Property owned by the Church of England
Various Church bodies and institutions hold property, and their
ability to deal with it is often restricted by law. Following are
details of the principal types of Church property that the Legal
Office most often encounters in its work for the National Church
Further information on dealings with ecclesiastical land in
general (including guidance relating to acquisitions and disposals
under the New Parishes Measure 1943) may be found here, and on dealings
with property owned by the Church Commissioners specifically here.
The residences of rectors and vicars, owned by the rector or vicar
as 'benefice property'.
Owned by a Diocesan Board of Finance as an investment, returns
being used to provide money to pay the stipends of parochial clergy
in the diocese. Further information about the work of the Church
Commissioners' Pastoral Division in relation to parsonages and
glebe is available
- Churches and churchyards
Generally owned by the rector or vicar as 'Church property' (as
opposed to the parsonage, which is 'benefice property') and
maintained by the Parochial Church Council.
- Closed churches
Following a statutory process to remove the legal effects of
consecration, the Church Commissioners or a Diocesan Board of
Finance may dispose of a redundant church for a suitable
alternative use. Further information about the work of the Church
Commissioners' Closed Churches Division is available here.
- Investment or corporate property
This may be owned by Church of England bodies at national, diocesan
and parochial levels. Information about the Church Commissioners'
corporate property may be found