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£15m fund available for C of E parishes and clergy struggling with energy bills

by Kelly Valencia
Church of England.jpg - Banner image
Church of England

Parishes in the Church of England are now able to access a new grant to help with the cost of living crisis. 

The Church Commissioners have announced a £15m fund to alleviate some of the strain high energy bills has put on churches. 

Some places of worship have seen their energy bills rise by £14,000.

The Energy Costs Grant will also fund additional payments to clergy and lay ministers struggling to cover their household bills, particularly, energy costs. 

John Spence, chair of the Archbishops' Council Finance Committee, said: "The Government has announced welcome support for non-domestic energy users including voluntary sector organisations such as PCCs.

"But in spite of this our churches still face the challenge of significant rises in their energy bills over this winter, and that is why we are announcing the Energy Costs Grant which will be in addition to Government support. 

"We will keep the situation under close review throughout the winter. We hope that this new fund will provide some reassurance to churches and worshipping communities."

The extra targeted help for clergy is in addition of the £3m fund made available earlier this year to help ministers facing hardship because of the cost of living crisis. 

The money will be distributed to dioceses across the country which will then help their local parochial church councils. 

Alan Smith, First Church Estates Commissioner, said: "The £15 million fund will help churches to remain as centres of worship and pastoral care and will also make a key difference in helping churches to continue opening their buildings for vital practical support for their communities over the winter through social action such as food banks.

"The Church Commissioners are glad to be able to work in partnership with the Archbishops' Council and dioceses to support the work of parishes in the communities they serve."

The scheme is being funded by the Church Commissioners from savings in other categories of expenditure.

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