Apply to the Cathedrals Fabric Commission for England

The Cathedral Administrator is responsible for making sure applications are made in the proper way, although they do not have to submit applications themselves.

We can help you navigate the application process from beginning to end.

Wakefield Cathedral

Completing the forms

You must use the standard forms to apply.

You will find the instructions for completing the forms in the Care of Cathedrals Rules 2006.

“All but the simplest proposals should have been discussed with the FAC, the Commission and other relevant consultees before a formal application is made.”

Thomas Ashley, Senior Cathedrals Officer

Your checklist for applying to the Commission

As Cathedral Administrator, have you:

Sent a copy of the public notice and supporting documents to the relevant planning authorities?
Displayed two copies of the public notice inside and outside the cathedral for 28 days?
Sent the certificate of publication to the Commission’s secretariat?

Please send all your documents electronically.

If we ask for more information, please also send the additional documents to all parties notified in the original application.

What will we do after receiving your application?

We will consider:

Commenting on an application

Consultees have 28 days to make written representations on an application to us. They should send their comments to the Commission’s secretariat and copy them to the cathedral administrator to give the cathedral a chance to respond.

Typical consultees on applications include:

You should have already engaged with these consultees before making a formal application. However, you are still legally required to consult them formally at the point of application: this is to make sure that statutory bodies, and members of the public, have an opportunity to make a meaningful contribution to the procedures under the Measure.


We will determine the application once:

  • The 28-day consultation period is over
  • We have received the certificate of publication
  • And we have considered any representations made by consultees or members of the public

When making decisions, we take into account:

  • The role of the cathedral as the seat of a bishop and a centre of worship and mission
  • The need to avoid harm to the architectural, archaeological, artistic and historic significance of the cathedral and its precinct

A successful proposal for change is one that succeeds both in terms of mission and heritage.

We can decide to:

  • Approve the application unconditionally
  • Approve the application subject to conditions
  • Refuse the application
  • Defer the application to obtain more information from chapter
  • Informally advise chapter to withdraw its proposal and resubmit it in a revised form

Following determination, the Commission’s secretary has ten days to send a notice of the decision to the cathedral administrator, the Fabric Advisory Committee secretary and the relevant consultees.

A chapter or tenant has the right to appeal a refusal or against any imposed conditions.


You must display the decision notice inside and outside the cathedral. You must notify the Commission’s secretariat as soon as the approved works are complete.

Secular planning consents

You may also need secular consent for works done to a cathedral or within its precinct.

Planning permission
Listed building consent
Scheduled monument consent

Fill in form 15 to inform us that the chapter has made a secular application.