Organisation and governance
The Church Commissioners are accountable to the General Synod,
Parliament and the Charity Commission. Annual reports are submitted
to General Synod and Parliament and we answer questions about
our work in both places.
Our work is governed by the Church Commissioners Measure 1947
Who are the Church Commissioners?
The 33 Church
- the Archbishops of Canterbury and York;
- 3 Church Estates Commissioners appoointed wither by the
Crown or the Archbishop of Canterbury. They who represent the
Church Commissioners in the General Synod and (Second Commissioner)
- 11 people elected from General Synod: four bishops, three
clergy, four lay people;
- 2 cathedral deans;
- 9 people appointed by the Crown and the Archbishops;
- 6 holders of State office: the Prime Minister, the
Lord Chancellor, the Lord President of the Council, the Secretary
of State for Culture, Media and Sport, and the Speaker of the House
of Commons and the Speaker of the House of Lords.
Overall policy is directed by the Board of Governors, of which
all Commissioners except the six State office holders are members.
The Board is supported by five committees and a professional
The Commissioners directly employ an administrative staff of
around 160 some of which provide services (e.g. I.T., Finance and
Office services) to the other central Church bodies. Under
these shared service arrangements we also receive legal, HR and
internal audit services.
- The Assets Committee directs asset management
and investment policy, assisted by securities and property
- The Bishoprics & Cathedrals Committee is
responsible for bishops' staffing and working costs, diocesan
bishops' housing and grants towards cathedrals' lay staff
- The Church Buildings (Uses & Disposals)
Committee is responsible for deciding the future of closed
- The Pastoral Committee is responsible for
parish boundary reorganisation, parsonages and glebe (church land
or property which historically formed part of the individual
clergyman's living but is now administered by the diocese for the
benefit of all the clergy);
- The Audit & Risk Committee oversees the
audit of the annual account, internal financial controls, in-house
risk management and links with external auditors.