Understanding Your Church
sponsored by ecclesiastical
Supporting over 16,000 cathedral and church buildings of The Church of England
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  • 16,000 buildings. One resource.
  • 16,000 buildings. One resource.
  • 16,000 buildings. One resource.
  • 16,000 buildings. One resource.
  • 16,000 buildings. One resource.
  • 16,000 buildings. One resource.
  • 16,000 buildings. One resource.
  • 16,000 buildings. One resource.

About ChurchCare

The first step before considering plans for alteration or development is to think carefully about what is important about your church building. By looking at which parts of the building are of the greatest architectural, historical, artistic and archaeological significance you can start to see what impact changes on these elements may have.

Having this knowledge about your building allows you to then think in an informed way about any proposed alterations, developments or changes you might want to make. This research can lead on to the preparation of a Statement of Significance which is required for faculty and grant applications and is really best done at the beginning of the process rather than half way along or as an afterthought. Full guidance on how to research your building and prepare a Statement of Significance is provided here.

You may want to know more about your church building without any intention of making changes. Updating or writing a church guidebook is an excellent way of introducing visitors to the special aspects of your building. Think about different ways of presenting the information you find and consider different audiences such as local school children.

If you are just starting out in researching your building then click the links to see the following sources:

  • If your church is listed, the listing description will give you some basic information, like the name of the architect and the date of construction. You can obtain the description from your local authority's planning department or search for it on The National Heritage List for England.
  • Another standard source of information is the relevant volume of the Building of England books (often called "Pevsners" after the founding editor of the series) which list and describe the most significant buildings in every part of the country, suitable for both general reader and specialist.
  • The Victoria County History books are invaluable for English local history. Further information can be found in your local library, museum or county record office.
  • Lambeth Palace Library contains plans dating from 1818-1982 for many churches in England and Wales. Older plans of your church can help you reconstruct what it previously looked like and what changes have been made over time.
  • The Church Recorders of The Arts Society are researching churches and recording their architecture and contents. Their findings are recorded and a copy is presented to the church. So far 1,300 churches have been recorded and there may already be a record for your church.
  • The National Monuments Record is the public archive of English Heritage. It holds historic photographs, architectural and archaeological reports, plans and other items related to the historic environment of England.

Twitter Updates


Today, we’re attending the Heritage for BIM conference in London. We want to know how BIM could be used in the pres… https://t.co/Rqy3mBJHCK


An interesting article today in Country life magazine featuring the turret clock at Wimborne Minster with DAC Cloc… https://t.co/OELMuURSpz

Latest Churchcare News

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Upcoming Events


The Association of Festival Churches working with the Diocese of Oxford invites you to its annual gathering.

This will be an opportunity to hear about the work of Festival churches nationally, and to think through some of the issues facing the rural church and the future of rural buildings.

We shall be meeting in the newly refurbished and reordered church of St Mary Magdalene Woodstock on November 30th.

You do not need to be a member of the AFC to attend. It is open to all comers.

Tickets cost £15 plus eventbrite booking fee (once booked not refundable) to include lunch. An invoice can be requested but it is payable by November 1st please.

There is an opportunity to walk in Blenheim Palace Park at lunchtime at no cost (by kind permission of the Operations Director).

For further details and to book click here.


Monday 27 November 2017 - Church House, London