Ecclesiastical court judgments – 2018

Index to ecclesiastical court judgments reviewed during 2018, and links to earlier annual reviews

As in previous years, the judgments reviewed in L&RUK during 2018 have been grouped under the following headings:

This summary also includes links to other posts relating to ecclesiastical law.


Reordering, extensions & other building works

[top]

Substantial reordering

Re St. Alphege Seasalter [2017] ECC Can 2. Deputy Commissary General granted petition for: glazed frameless inner doors; a new limestone floor with under-floor heating; the removal of a plywood ceiling, the oak reredos on the east wall, 1950s pews, replacement organ, lighting and cables; new lighting and projection facilities; introduction of chairs; and freestanding ‘extension’ in churchyard. [Back] [Top]

Re Bath Abbey [2018] EACC 1 The Dean of Arches refused the Victorian Society leave to appeal against the decision of the Chancellor of the Diocese to allow the replacement of the Abbey’s nave pews with chairs. [Re Bath Abbey [2018] EACC 1] [Back] [Top]

Re Holy Trinity Kirk Ireton [2017] ECC Der 5 Faculty granted for removal of 15 unfixed and damaged Victorian pine pews with 39 wooden chairs with upholstered seats. [Link to judgment] [Back] [Top]

Re Holy Trinity Headington Quarry [2018] ECC Oxf 1 Faculty granted for extensive reordering of the Grade II church and the building of an extension in the churchyard to accommodate toilets, a kitchen, a store room, a meeting room and refurbished choir vestry and vicar’s vestry and toilet. [Back] [Top]

Re Christ Church Surbiton Hill [2018] ECC Swk 2 A new major reordering was proposed, to which the Victorian Society objected to suggested tiles and the upholstered chairs. Chancellor decided that proposals were reasonable and granted a faculty. He commented on the second ‘Duffield’ question and on the status of the CBC’s guidance regarding chairs. [Back] [Top]

Re St. Peter & St. Paul Bassingbourn [2018] ECC Ely 1 Faculty granted for majority of proposed extensive reordering of the 13th century Grade I listed church. There were ten parties opponent, as well as opposition from the amenity societies. [Back] [Top]

Re SS Phillip and James Leckhampton [2018] ECC Glo Sections of the judgment which will be of general interest to parties involved in the reordering of a church under the faculty jurisdiction are reproduced in our post Lessons from Pip and Jim’s. The legal aspects of the case are examined in more detail in a later post, Balancing mission, aesthetics and heritage of parish churches – Part III.[Re SS Philip and James [2018] Ecc Glo] [Post] [Back] [Top]

Re St. Thomas Trowbridge [2018] ECC Sal 1 Chancellor granted a faculty for the substantial reordering, but was not prepared for the lectern and reader’s desk to be removed, being part of the church’s set of liturgical furniture. Also chancel step should remain uncovered. [Re St. Thomas Trowbridge [2018] ECC Sal 1] [Back] [Top]

Re St. Mary Lydiard Tregoz [2018] ECC Bri 3 An extensive programme of reordering was proposed; CBC had a number of serious reservations, which were rebutted by the petitioners. Chancellor rejected the Council’s concerns and granted a faculty. [Re St. Mary Lydiard Tregoz [2018] ECC Bri 3] [Back] [Top]

Re St. Mary Handsworth [2018] ECC Bir 4 Faculty granted for major reordering of Grade II* church, apart from total replacement of all nave pews. Chancellor invited parish to consider whether some Victorian pews, particularly those with umbrella stands, could be retained towards the back of the nave, so visitors could be aware of what was in place before re-ordering. [Re St. Mary Handsworth [2018] ECC Bir 4] [Back] [Top]

Re St. Michael Breaston [2018] ECC Der 4 Faculty granted for substantial reordering proposals of Grade I church: new heating; audio-visual system; electrical works; replacement of pews with chairs; disposal of the pulpit; relocation of the choir stalls and organ; and works to the floor. [Re St. Michael Breaston [2018] ECC Der 4] [Back] [Top]

Re The Holy Redeemer Lamorbey [2018] ECC Roc 1 Chancellor granted a faculty for substantial reordering (~£1M) subject to a condition that no work should commence until the Parochial Church Council had raised at least £900,000. [Re The Holy Redeemer Lamorbey [2018] ECC Roc 1] [Back] [Top]

Reordering and alternative uses

Re St. Bartholomew Areley Kings [2018] ECC Wor 2 Faculty granted for conservation of three panels of reredos, but not for its return to the east wall until scheme for its location was brought forward. [Back] [Top]

Re St. Mary Southampton City Centre [2018] ECC Win 3 Faculty granted for a diocesan project to establish a new congregation at the church, in association with Holy Trinity Brompton and its Churches Revitalisation Trust. [Back] [Top]

Re All Saints Harbury [2018] ECC Cov 5 Faculty granted to allow a temporary reordering, authorised by the Archdeacon, to remain permanently. [Back] [Top]

Re Christ Church Laxey [2018] ECC IOM 1 confirmatory faculty for the retention of a nave altar, contrary to advice of DAC. Altar to be raised to more appropriate height, and at all times be covered by a Laudian fall. [Re Christ Church Laxey [2018] ECC Sodor 1] [Back] [Top]

Re St. Michael & All Angels Maxstoke [2018] ECC Bir 3 Faculty granted for several items of reordering. Only contentious item was removal of unused Victorian font; to be placed outside church. [Re St. Michael & All Angels Maxstoke [2018] ECC Bir 3] [Back] [Top]

Other building works, including re-roofing

Re St. Simon Zelotes Upper Chelsea [2018] ECC Lon 1 Faculty granted for reordering west end of the church, accessible WC and enhanced catering facilities & musicians’ area: “any prejudice to the architectural integrity is outweighed by the pastoral and liturgical benefits”. [Re St. Simon Zelotes Upper Chelsea [2018] ECC Lon 1] [Back] [Top]

Re St. Luke Middlestown [2018] ECC Lee1 Against the DAC recommendation based partly on assessment of photograph, Chancellor granted faculty for replacement of existing pews with upholstered chairs. [Back] [Top]

Re St. Mary Magdalene Adlestrop [2017] ECC Glo 2 Chancellor granted faculty for installation of heraldic hatchment, providing design on the hatchment is formally approved by a Herald from College of Arms. “The Jane Austen connection does not preserve in aspic this Church”. [Re St. Mary Magdalene Adlestrop [2017] ECC Glo 2.] [Link to post] [Back] [Top]

Re St. Mary the Virgin Wotton-under-Edge with Ozleworth [2017] ECC Glo 3 Deputy Chancellor granted a faculty of reordering works, conditional on supplementary information being supplied by the petitioners. [Link to post] [ Back] [Top]

Re All Saints Buncton [2018] ECC Chi 1 The Chancellor granted a confirmatory faculty for treatment of walls, but strongly criticised the architect for allowing work to proceed without first making sure that a faculty had been granted; sanctions considered, and judgment sent to dioceses where architect worked. [Re All Saints Buncton [2018] ECC Chi 1] [Back] [Top]

Re St. Nicholas Codsall [2018] ECC Lic 1 Faculty granted for reordering of church. Any impact on the bell-ringers should not outweigh the benefits of providing appropriate toilet and refreshment facilities. [Re St. Nicholas Codsall [2018] ECC Lic 1] [Back] [Top]

Re Holy Trinity Long Itchington [2018] ECC Cov 3 Amendment of earlier faculty in 2016 in order to authorise a different type of upholstered chair with upholstered seats and upholstered back pads within a wooden frame. [Back] [Top]

Re St. Mary Droxford [2018] ECC Por 1 The proposal was for an extension to the church. The Diocesan Advisory Committee and the Church Buildings Council had reservations about the use of space for the various facilities proposed for the extension. The Chancellor was satisfied that the proposed arrangement of the facilities in the extension offered an appropriate solution to meeting the needs of the parish. [Re St. Mary Droxford [2018] ECC Por 1] [Back] [Top]

Re St. Mary West Chiltington [2018] ECC Chi 2 Deputy Chancellor granted petition for installation of two new gas-fired central heating boilers in link structure between the church and the new vestry. One written objection that the proposal installation would take up valuable storage space. [Back] [Top]

Re St. Philip & St. Jacob Bristol [2018] ECC Bri 1 Faculty granted for removal of pews/bases and installation of a new floor ‘floating’ above the original floor, to create a smooth, flat surface. Choice of replacement chairs to be overseen by the acting Archdeacon. [Re St. Philip & St. Jacob Bristol [2018] ECC Bri 1] [Back] [Top]

In the matter of a building in the churchyard of Christ Church Spitalfields and an application for restoration order and a petition for a confirmatory faculty [2018] EACC 3 Arches Court granted permission to appeal on some of the grounds raised by the applicants with regard to the judgment of the consistory court of the Diocese of London, Chancellor June Rodgers sitting as Deputy Chancellor, [2017] ECC Lon 1. [Back] [Top]

Re All Saints Pickwell [2018] ECC Lei 3 A confirmatory faculty was sought for use of Sarnafil covering for the north-aisle roof of Grade I church. Sarnafil covering to remain, but be subject to inspection. Churchwarden personally to pay the costs of the proceedings. [Re All Saints Pickwell [2018] ECC Lei 3] [Back] [Top]

Re St. Aidan Acomb [2018] ECC Yor 2 Faculty granted to carry out certain items of refurbishment to the church, including “install etched safety glass panels between the main entrance lobby and the church”. [Re St. Aidan Acomb [2018] ECC Yor 2] [Back] [Top]

Re St. Stephen Acomb [2018] ECC Yor 3 The petitioners sought a number of changes to the church, of which only introduction of external floodlighting to the spire/tower was contentious. Faculty granted subject to conditions. [Re St. Stephen Acomb [2018] ECC Yor 3] [Back] [Top]

Re St. Giles Kellamarsh [2018] ECC Der 2 Chancellor highlighted a ‘serious procedural problem’ re: Public Notice; interim faculty granted on condition that if notice of objection was received, then the work should stop. [Re St. Giles Kellamarsh [2018] ECC Der 2] [Comment] [Back] [Top]

Re St Wilfred Portsea [2018] ECC Por 3 Faculty granted for removal of two WW I war memorials and soldier’s grave marker from unlisted mission church, 1907, and placing them on display with other war memorabilia in adjacent community room, to be more visible and accessible to the community. [Re St Wilfred Portsea [2018] ECC Por 3] [Back] [Top]

Re St. James Louth [2018] ECC Lin 1 Faculty granted for removal of worn Victorian tiles at the west end of nave, apart from around the font, and replacing them with Cadeby limestone paving. Victorian Society and Heritage England objected. [Re St. James Louth [2018] ECC Lin 1] [Back] [Top]

Re All Saints Branston [2018] ECC Lin 2 Faculty granted for relocation of reredos from St. James Grimsby (now Grimsby Minster) to All Saints Branston. Archdeacon to prepare list of furnishings removed in 1995 with a view to the Chancellor making an order in respect of those items. [Re All Saints Branston [2018] ECC Lin 2] [Back] [Top]

Re Mariners’ Church Gloucester [2018] ECC Glo 2 Faculty granted a faculty for reordering of 9th century proprietary chapel, which has only relatively recently become subject to faculty jurisdiction. Some items were not approved. [Re Mariners’ Church Gloucester [2018] ECC Glo 2] [Note] [Back] [Top]

Re St. Aidan Bamburgh [2018] ECC New 2 Petitioners sought to re-lay area around font with stone to match the existing stone around it, and to relocate the slate to the south side. SPAB objected, but Chancellor was satisfied that the proposed work was necessary in interests of safety from trip-hazards, and also would not result in harm to the significance of the church. [Re St. Aidan Bamburgh [2018] ECC New 2] [Back] [Top]

Re St. Andrew Kettleburgh [2017] ECC SEI 4 A faculty was granted for reordering, which included works to the south porch and the west end of the nave of the Grade I listed church, including the repositioning of three rows of pews and adjustment of floor levels. [Re St. Andrew Kettleburgh [2017] ECC SEI 4] [Back] [Top]

Re St. Peter & St. Paul Great Somerford [2018] ECC Bri 2 A small aging congregation of the church wished to increase the flexibility of use of the church and thus increase the numbers of those who attend church. The Chancellor considered the proposals would result in little if any significant harm to the church as a building of special architectural or historical interest. Faculty granted. [Re St. Peter & St. Paul Great Somerford [2018] ECC Bri 2] [Back] [Top]

Re St. John the Baptist Bamford and Derwent [2018] ECC Der 3 Petitioners wished to remove four pews to provide a larger space for nave communions and village events. Chancellor decided that any harm to the significance of the Grade II* listed building would be ‘low’, but he only authorised the removal of three of the pews; removal of the fourth pew would provide very little extra space. [Re St. John the Baptist Bamford and Derwent [2018] ECC Der 3] [Back] [Top]

Re St. John the Baptist Hillmorton (1) [2017] ECC Cov 9 Faculty for reordering granted as Chancellor was satisfied that any harm caused by the proposed works to the church’s special significance was only moderate. Commenting on its views of the Georgian Group re: the proposed eating area, the Chancellor stated that it failed to appreciate what is necessary if the church is to carry out its work in the modern world. [Re St. John the Baptist Hillmorton [2017] ECC Cov 1] [Back] [Top]

Re All Saints Rothbury [2018] ECC New 3 The petition proposed various works to the church roof and other parts of the fabric. The Chancellor granted a faculty for a safety rope running down the inner radius of the spiral staircase of the tower, as suggested by the Tower Captain but contrary to the advice of the church architect. [Re All Saints Rothbury [2018] ECC New 3] [Link to post] [Back] [Top]

Re St. Augustine Slade Green [2018] ECC Roc 2 Faculty granted for the removal and sale of the Vicar’s Stall. Victorian Society did not support the proposal, but Chancellor satisfied that it was not practical to use the stall where it was, and there was no other appropriate place to put it. [Re St. Augustine Slade Green [2018] ECC Roc 2] [Back] [Top]

Removal and replacement of pews &c

Re St. Luke Tutshill [2017] ECC Glo 1, Deputy Chancellor gave interim judgment approving majority of the works, but required petitioners to undertake further investigations or provide further information and/or justifications for the remaining items. [Back] [Top]

Re Holy Trinity Sittingbourne [2018] ECC Can 1* Chancellor refused petition to replace pews with metal-framed, upholstered chairs; replacement chairs not appropriate replacement for pews in this particular church. [Back] [Top]

Re St. Mary and St. Michael Cartmel [2017] ECC Car 2 Faculty granted for reordering, including replacement of 18 oak nave pews with Howe 40/4 chairs and the re-siting of the Victorian font. Neither Historic England nor the Victorian Society objected. Two letters of objection from parishioners. [Back] [Top]

Re St. Lawrence Gnosall [2018] ECC Lic 3 The petitioners wished to remove two rows of pews from the west end of the nave of the church, in order to create space for church and community activities. The Chancellor was satisfied that it was appropriate to grant a faculty. The church would remain predominantly pewed and any harm to the special significance of the Grade I church would be modest and would be outweighed by the potential benefits. [Back] [Top]

Re Our Lady of Bloxham [2018] ECC Oxf 2 Confirmatory faculty granted for removal and disposal of seven pews, removed without faculty in 2011, but the Chancellor required that the pew frontals removed at the same time were returned to the church. [Back] [Top]

Re St. John the Baptist Heaton Mersey [2018] ECC Man 1 Faculty granted for removal of pews and replacement with ICS stacking chairs of solid oak with an oak veneered plywood seat and back. The Victoria Society objected to the proposal, but was not a party opponent. [Back] [Top]

Re All Saints Little Bealings [2018] ECC SEI 1 Faculty granted for major re-ordering of this 13th century grade II church; although harm will result, and for two specific proposals harm with a high impact, not only is that harm judged as being justified clearly and convincingly in terms of the needs of and benefit to the church, but that these proposals offer the only realistic way in which this church can be saved from inevitable closure. [Back] [Top]

Re All Saints Sanderstead [2018] ECC Swk 4 Chancellor concluded that the introduction of chairs would cause only moderate harm to the church, and that this harm would be outweighed by the resulting public benefit. Faculty granted. [Re All Saints Sanderstead [2018] ECC Swk 4] [Back] [Top]

Re All Saints Cawood [2018] ECC Yor 5 Chancellor granted faculty for removal and disposal of six pews, and erection of additional plaque under the present War Memorial wall plaque to add ten missing names; an interim faculty for the latter had already been granted. [Re All Saints Cawood [2018] ECC Yor 5] [Back] [Top]

Re All Saints Barrowby [2018] ECC Lin 3 Chancellor granted a faculty for (inter alia) the replacement of all the pews with upholstered chairs, provided that the fabric would be of a neutral colour, rather than the red colour originally proposed. [Re All Saints Barrowby [2018] ECC Lin 3] [Back] [Top]

[2017 Judgments] [[2016 Judgments] [2015 Judgments] [2014 Judgments]


Church Treasures/Sale of Paintings &c/Loans

Re Romsey Abbey [2018] ECC Win 1 Faculty granted for “challenging and controversial” depiction of St. Ethelflaeda, one of the patron saints of the Abbey, despite divided opinions; “the Abbey is a large enough space, physically and spiritually, to accommodate both camps.” [Re Romsey Abbey [2018] ECC Win 1] [Back] [Top].

[2017 Judgments] [2016 Judgments] [2014 Judgments]


Audio Visual Equipment

Re St. Mary Chartham [2017] ECC Can 1. Commissary General granted a faculty ,subject to conditions, and set out principles and guidelines to be followed in respect of future applications for the installation of CCTV equipment.

[2017 Judgments] [2016 Judgments] [2015 Judgments] [Top]


Telecommunications

Re The Venerable Bede Wyther [2018] ECC Lee 3 “a long and unhappy history”, the determination being a re-re-amended petition”. The Chancellor concerned about the lack of proper representation, the proposed draft lease/licence, Before proceedings were concluded the telecoms company decided to withdraw from the site; the Chancellor had to approve terms for the decommissioning of the equipment. [Link to judgment] [Top]

[2017 Judgments] [2016 Judgments] [2015 Judgments] [2014 Judgments]


Exhumation

Problems of access

Re Torrisholme Cemetery [2018] Ecc Bla 1* Faculty refused for exhumation of remains of her baby, buried fifteen years earlier, and reburial closer to petitioner. Former partner objected and became party opponent. Not exceptional circumstances under criteria of Alsager and Blagdon. [Back] [Top]

In the Matter of Howard Charles Griffiths [2018] ECC Bir 1* Chancellor refused permission for exhumation of petitioner’s father’s remains, in order that they might be buried in another burial ground with the remains of his mother, who died in 2017. No mistake in the place of interment and 22 years had elapsed since the installation of the problematic gas governor site. [Back] [Top]

In the Matter of Sydney Clement Levy (Deceased) [2018] ECC New 1 Faculty granted for dis-interment of remains from vault to permit repairs to make it water-tight. [Back] [Top]

Re Stile Cop Cemetery [2018] ECC Lic 2* Petitioner genuinely found location of plot unsuitable, but Chancellor could not find exceptional reason to justify exhumation. [Back] [Top]

Family graves

Re Bingham Cemetery [2018] ECC S&N 1* No exceptional circumstances to justify the exhumations; faculty refused. This was not a case of moving remains to a family grave, but exhumation from a family grave in which it was possible for the petitioner’s remains to be interred in due course. [Link to post] [Link to post, costs] [Back] [Top]

Errors in burial

In the Matter of David Ernest Newton [2018] ECC She 1 Faculty granted for exhumation of petitioners father’s cremated remains and interment cremated remains of both parents elsewhere. Both Blagdon and Alsager cited. [Back] [Top]

Re South Stoneham Cemetery [2018] ECC Win 2* Whilst accepting that there had been an administrative mistake by the burial authority, the Chancellor decided not to grant a faculty, because of “the possibility of real consequences” for family of person buried in grave and alternative possibilities. [Back] [Top]

Re Cheshunt Cemetery (No. 1) [2018] ECC StA 1 Deputy Chancellor granted a faculty for exhumation and reinterment in an unconsecrated part of another cemetery. [Back] [Top]

Re Cheshunt Cemetery (No. 2) [2018] ECC StA 2* Tthe Deputy Chancellor could find no special circumstances to justify the grant of a faculty to have ashes exhumed, so that petitioners could keep the ashes with them wherever they moved. [Back] [Top] See Appeal below.

Re Cheshunt Cemetery (No.2) [2018] EACC 4 The Dean of Arches granted leave to appeal against the decision of the Deputy Chancellor in Re Cheshunt Cemetery (No. 2) [2018] ECC StA 2 supra not to allow the exhumation of the cremated remains of the petitioners’ baby son. [Re Cheshunt Cemetery (No.2) [2018] EACC 4] [Back] [Top]

Re Hither Green Cemetery [2018] ECC Swk 3 Permission granted for exhumation of remains, for subsequent cremation and retention at petitioner’s home. Funeral had involved humanist ceremony, but remains had been buried in a consecrated part of the cemetery. [Re Hither Green Cemetery [2018] ECC Swk 3] [Back] [Top]

Other

Re St. Wilfrid Standish [2018] ECC Bla 2* Petition refused for exhumation of remains of petitioner’s father from grave immediately next to that of his second wife and reinterment in the grave of the deceased’s first wife, which also contained the remains of the deceased’s parents. [Back] [Top]

Re Lambeth Cemetery [2003] Charles George Ch. (Southwark) Faculty granted on the basis that at the time of burial there had been a mistake in the family’s understanding of the nature of, and the consequences of, interment in consecrated ground, which had not been explained to them. [Back] [Top]

Re St. Thomas Worting [2018] ECC Win 4 “Differences with the vicar” not sufficiently exceptional to justify the grant of a faculty for exhumation. [Re St. Thomas Worting [2018] ECC Win 4] [Back] [Top]

Re All Saints Allesley (1) [2018] ECC Cov 7* The petitioner wished to have his father’s cremated remains exhumed from Allesley churchyard and reinterred in the churchyard of Willoughton, where the petitioner now lived and where his mother’s cremated remains had been interred. Applying Re Blagdon Cemetery [2002] Fam 299, there were insufficient exceptional grounds to warrant the grant of a faculty. [Re All Saints Allesley [2018] ECC Cov 7] [Back] [Top]

Re All Saints Allesley (2) [2018] ECC Cov 10* Deputy Chancellor reconsidered Re All Saints Allesley [2018] ECC Cov 7* afresh. However, he refused to grant a faculty to authorise exhumation; changes in their Family life do not amount to the exceptional circumstances that would be required to justify exhumation. [Re All Saints Allesley [2018] ECC Cov 10] [Back] [Top]

[2017 Judgments] [2016 Judgments] [2015 Judgments] [2014 Judgments]


Churchyards and burials

Development of churchyard

Re Grangetown Cemetery [2018] ECC Dur 1 Chancellor determined consecrated pieces of land to be used as gardens (which contained a number of recorded burials, but none within the last 100 years) could not lawfully be sold by the Council, but he was willing to grant a faculty to authorise the granting of licences by the Council for the two pieces of land to be used as gardens. [Back] [Top]

Re Holy Trinity Burial Ground Hull [2018] ECC Yor 4 Faculty granted for part of the burial ground being used for widening of road in Hull at a difficult junction, including the excavation of human remains; [Back] [Top]

Re St. Mary & St. Hugh Harlow [2018] ECC Chd 1 Faculty granted for re-use of the churchyard for burials. Objector to pay the costs of the half-day hearing. [Back] [Top]

Re St. Catherine Ventnor [2018] ECC Por 2 The Chancellor granted faculty for works in the churchyard, subject to conditions: creation of area for cremated remains; creation of garden for social and recreational use; and reconfiguration and resurfacing of parking area. [Back] [Top].

Re St. John the Baptist Hillmorton (2) [2017] ECC Cov 1 The Chancellor granted a faculty for a single collective memorial on which could be recorded up to 120 names of those interred in the area for cremated remains of the churchyard. The Chancellor permitted a large stone of honed granite with three dark granite tablets. He would not normally have permitted such stone for a individual memorial in the churchyard of a sandstone church surrounded by mostly sandstone memorials. But he accepted that sandstone is much less durable than granite. Inscriptions would remain durable for longer on a granite tablet to which inscriptions would be added over a period of many years. Also, the memorial would not be close to other memorials in the churchyard and any adverse effect on the overall appearance of the churchyard would be minimal. [Re St. JtB Hillmorton [2017] ECC Cov 9] [Back] [Top]

Re St. Chad Saddleworth [2018] ECC Man 2 The Chancellor granted a faculty the authorise the introduction of 8-10 sheep into one of the three churchyards of the parish, for the purpose of keeping down the vegetation. [Re St. Chad Saddleworth [2018] ECC Man 2] [Back] [Top]

Re St. Mary Ashford [2018] ECC Can 3 Commissary General granted a faculty allowing the installation of brightly painted dog for 10 days. [Re St. Mary Ashford [2018] ECC Can 3] [Back] [Top]

Churchyard Regulations

Re St. Leonard Birdingbury [2018] ECC Cov 1* Petitioner refused for memorial outwith Churchyard Regulations. Mason did not check that permission had been obtained before erecting the memorial. [Link to judgment] [Back] [Top]

Re St. Bartholomew Areley Kings [2018] ECC Wor 1 Adopting a “common sense” approach to breach of Churchyard Regulations, Chancellor permitted retention of non-compliant memorial. Acknowledged error of stonemason, but excessive delay in response to request for permission to Rector. [Back] [Top]

Re St. James Bulkington [2018] ECC Cov 2 Deputy Chancellor determined that memorial would not be out of place in this particular churchyard, bearing in mind other memorials nearby, and he granted a faculty, subject to conditions. [Link to post] [Back] [Top]

Re St. Mary Offton [2018] ECC SEI 2 The Chancellor considered there were sufficient exceptional circumstances to allow the general prohibition on inscriptions on both sides of a memorial to be relaxed. [Back] [Top]

Re St. James the Less Fradswell [2018] ECC Lic 4 Chancellor permitted memorial which did not comply with the regulations, as large number of other similar examples in churchyard. [Back] [Top]

Re St. Peter & St. Paul Nutfield [2018] ECC Swk 1 Owing to the petitioner’s father’s connection with Wales, the Deputy Chancellor approved use of Welsh word in the inscription. And as regards the mother’s body not being buried in the churchyard, the Deputy Chancellor approved the inscription bearing the mother’s name, provided that the words ‘Margaret buried in Nutfield Cemetery. Gadfan interred at this spot.’ were added to the edge of the stone. [Back] [Top]

Re A Churchyard [2018] ECC Lic 5 The Chancellor decided that there were exceptional circumstances to justify the grant of a faculty, even though the proposals were outside the churchyards regulations; grave previously had kerbs, moved 20 years earlier, and the then incumbent at the time said no problem in reinstating kerbs; also numerous examples close to the grave of kerbs, chipping and vases. Refusal would be unreasonable. [Back] [Top]

Re St. Michael & All Angels Horton [2018] ECC Lic 6* Chancellor refused to grant a faculty to authorise kerbs and gravel to be placed on the grave, although there were some other graves with kerbs in the churchyard; he also refused to allow the scattering of ashes, as being contrary to churchyards regulation and Canon B 38 (4)(a). [Back] [Top]

Re St. Peter & St. Paul Winderton [2018] ECC Cov 4 Chancellor granted permission for unpolished light grey granite memorial on which would be etched an image of an eagle, but to be etched and not in black enamel as sought. [Back] [Top]

Re Holy Trinity Drayton Parslow [2018] ECC Oxf 3* Chancellor refused to grant faculty to add the word ‘Beloved’ to the memorial on his father’s grave before the words ‘Father, Teacher, Linguist’. Petitioner was serving 16 year minimum sentence for murdering his father, whose body had been allowed to decompose then buried under concrete. Given the circumstances, addition inscription would be inappropriate and would be likely to give offence to the local community. [Back] [Top]

Re St. Mary Magdalene Mulbarton [2015] Ruth Arlow Ch. (Norwich) General permission granted for inclusion of modest uncoloured pictures on future memorials within the new churchyard extension. [Back] [Top]

Re St. Mary the Virgin Brook [2015] Philip Waller Ch. (Portsmouth) Althouogh memorial, in the form of a wheeled cross on an open plinth and solid base, was outside churchyards regulations, Chancellor determined that design was both attractive and appropriate for a churchyard setting, and granted a faculty. [Back] [Top]

Re St. Andrew Haughton-le-Skerne [2018] ECC Dur 2* Chancellor not prepared to grant a faculty for proposed memorial, but might be prepared to authorise a compromise proposal, in accordance with further advice from the Diocesan Advisory Committee. [Back] [Top]

In the Matter of Margaret Jane Moore [2018] ECC Bir 2 Faculty granted for memorial on grave of petitioner’s wife, including design of a rose in gold, red and green. However, only gold colouring to be allowed for rose and lettering. [Re Margaret Jane Moore [2018] ECC Bir 2] [Back] [Top]

Re Holy Trinity Arrow [2018] ECC Cov 11 In the particular circumstances of this case, the Chancellor found reasons to justify the grant of a faculty authorising a memorial of light grey Cornish granite, which is not covered by the churchyard regulations. [Re Holy Trinity Arrow [2018] ECC Cov 11] [Back] [Top]

Re St. Saviour Ringley [2018] ECC Man 3* Petition refused to parents of a stillborn baby for heart-shaped blue pearl granite stone memorial with stars etched into the edge of the memorial and a heart etched underneath the proposed inscription. Existence of three unauthorized heart-shaped memorials in the churchyard, did not justify grant of faculty. [Re St. Saviour Ringley [2018] ECC Man 3] [Back] [Top]

Re St. Vedast Tathwell [2018] ECC Lin 4 In the special circumstances of this case, the Chancellor permitted a memorial matching that of widow’s husband in adjacent grave. [Re St. Vedast Tathwell [2018] ECC Lin 4] [Back] [Top]

Trees

Re St. James Nunburnholme [2018] ECC Yor 1 Faculty granted for the felling of a sycamore tree in the churchyard and its replacement it with smaller suitable trees further away from the church building. Although only minor objections were raised, the petitioners were required to pay the additional costs created by this being an opposed petition [Back] [Top]

Memorials

Re St. Jude Hexthorpe [2018] ECC She 2 Chancellor permitted refurbishment of World War memorial with gilded lettering, contrary to the recommendations of the DAC. [Re St. Jude Hexthorpe [2018] ECC She 2] [Back] [Top]

[2017 Judgments] [2016 Judgments] [2015 Judgments] [2014 Judgments]


Organs

Re All Saints Findern [2018] ECC Der 1 Chancellor satisfied in principal that removal of the organ and installation of the kitchen and toilet facilities would benefit the church and the community, subject to conditions.  [Back] [Top]

Re St. Denys Ravensthorpe [2018] ECC Pet 1 Faculty granted for reordering including the construction of a WC and servery, the removal of a pipe organ installed in 1958 and its replacement with a digital organ. [Back] [Top]

Re St. Nicholas Guisborough [2018] ECC Yor 6 Faculty granted for retention ofa Hauptwerk digital organ (belonging to Wakefield Cathedral), which had been introduced into the church under an Archdeacon’s Licence for temporary minor re-ordering. There was an extant faculty removal and disposal of the pipe organ, with the proviso of having a suitable replacement option. [Re St. Nicholas Guisborough [2018] ECC Yor 6] [Back] [Top]

[2017 Judgments] [2015 Judgments] [2014 Judgments]


Fonts

Re Eastern Green St. Andrew [2018] ECC Cov 6 Faculty granted for introduction of new portable solid-oak font, retaining the original font’s bowl and cover, to be placed at west end when not in use. Last resort for disposal of plinth from old font to be burial in churchyard. [Photo] [Back] [Top]

See Re St. Michael & All Angels Maxstoke, above.

Re St. Paul Seaton [2018] ECC Car 1 Chancellor granted a faculty for the replacement of the old font, on condition that the new font should stand in the same position as the old font, except when it needed to be moved for special services and events. [Re St. Paul Seaton [2018] ECC Car 1] [Back] [Top]

[2017 Judgments] [2016 Judgments] [2015 Judgments]


Bells

  • See Re St. Nicholas Codsall and Re All Saints Rothbury. 

Environmental Permits

From December 2018, applications for environmental permits are included under the “Churchyard Development” heading, since the majority relate to the disposal of water within a churchyard. 

[2017 judgments]


CDM Tribunals

[2017 judgments]


Links to other posts

Recent summaries of specific issues that have been considered in the consistory courts include:

Reordering, extensions & other building works

Audio Visual Equipment

Telecommunications

Exhumation

Churchyards

Organs

Bells

General/Miscellaneous

CDM


Links to the Ecclesiastical Law Association web site

At the end of 2018, the ELA web site was rebuilt using a more up-to-date framework; however, one consequence was that it is no longer practicable for us to include direct links to the site; from September 2018, therefore, the L&RUK site has held copies of all new judgments reviewed; for cases prior to this date, these can be accessed directly from the ELA web site.

Navigation

  • Clicking on “Top” will return the view to the groups in the main menu, above;
  • Clicking on “Back” will return the view to the sub-headings within each of these groups.
  • Clicking on the neutral citation in the title will link to the L&RUK summary of the case.
  • “Link to post” is used where there is a stand-alone post on the general issues raised in the judgment.

Citation of judgments

As from 1 January 2016, judgments in the ecclesiastical courts have been allocated a neutral citation number under the scheme described in Practice Note No 1 of 2015 and Practice Note No 1 of 2016. In addition, it was necessary to assign a neutral citation for the Diocese of Sodor and Man, here. The Diocese was deliberately excluded from the list of neutral citations in the earlier Practice Directions on citation because it is not part of England.

Note

  • Reviews of 2018 judgments received after the publication of this post will be included with those for 2019. 
  • The photographs used in this post do not necessarily relate to the cases discussed.

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Cite this article as: David Pocklington, "Ecclesiastical court judgments – 2018" in Law & Religion UK, 4 January 2019, https://lawandreligionuk.com/2019/01/04/ecclesiastical-court-judgments-2018/

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