Church Commissioners Measure, 1947

JurisdictionUK Non-devolved
Citationmeasure 1947 No. 2


Church Commissioners Measure, 1947

(10 & 11 Geo. 6.)

A MEASURE passed by the National Assembly of the Church of England.

To promote the more efficient and economical administration of the resources of the Church of England by uniting the Corporation of the Governors of the Bounty of Queen Anne for the augmentation of the maintenance of the poor clergy, founded by charter under the Great Seal in the year 1704, and the Ecclesiastical Commissioners for England originally established in the year 1836 by the statute 6 and 7 William the Fourth, chapter 77.

[2nd April 1947]

S-1 Establishment of the Church Commissioners.

1 Establishment of the Church Commissioners.

(1) For the purpose of uniting Queen Anne's Bounty with the Ecclesiastical Commissioners there shall be established, by the name of the Church Commissioners for England, a body corporate having perpetual succession and a common seal and power to acquire and hold land without licence in mortmain.

(2) The said body (hereafter in this Measure referred to as ‘the Commissioners’) shall be constituted in accordance with the provisions of the First Schedule to this Measure, and may for all purposes be referred to as the ‘Church Commissioners.’

S-2 Transfer of functions and property.

2 Transfer of functions and property.

On the appointed day Queen Anne's Bounty and the Ecclesiastical Commissioners (hereafter in this Measure referred to as ‘the constituent authorities’) shall be dissolved and—

a ) all functions, rights and privileges of either of them shall be transferred to, and become functions, rights and privileges of, the Commissioners
b ) all property vested in either of them shall be transferred to, and shall by virtue of this section and without any conveyance, assignment, transfer or other assurance vest in, the Commissioners: and
c ) all property held in trust for either of them shall be held in trust for the Commissioners

Provided that a vesting of property by virtue of paragraph (b ) of this section shall not affect any previously existing trust or mortgage or other charge affecting the property, or any previously existing lease or tenancy thereof.

S-3 Method of business.

3 Method of business.

The business of the Commissioners, except the exercise of powers which, under this or any other Measure or any enactment, are required to be exercised at a general meeting of the Commissioners, shall be transacted in accordance with the provisions of this Measure by a Board of Governors (hereafter in this Measure referred to as ‘the Board’), the Church Estates Commissioners appointed under the Ecclesiastical Commissioners Act, 1850, and an Estates and Finance Committee.

S-4 General meetings of the Commissioners.

4 General meetings of the Commissioners.

(1) The Archbishop of Canterbury shall be the chairman of the Commissioners and, if at any general meeting thereof he is not present, such member as the members present may elect shall act as chairman.

(2) The Commissioners shall in every financial year hold an annual general meeting for the purpose of—

( a ) considering, and, if thought fit, passing resolutions with respect to, the annual report and accounts of the Commissioners and any other matters which may be brought before the meeting by the Board, or which the chairman, upon a request submitted to the secretary by any member, may have authorised the secretary to include in the notices of business to be considered;

( b ) appointing, in a year when any such appointment falls to be made, persons to serve as members of the Board;

( c ) appointing persons to serve as members of the Estates and Finance Committee; and

( d ) considering and, if thought fit, adopting the recommendations of the Board as to the allocation of such moneys as the Board may report to be available.

(3) The annual general meeting shall be called by the chairman so soon as conveniently may be after the audit of the Commissioners' accounts for the preceding financial year has been completed.

(4) The chairman may call such other general meetings of the Commissioners as he deems necessary and he shall, so soon as reasonably practicable, call a meeting if ten or more members give to the secretary notice in writing that they desire a meeting to be called to consider matters specified in the notice.

(5) Not less than twenty-eight days before any general meeting, notice of the day, hour and place appointed therefor, and not less than ten days before any general meeting notice of the business to be considered thereat, shall be sent by post to every member.

S-5 Constitution and functions of Board of Governors.

5 Constitution and functions of Board of Governors.

(1) The Board shall be constituted in accordance with the provisions of the Second Schedule to this Measure.

(2) The Archbishop of Canterbury shall be the chairman of the Board and, if at any meeting thereof he is not present, such member as the members present may elect shall act as chairman.

(3) Subject to the provisions of this Measure, all the functions and business of the Commissioners shall be exercised and transacted by the Board.

(4) The Board shall have power—

( a ) to refer for consideration and report any matter within their jurisdiction to the Estates and Finance Committee, or to any other committee consisting of Commissioners which the Board may appoint for the purpose;

( b ) to authorise the Estates and Finance Committee, or any other such committee as aforesaid, to do and complete any matter on behalf of the Board;

( c ) to make general rules for the direction and guidance of the Estates and Finance Committee or any committee appointed by the Board, as to the matters and acts to be considered and done by that committee, and as to the general principles upon which that committee shall act in carrying out such functions as may from time to time be delegated to them by the Board.

(5) The like notice of the business to be considered at a meeting of the Board as is given to members of the Board shall be given also to diocesan bishops who are not members thereof.

S-6 Church Estates Commissioners and Estates and Finance Committee.

6 Church Estates Commissioners and Estates and Finance Committee.

(1) The three Church Estates Commissioners appointed from time to time under section one of the Ecclesiastical Commissioners Act, 1850 , shall, together with the persons appointed under the next succeeding subsection constitute a committee, to be known as the Estates and Finance Committee. They shall, subject to the provisions of subsection (3) of this section, be joint Treasurers of the Commissioners and shall be ex officio members of any committee appointed by the Board.

(2) The Commissioners shall in every year at their annual general meeting appoint not less than two or more than four of their number to be additional members of the Estates and Finance Committee, one half at least of the persons so appointed being laymen who are Commissioners otherwise than in right of office.

(3) The Estates and Finance Committee shall have the same functions in relation to the property and business of the Commissioners as the Estates Committee constituted under section seven of the said Act of 1850 had in relation to the property and business of the Ecclesiastical Commissioners immediately before the appointed day, and, accordingly, sections eight and nine of that Act and section two of the Ecclesiastical Commissioners Act, 1866, as set out with consequential adaptations in the Third Schedule to this Measure, shall continue to have effect:

Provided that during a vacancy in the office of one of the Church Estates Commissioners or for any other cause which he may think sufficient, the Archbishop of Canterbury may from time to time appoint one of the additional lay members of the Estates and Finance Committee to act as an additional joint Treasurer during such period as the said Archbishop shall determine, and while such appointment is in force the person so appointed shall be entitled to exercise the powers of a Church Estates Commissioner for any purpose for which the presence or concurrence of two or more Church Estates Commissioners is required by the said Acts.

(4) In addition to any other powers conferred on them by this Measure, but, subject to any general rules made by the Board, the Estates and Finance Committee shall have full and exclusive power to exercise and discharge in the name of the Commissioners all functions of the Commissioners in matters relating to—

( a ) the making, realisation and change of investments; and

( b ) the appointment, terms of service, dismissal and direction of the Commissioners' officers, solicitors and agents and control over the expenses of administration: provided that this paragraph shall not apply in relation to the secretary of the Commissioners.

It shall also be the duty of the Committee to act on behalf of and in the name of the Commissioners in any matter which in their opinion is urgent, but they shall report any such action to the Board at the next meeting thereof.

(5) The receipt of any two of the joint Treasurers, or the receipt of any one of them countersigned by the accountant of the Commissioners, or by some other officer authorised in that behalf by the Estates and Finance Committee, shall be a good and...

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