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Church Commissioners appoint new Head of Rural Asset Management

The Church Commissioners today announce the appointment of Carol Hawkey as Head of Rural Asset Management in their Property Investment Department. Carol will be responsible for overseeing more than 100,000 acres of investment farmland throughout England, together with the Commissioners' mineral interests around the country. She will also take the lead in identifying acquisitions and disposals relating to this portfolio.   

Joseph Cannon, Chief Surveyor to the Commissioners, said: "We are pleased to welcome Carol as a senior member of the Commissioners' Property Investment Department. She is a professional rural surveyor and has considerable experience of dealing with let land investment, strategy and management. Carol will lead our internal and external professional teams in maximising the long term financial returns from this key portfolio." 

Carol was brought up on a farm and has a committed interest in rural matters, as well as being a keen musician and accomplished horsewoman. She is married to Jamie, a Minor Canon at Westminster Abbey. 

Carol joins the Commissioners from Bidwells in Cambridge, where as a Partner her responsibilities have included managing a large and varied portfolio on behalf of private and institutional clients. She holds a Master's degree in Land Economy from the University of Aberdeen and is both a Chartered Surveyor and a Fellow of the Central Association of Agricultural Valuers. Carol takes up her new post in December.


The Church Commissioners are responsible for managing a large portfolio of assets, a well diversified mixture of UK and global equities; urban and rural real estate, including holdings in managed property funds in the UK and overseas; bonds and cash; and loans for Church purposes.

The Commissioners fund all clergy pensions earned before 1998. (Pensions earned since then are paid from the separate Funded Scheme, which is funded by contributions from dioceses and other Church bodies.)

The Commissioners manage a closed fund with their expenditure derived from the returns earned from investments under their stewardship. 

Actuaries assess the Commissioners' fund in detail every three years (with yearly reviews) to advise on how much they can safely plan to spend.

The Commissioners' mission is to support the Church of England's ministry, particularly in areas of need and opportunity. Their main responsibilities are:
- to obtain the best possible long term return from a diversified investment portfolio in order both to meet their pension commitments and to provide the maximum sustainable funding for their other purposes such as support for the work of bishops, cathedrals and parish ministry
- in doing so to pay particular regard to making "additional provision for the cure of souls in parishes where such assistance is most required"
- to administer the legal framework for pastoral reorganisation and settling the future of churches which have been closed for worship.

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