in the most deprived areas receiving up to 90% and those in the least down to 10%.
There will be four grant application deadlines; 20th April 2024, 20th September 2024, 20th January 2025, 20th May 2025. All works must be completed by December 2025. Although £207k sounds like a lot of money, if all of the churches in the diocese applied it would work out at £354 per church. Therefore, not all applications will be successful, the most urgent and those which stave off further degradation will be given priority.
The application form (at the bottom of this page) and your supporting documents must be submitted electronically. Please make sure you have read through the eligibility and assessment criteria in detail before sending your application with the requested documents to email@example.com Thank you
NATIONAL LOTTERY HERITAGE FUND (NHLF)
The NHLF funds activities that connect people with heritage, or activities that connect people with heritage and include some capital works to historic fabric. You can find out more about NHLF grants and how to apply here: www.heritagefund.org.uk/hub/places-worship
The Heritage Fund has published its timetable for the transition to accepting grants under its new strategic framework, Heritage 2033. Applications to the current programme have temporarily closed for grants from £10k - £250k. The application process will reopen in early 2024. The detail is set out here.
In March 2023 the NLHF released their 10 year strategy; Heritage 2033. Their investment principles and what they'll achieve by 2033 include:
- Improved condition and understanding of heritage
- Reduced amount of ‘heritage at risk’
- Delivered transformational long-term projects
- Made digital heritage more accessible
The main change is that "heritage at risk" has been highlighted and identified. The current outcomes and activity requirements remain the same until summer 2023, when they will run parallel to the new strategy and hopefully acknowledge that some rural communities cannot encourage the sort of footfall or activity that urban churches can achieve more easily. Further information can be found here Heritage 2033 – our 10-year strategy | The National Lottery Heritage Fund
BENEFACT TRUST The Benefact Trust (previously All Churches Trust) has six grants under its "new grants framework". The most relevant of these are:-
- Building Improvement Grants; For the essential repair and improvement of churches and Christian buildings.
- Community Impact Grants; A programme of funding aimed at supporting projects that directly address the social challenges faced by some of the most vulnerable communities in our society.
- Heritage Skills for Christian Buildings Grants; Focused on the preservation of essential heritage skills and careers through apprenticeships, scholarships, and training courses.
The roof alarm grant is also continuing.
The Building Improvement Grants is the newest strand to their funding and includes the following:-
- Essential, one-off repairs or other capital works to ensure the continued use or viability of a building (capital work must be considered urgent or necessary within 12 months)
- Minor capital works or equipment purchases to meet operational or accessibility requirements (e.g. essential operational equipment, AV equipment, hearing loops, ramps, etc)
- Conservation or restoration of historic features (e.g. stained glass, carvings, interior furnishings, clocks, tower bells, organs etc) which contribute to preservation and appreciation of a building’s heritage
- Other aesthetic enhancements (e.g. interior decoration, furnishings or public realm improvements) to improve indoor or outdoor spaces for users
- Energy efficiency/renewable energy measures (e.g. heating/lighting upgrades, solar panels, etc) which improve the sustainability of church buildings/facilities and enable their continued use
Further details can be found here Which grant is for me | Benefact Trust
ChurchCare - Urgent fabric repairs and conservation grants ChurchCare give grants for urgent fabric repairs and the conservation of historic church interiors and churchyard structures in partnership with The Wolfson Trust, Pilgrim Trust, the Radcliffe Trust, the Oswald Allen Bequest, and the Worshipful Company of Goldsmiths. Application deadlines for conservation grants are as follows:
- Bells and Bellframes: apply by 25th March 2024
- Books and Manuscripts: apply by 10th June 2024
- Church Plate: apply by 10th June 2024
- Churchyard Structures: apply by 10th June 2024
- Clocks: apply by 8th April 2024
- Monumental brasses and decorative metalwork: apply by 10th June 2024
- Monuments: apply by 10th June 2024
- Organs: apply by 3rd June 2024
- Paintings & Wall Paintings: apply by 29th January 2024
- Stained glass: apply by 12th August 2024
- Textiles: apply by 10th June 2024
- Wooden objects: apply by 10th June 2024
Full details of all these grants and how to apply can be found by clicking on this link: ChurchCare Grants.
ChurchCare - Grants for conservation reports Conservation reports are an essential first step in projects involving the repair and conservation of artworks and historic furnishings in churches and are also a key document to support faculty and grant applications. ChurchCare can award grants of up to £5,000 to assist with the commissioning of such reports (as well as grants towards the conservation works themselves) including environmental surveys and other technical investigations (e.g paint analysis). These grants are available throughout the year. For further information please click on this link: Conservation Grants.
Listed Places of Worship (LPOW) Grant Scheme - to recover VAT The Listed Places of Worship Grant Scheme gives grants that cover the VAT incurred in making repairs of over £1,000 to listed buildings in use as places of worship. The scheme (continuing until 31st March 2025) covers repairs to the fabric of the building, along with associated professional fees, plus repairs to turret clocks, pews, bells and pipe organs. For guidance as to how to apply online through the new application portal please see the webpage at: LPW Scheme.
National Churches Trust - Maintenance and Repair Grants
The NCT has tried to streamline its grant programme and to make the application process easier. They will continue to offer three types of grant. These will be:
Small grants - these were formerly called Foundation grants for maintenance. Small grants support small but urgent maintenance and repair issues or help fund small investigative works. These will continue to provide funding of up to £5,000 but the maximum project costs will increase from £10,000 to £20,000 making it possible for more projects to be eligible for funding and quicker decisions. The next deadline for small grant applications is 29th February 2024.
Medium grants - these were formerly called Gateway grants. These grants fund small repair work or the development of projects such as preparing for a major project, or preparing to approach a major grant funder. These will continue to provide grants of up to £10,000, but the project costs will change to between £20,000 and £80,000. Projects of under £20,000 are eligible for our Small grants and those above £80,000 for our Large grants. The next deadlines for Medium grant applications are 16th April and 13th August 2024.
Large grants – these were formerly called Cornerstone grants. These grants fund toilet and kitchen projects costing more than £30,000 and repair projects costing more than £80,000. The first stage 1 grant application deadline for 2024 is 5th March.
Further information can be found here Which grant is right for my project? | National Churches Trust
Yorkshire Historic Churches Trust The Trust provides funds for churches and chapels within Yorkshire. Funding ranges from small schemes such as investigatory works, repairs to monuments, to larger schemes including large scale stonework repointing, complete roofing repairs and other more complex conservation works. Applications are welcomed, the process is straightforward and found in the grants section of the YHCT website. The current round of applications closes on 8th March 2024 followed by a further round closing on 23rd August 2024. Please contact Jonathan Stamp, the Grants Secretary, on firstname.lastname@example.org if you need any help with your grant application.
The YHCT also invites individual PCCs to become 'Church Members' and to support the Trust by opening their churches on Yorkshire Churches Day on 14 September 2024 or taking part in the Ride and Stride sponsored event.
For further details click here: Yorkshire Historic Churches Trust.
FUNDRAISING TOOLBOX FOR RURAL CHURCHES Ecclesiastical Insurance have compiled a fundraising resource focussing on rural churches with small congregations and few volunteers (Jan 2022): https://www.ecclesiastical.com/church/fundraising/rural-parishes/
List of grant funders for churches Ecclesiastical have also updated their list of funders, all of which are open to churches and which detail the funder's interests, contact information and how to apply. You can search their list HERE
Parish Resources - funding and fundraising This webpage has a lot of helpful guidance and links, including sources of funding,12 guides on Capital Fundraising and 6 guides on Church Fundraising: https://www.parishresources.org.uk/resources-for-treasurers/funding/
- The up to date National List of Charitable Grants for Churches (which includes lists of available grants for conservation, preservation and restoration works, bells, organs, windows, community projects and the provision of improved facilities) referred to on the Parish Resources webpage can also be found at the bottom of this page.
Churches Conservation Foundation - small grants programme for church repair Grants of £250 - £2,000 are available for conservation work to the fabric and contents of historic listed churches that would not normally be undertaken in the regular cycle or repair and maintenance. Examples include work to listed headstones and monuments, wall paintings, rood screens, fonts, carved stonework, stained glass and altar cloths. For more information and to download an application form see the CCF website at www.churchesconservation.org
Diocesan Small Grants for Parishes For information regarding Diocesan grants towards the cost of building repairs please see the webpage at: https://dioceseofyork.org.uk/running-your-church/parish-finances/diocesan-small-grants
Diocesan Loans For information regarding Diocesan loans to help parishes complete building works please see the webpage at: Diocesan Loans.
William and Jane Morris Fund (Church Conservation Grants) Grants of £500 to £5,000 are awarded for the conservation of decorative features and monuments carried out in accordance with the principles of SPAB. Application deadlines are 31st March and 31st August each year. To apply please go to: Our Grant Programmes - Society of Antiquaries of London (sal.org.uk) The portal will be open to submit grants in 29th February 2024.
The Worshipful Company of Glaziers Their grants are available exclusively for the conservation of historic and/or artistically significant stained and architectural glass. Follow this link: http://glazierscompany.org.uk/conservation-grants/
The FCC Community Action Fund The FCC Community Action Fund provides grants of between £2,00 and £100,000 to not-for-profit organisations for amenity projects eligible under Object D of the Landfill Communities Fund (LCF). Only applications for projects sited within 10 miles of an eligible FCC Environment waste facility can be accepted. To see if you are eligible and to apply, please go to: https://fcccommunitiesfoundation.org.uk/apply/caf
[Page updated 12th February 2024]