Frequently Asked Questions

Tell me more about …

Stipends, fees and mileage rates
PCCs and charity registration numbers
Church Major Works Fund
Quinquennial Inspections and Grants
Parish resources
Parish buying scheme

What are the Stipends, fees and mileage rates

The stipends, fees and mileage rates for 2023/2024 can be downloaded here.

What is the PCC’s charity registration number

If the income of a PCC is over £100,000 it should be registered with the Charity Commission.  If the income is less than £100,000 the PCC is currently* treated as an 'excepted' charity and will not have a Charity Commissioner registration number.  If a PCC is asked for its governing document, the PCC should state that it is governed by two pieces of legislation:

    "The Parochial Church Councils (Powers) Measure 1956'' as amended, and
    the Church Representation Rules (contained in Schedule 3 to the Synodical Government Measure 1969 as amended).

A PCC can download a PDF document that includes the church name, address and church code from the 'More Information' section of its A Church Near You listing. This PDF, which is an extract from the Church of England’s database of churches, can serve as a certificate for churches requiring proof of their charity status when registering for online and card-based giving.  You will need to request a certificate by clicking on the download button and filling in a short form.

Can we apply for money from the Church Major Works Fund?

The Church Major Works Fund exists to help parishes undertaking major church building projects, by providing loans to assist with cashflow over the project lifetime. Funds are limited, and so parishes applying for support must be able to demonstrate an urgent need, and also that steps are being taken to raise the necessary funding for the project.

The maximum loan normally available is 20% of the cost of works, up to a maximum of £50,000, however these terms can be varied in exceptional circumstances.  No interest is charged on loans to be repaid over five years or less.  Loans repayable over more than five years are charged at 5% interest over the full term of the loan.  This is to encourage early repayment so that funds can be made available to other parishes.

The church building must be insured to at least 75% of the latest valuation, and repayment of the loan must be made by monthly direct debit. Whilst in ordinary circumstances, parishes must be able to demonstrate they have paid their parish share in full for the preceding three years, the impact of the pandemic on parish finances will be considered. A post-pandemic financial recovery plan should be provided alongside the loan application.

Applications are considered at the regular quarterly meetings of the Finance & Administration Committee of the Diocesan Board of Finance.  Application forms should be returned by post or email, with the supporting documentation specified, to Sue Ratcliffe, Assistant Diocesan Secretary, at the Diocesan Office, The Palace, Peterborough PE1 1YB, email Sue Ratcliffe.

Download an application form here

What is the quinquennial inspection and grant?

The quinquennial grant is £312 and is paid towards the cost of your quinquennial inspection. Where the parish concerned has already paid its parish share, the grant will be paid to the PCC. Where a parish has not yet completed its parish share payment for the year, an amount equivalent to the grant will be deducted from the parish share still owing.

For more details about quinquennial inspections and the grant, please contact Sally van der Sterren, DAC Secretary.

Where can I find more general information to help the parish

This website is available – and is a very useful guide.

I’ve heard about a Parish Buying Scheme – do you run this?

There is a scheme to support parishes in local buying decisions. It’s about more than just saving money – it’s about good stewardship and releasing resource for mission and ministry.
You will find a range of competitive deals focused on saving time and money. Each supplier and contract has been thoroughly reviewed allowing parishes to buy with confidence.

Please note, the Parish Buying Scheme is not run by PDBF and we cannot answer any questions on it. More information on this scheme can be found here.

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