We organise several events throughout the year and this page is to allow for these papers to be available to a wider audience
Building Performance (2nd October 2014)
Churches are complex buildings which support a vast range of activities; from worship, education and community support, to tourism and the display of museum-quality collections. This imposes great technical demands and at times conservation may conflict with use.
Building performance assessment is a critical tool to successful management, bringing together information not only about the fabric and the microclimate, but also about the services (especially the heating), and current and future uses. By understanding how a building is performing, day-to-day management can be more effective, care and conservation can be more sustainable, and the risks and running costs of alterations minimised.
ChurchCare ran a conference in October 2014 bringing together a range of experts, to explore the assessment of building performance and the control of internal microclimates. The focus of the conference was on the complex case of cathedrals, but its results are also of interest to those working with environmental problems in greater churches, smaller parish churches, and other types of historic buildings.
Below are the various sessions, together with speakers' presentations and additional resources. A more detailed outline of the day is available here
Building Performance in Use: the great unknown?
Dr Bill Bordass (Usable Buildings Trust)
Finding Out How Your Building is Performing: an introduction
Dr Robyn Pender (English Heritage)
A Little and Often: maximising life expectancy of building fabric and reducing long term costs
Graham Abrey (Ingram Consultancy Limited)
Building Conservation and Environment: commissioning useful research and understanding practical results
Tobit Curteis (Tobit Curteis Associates)
Exeter Cathedral: working collaboratively to understand the root causes of fabric decay
Camilla Finlay (Acanthus Clews Architects)
Winchester Cathedral: planning, commissioning and using conservation consultants when managing major projects
Annabelle Boyes and Nick Cox (Winchester Cathedral | Nick Cox Architects)With introduction by The Very Revd James Atwell, Dean of Winchester
Durham Cathedral: exhibition and display in complex mediaeval spaces. Environmental and conservation strategies
Christopher Cotton (Purcell)
Conservation of Fabric and Collections in Cathedrals: environmental factors
Tobit Curteis (Tobit Curteis Associates)
Chaired by Jennie Page (Cathedrals Fabric Commission) with panel members from The Edge, SPAB, Heritage Lottery Fund and English Heritage
Festival Churches: Mission and Community (25th March 2019)
The Association of Festival Churches held its third day conference at Sheffield cathedral on 25th March 2019.
The Chair Sir Tony Baldry introduced the speakers and led the discussions. Three presentations from that conference are accessible below and a summary of the conference is available here.
- Festival Churches: How to develop flexible buildings for vibrant congregations and communities – Dr. Joseph Elders
- Churches for everyone: the potential of Festival Churches to revitalise community life – Wendy Coombe MBE
- The Norwich Diocesan Churches Trust: reflections on the first three years - The Venerable Steven Betts
FAC Conference 2019
Liverpool Cathedral & Chester Cathedral (23-24 July 2019)
The biennial FAC Conference offered a chance for those involved in the care and conservation of cathedral buildings to meet together to discuss business under the Care of Cathedrals Measure, topics of common interest, and new developments, for example in legislation, funding and good practice. Each cathedral was encouraged to send their FAC Chair and Secretary (plus the Cathedral Administrator if they are not also the FAC Secretary) as this event was a valuable networking and professional development opportunity. Cathedral staff, cathedral architects and others with an interest in cathedral buildings and planning issues were also welcome. There were opportunities to share experiences and gain new perspectives with the host cathedrals of Liverpool and Chester. The 2019 conference included presentations on topics including Cathedrals and Pilgrimage, Visitor Engagement Planning, and Cathedral Events Policies, tours of both cathedrals, and a gala dinner in Liverpool Cathedral.
The next conference will be held in 2021
DAC Conference 2019 (Blackburn)
Healthy churches transforming communities
The 2019 DAC conference with DMPCs helped us to stand back from some of the daily issues and to think more about why work with churches and church buildings matters – how a church building is part of delivering ministry and how it still stands a sign to the community that the church is there for them.
Selected papers from the conference are available to download below
- Exeter rural churches project - Marian Carson
- Managing Projects in Churches: Insurance Implications - Leigh Ide
- Strategic Planning and Church Buildings - Dr Joe Elders, Peter Wagon
- Access in church buildings -Revd Bill Braviner
DAC and DEO Conference 2020 (Virtual)
The 2020 DAC and DEO conference, due to be held in Gloucester, became a virtual event for Diocesan Advisory Committee and Diocesan Environmental Officers. Many of the presentations were recorded, and these, along with supporting materials, are presented here
Videos and available presentations have been made available below
Tuesday, 8th Sept 2020
Matt Fulford - A Zero Carbon Church - St Michaels and All Angels Withington
Wednesday, 9th Sept 2020
Chris Stark, Chief Executive, UK Commission on Climate Change: Getting to net zero, 20-minute presentation and 25 minutes of questions.
Church of England Environmental Programme: national picture; The Rt Revd Nicholas Holtham (Chair, Environmental Working Group) Catherine Ross (Open and Sustainable Churches Officer), Jo Chamberlain (National Environmental Officer)
Southwark: Philip Fletcher (DAC Chair) and Luke Tatum (DAC Secretary): The 5th mark of mission
Bristol: Simon Pugh Jones (DAC Chair): Integrating the environment into the work of the DAC
Oxford: Maranda St John Nicolle (DEO): How Oxford is using the energy audit programme to help its churches
Birmingham: Patrick Gerrard (DEO): Underpew heating in St Michael, Baddesley, to help it become zero carbon
London: Brian Cuthbertson (DEO): Solar PV against the odds at St James, Clerkenwell
Carlisle: Richard Waller (DEO): in-river hydro schemes for local energy generation
Word Cloud of Responses, taken at the end of the day 2 (Wednesday).
Thursday 10th Sept 2020
Dave Bookless - opening thoughts and prayers
The Rt Revd Richard Cheetham, Bishop of Kingston - my environmental story.
DEO Open Mike session
DAC Conference 2021 (Virtual)
The 2021 DAC conference, hosted by Gloucester, was a virtual event split over two days on the 28th and 29th September 2021 and was divided into the four themes below.
- The annual meeting and a presentation and discussion on Transforming Effectiveness
- A presentation from the Dean of the Arches on the faculty rules and net-zero, and presentations around the environment and adaptation
- An interview with the Director of Icon, a presentation on the Stoke Orchard wall paintings and some diocesan contributions
- Extended and wider use of churches and discussion over how to start a conversation with a church about its future.
Videos and available presentations have been made available below.
Adapting a medieval church building for 21st-century needs, Grappenhall, St Wilfrid
Masonry conservation workshop, Redbrook, St Saviour
Project Blackjack, Cirencester, St John the Baptist
Project Blackjack: Opening ceremony
Reordering Leckhampton, St Philip & St James
Working with the DAC: Bovey Tracy, St John the Evangelist
Wall painting conservation, Stoke Orchard, St James the Great
DAC Conference 2022 (Leeds)
Churches and Communities: Building One Another Up
The annual conference for church buildings was hosted in 2022 by the Diocese of Leeds between the 20th and 22nd September, and for the first time in three years, was held in person. Talks included an update from the IHBC; discussions around being Simpler, Humbler, and Bolder; an overview of the Review of the Mission and Pastoral Measure; sustainability and strategic approaches to church support; churchyard management; and Heritage Action Zones.
Visits included Halton: St Wilfrid, Gipton: The Epiphany, Holbeck: St Luke, Far Headingley: St Chad, Leeds Minster, Leeds: St John the Evangelist (CCT), and Boar Lane: Holy Trinity
Selected papers are available below
DAC Conference 2023 (Bristol)
The Importance of Welcome
The annual conference for church buildings was hosted in 2023 by the Diocese of Bristol between the 5th and 7th of September,
The overall theme focused on “welcome”, including papers around Net Zero, accessibility, social engagement, and contested heritage.
Visits included Bristol: St Nicholas, Bristol,:St Matthew and St Nathanael, Bristol: St Stephen, Bristol Cathedral, Cotham: St Saviour, Clifton: All Saints, and St Mary, Redcliffe.
The full programme is available here and the papers are available below
- Implementing the Routemap to Net Zero Carbon 2030: How is our Journey progressing so far? - Julian Atkins, Net Zero Programme Director, Church of England Environment Programme
- Working with Churchyards - Andrea Gilpin, Caring for God’s Acre
- Update from NLHF - Jacob Eliot, Head of Policy at the National Lottery Heritage Fund
- Diocese of Bristol's approach to achieving Net Zero (successes and failures) - Amy Dartington, Diocese of Bristol, Environment and Sustainability Manager
- They like it (at) Upham: trial of a heat battery - David Cain, Portsmouth DAC Secretary
- Carbon Reduction Options for Churches Using Oil for Heating - Dan McNaughton, Senior Building Services Engineer, Historic England
- Lifts in Churches—the Ups and Downs - Rhiannon Rhys, Historic England
- Beyond ramps, toilets and t-loops: getting in and joining in…- The Revd Katie Tupling, Disability Adviser, Oxford Diocese & Chair of National Network of Diocesan Disability Advisers
- Sharing the Sacred Space: navigating leases and shared use of Church building - Lee Coley, Diocesan Registrar for the Diocese of Bristol
- 'Space for Action: how the church building can provide the space for a response to those in need, with a case study of two churches supporting asylum seekers and refugees.’ - Wendy Coombey, Community Partnership and Funding Officer,
Diocese of Hereford
- "Asking if possible" Solar Together Schemes - The Revd Capt Clive Deverell, Vicar of West Swindon and Lydiard Tregoze
- Racial Justice and Social Inclusion: Fulfilling the Love Command - Guy Hewitt, Racial Justice Director, Church of England
- Physical legacies of enslavement in the Diocese of Bristol: A pilot investigation into contested heritage - Alice Kinghorn, History PhD Student at Bristol University
- All are one in Christ: learning from the past to rebuild the future - The Revd Canon Rod Cosh, Priest-in-Charge of Henbury
- Sharing marginalised histories at National Trust Properties - Rupert Goulding, Interim Head Curator
- Unlearning History: getting to grips with Contested Heritage at Churches Conservation Trust - Chloe Meredith, Learning and Participation Projects Manager for the Churches Conservation Trust
- (Not) Everything Everywhere All At Once: Contested heritage in the Church of England - Janet Berry, Head of Conservation and Collections Care, Church of England