A list of potential sources of funding for the repairs and improvements of church buildings is shown below. The list is not comprehensive and will be added to or amended based on feedback from churches. A number of local trusts have not been included as they are only prepared to fund projects in their local areas. Most of the organisations mentioned will not consider assisting projects which are already underway so it is important to make early contact with each organisation to check their individual requirements.
Congregations should consult with their dioceses prior to undertaking any major works. In addition to providing advice on any local sources of funding (diocesan grants / local trusts etc) dioceses will be able to advise on any permissions etc required for the works.
Grants and loans may be made available from Provincial Funds to help in carrying out approved repairs and improvements to church buildings (churches, church halls, rectories etc.) Routine maintenance is the responsibility of the congregation. Congregations seeking grants or loans should read the guidance BG/2 and complete the application form BG/1 prior to sending it to the appropriate Diocesan Committee. The Diocese must approve the application before it is submitted to the General Synod Office. Application for Provincial grants, except towards surveys, will not be considered where the works costs less than £1,500.
There are three sources of provincial funding available to assist with building works.
Dunderdale Building Fund
The maximum grant that can be made is £2,500 and grants will not exceed 50% of the total cost
Maintenance and Development Fund Grants
Whilst there are no fixed limits to the size of grant available they rarely exceed £30,000. The number and size of grants is also subject to the availability of funds. Grants will not normally exceed 50% of the total cost. (There is currently a moratorium on such grants. No grants will be available until 2014 at the earliest.)
Building Loan Fund
The Provincial building loan fund exists to advance loans to Charges to assist in the financing of building projects. Loans are normally made for a maximum of 5 years. (In exceptional circumstances this can be increased to 10 years.) Interest is charged (currently 5% per annum) and loans are normally repaid in equal instalments over the period of the loan. Loans can also be made available over shorter periods to assist with cash flow requirements during a building project.
Local Authorities do not currently contribute towards the costs incurred on the repair or maintenance to church buildings.
Allchurches Trust Ltd
The objects of the Trust are to promote the Christian religion and to contribute to the funds of any charitable institution but the majority of the donations are to dioceses and cathedrals of the Church of England. It has also a general fund which responds to requests for financial assistance from Anglican churches and churches of other denominations. The Trust supports appeals from churches for building and restoration projects, repair of church fabric. Contact: The Charity Grants Adviser, Allchurches Trust Limited, Beaufort House, Brunswick Road, Gloucester,GL1 1JZ; Tel 01452 873189; Application forms available from their website: www.allchurches.co.uk
Garfield Weston Foundation
Applicants must be registered charities promoting education, medicine and religion. Apply to The Administrator, Garfield Weston Foundation, Weston Centre, Bowater House, 10 Grosvenor Street, London, W1K 4QY; telephone 020 7589 6363.
The Gannochy Trust may consider applications for projects if there is a community benefit through the use of the church building as a community centre of village hall if there is not a similar facility nearby. Applications must be in writing and sent to the Gannochy Trust, Kincarrathie House Drive, Pitcullen Crescent, Perth, PH2 7HX, telephone 01738 620653. Website: www.gannochytrust.org.uk
The Glaziers’ Trust
The Trust targets its resources to save historically important stained glass in churches and other public locations. Grants are restricted to glass, leading, saddle bars, and fixing. The average grant is around £1,000. www.worshipfulglaziers.com
The William and Jane Morris Fund
The Fund offers grants of up to £1,000 towards work concerned with the conservation of decorative features such as, stained glass windows, sculpture, furniture, internal monuments and tombs, and wall paintings in churches, chapels and other places of worship built before 1896. www.sal.org.uk/grants/williamandjanemorris
National Churches Trust
This Trust supports a wide variety of projects and will consider grant applications for repairs and major improvements to places of worship throughout the UK.
Scottish Churches Architectural Heritage Trust
This Trust assists congregations of any denomination in Scotland in the preservation and upkeep of church buildings which are in regular us for public worship, principally by raising funds for their repair and restoration and by acting as a source of technical advice and assistance on maintenance and repair. Apply to the Director, 15 North Bank Street, Edinburgh, EH1 2LP, telephone 0131 225 8644. Website www.scaht.org.uk
Scottish Redundant Churches Trust
The Trust supports churches threatened by closure due to the condition of the buildings. The Trust can be contacted at 4 Queen’s Gardens, St Andrews, Fife KY16 9TA, telephone 01334 472032, Website: www.srct.org.uk
Landfill Tax Credit Scheme
A portion of the Landfill Tax levied by the Government on operators of landfill sites may be used to support the maintenance, repair or restoration of a building in use for religious worship so long as the building is open to the public, non-profit making and located within the vicinity of a landfill site. Website: www.entrust.org.uk.
Big Lottery Fund
The Fund operates a number of funding programmes. The focus tends to be used on assisting projects which will make a difference in a community. Website: www.biglotteryfund.org.uk
Heritage Lottery Fund
It is one of the “good causes” funds supported from the proceeds of the National Lottery. It gives grants towards urgent repairs to listed places of worship. The fund operates in conjunction with Historic Scotland. Website:
As with the scheme run by the Heritage Lottery Fund, grants are given for urgent repairs at listed buildings. The same application form may be used to apply to either or both of Heritage Lottery Fund and Historic Scotland. Applications must be submitted online through the Heritage Lottery Fund website (even if only applying to Historic Scotland for grant funding). Website: www.historic-scotland.gov.uk
Listed Places of Worship Grant Scheme
The Listed Places of Worship Grant Scheme makes grants towards the VAT incurred in making repairs to listed buildings mainly used for public worship throughout the UK. Application forms and guidance notes are available from Listed Places of Worship Grant Scheme, PO Box 609, Newport, South Wales, NP10 8QD telephone number 0845 601 5945 or from their website: www.lpwscheme.org.uk.
Green Energy Initiatives
Energy Saving Trust
The Trust does not offer funding but its website contains useful information and links to other organisations. www.energysavingtrust.org.uk.
Climate Challenge Fund
Aimed at community groups, schools and charitable organisations, preferably in partnership with others, the Fund may provide financial assistance towards the feasibility and subsequent development and installation of projects that directly reduce carbon emissions. Website: ccf.keepscotlandbeautiful.org
Rural Direct – A guide to finding funds for Churches
Rural Direct has compiled a list of potential funders that support specifically faith based activities and projects and others that support faith based organisations in projects for the benefit of the whole community. Download the briefing here.
The General Synod of the Scottish Episcopal Church does not accept responsibility for any loss or liability which may arise from reliance on information or expressions of opinion contained in this document.
General Synod of the Scottish Episcopal Church
Scottish Charity No SC015962