Parochial Church Councils (Powers) Measure, 1956

JurisdictionUK Non-devolved
Citationmeasure 1956 No. 3


Parochial Church Councils (Powers) Measure, 1956

(4 & 5 Eliz. 2.)

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

To consolidate with amendments certain enactments relating to parochial church councils and parochial charities.

S-1 Definitions.

1 Definitions.

In this Measure—

‘Council’ means a parochial church council;

‘Diocesan Authority’ means the Diocesan Board of Finance or any existing or future body appointed by the Diocesan Conference to act as trustees of diocesan trust property;

‘Minister’ and ‘Parish’ have the meanings respectively assigned to them in the Rules for the Representation of the Laity;

‘Relevant date’ means the first day of July, 1921.

S-2 General functions of Council.

2 General functions of Council.

It shall be the primary duty of the council in every parish to co-operate with the minister in the initiation conduct and development of church work both within the parish and outside.

S-3 Council to be a body corporate.

3 Council to be a body corporate.

Every council shall be a body corporate by the name of the parochial church council of the parish for which it is appointed and shall have perpetual succession. Any act of the council may be signified by an instrument executed pursuant to a resolution of the council and under the hands or if an instrument under seal is required under the hands and seals of the chairman presiding and two other members of the council present at the meeting at which such resolution is passed.

S-4 Powers vested in council as successor to certain other bodies.

4 Powers vested in council as successor to certain other bodies.

(1) Subject to the provisions of any Act or Measure passed after the relevant date and to anything lawfully done under such provisions, the council of every parish shall have—

(i) The like powers duties and liabilities as, immediately before the relevant date, the vestry of such parish had with respect to the affairs of the church except as regards the election of churchwardens and sidesmen and as regards the administration of ecclesiastical charities but including the power of presentation to the benefice of such parish if the right to present thereto was vested in or in trust for the parishioners and the power of making any voluntary church rate.

(ii) The like powers duties and liabilities as, immediately before the relevant date, the churchwardens of such parish had with respect to—

a ) The financial affairs of the church including the collection and administration of all moneys raised for church purposes and the keeping of accounts in relation to such affairs and moneys
b ) The care maintenance preservation and insurance of the fabric of the church and the goods and ornaments thereof
c ) The care and maintenance of any churchyard (open or closed), and the power of giving a certificate under the provisions of section eighteen of the Burial Act, 1855, with the like powers as, immediately before the relevant date, were possessed by the churchwardens to recover the cost of maintaining a closed churchyard

Provided that nothing herein contained shall affect the property of the churchwardens in the goods and ornaments of the church or their powers duties and liabilities with respect to visitations.

(iii) The like powers duties and liabilities as, immediately before the relevant date, were possessed by the church trustees (if any) for the parish appointed under the Compulsory Church Rate Abolition Act, 1868.

(2) All enactments in any Act whether general or local or personal relating to any powers duties or liabilities transferred to the council from the vestry churchwardens or church trustees as the case may be shall subject to the provisions of this Measure and so far as circumstances admit be construed as if any reference therein to the vestry or the churchwardens or church trustees referred to the council to which such powers duties or liabilities have been transferred and the said enactments shall be construed with such modifications as may be necessary for carrying this Measure into effect.

(3) Where any property is applicable to purposes connected with any such powers duties or liabilities as aforesaid, any deed or instrument which could be or could have been made or executed in relation to such property by a vestry, or by church-wardens or church trustees, may be made or executed by the council of the parish concerned.

(4) This Measure shall not affect any enactment in any private or local Act of Parliament under the authority of which church rates may be made or levied in lieu of or in consideration of the extinguishment or of the appropriation to any other purpose of any tithes customary payments or other property or charge upon property which tithes payments property or charge previously to the passing of such Act had been appropriated by law to ecclesiastical purposes or in consideration of the abolition of tithes in any place or upon any contract made or for good or valuable consideration given and every such enactment shall continue in force in the same manner as if this Measure had not been passed.

For the purposes of this subsection ‘ecclesiastical purposes’ shall mean the building rebuilding enlargement and repair of any church and any purpose to which by common or ecclesiastical law a church rate is applicable or any of such purposes.

S-5 Holding of property for ecclesiastical purposes: educational schemes.

5 Holding of property for ecclesiastical purposes: educational schemes.

(1) Subject to the provisions of this Measure, the council of every parish shall have power to acquire (whether by way of gift or otherwise) any property real or personal—

( a ) For any ecclesiastical purpose affecting the parish or any part thereof;

( b ) For any purpose in connection with schemes (hereinafter called ‘educational schemes’) for providing facilities for the spiritual moral and physical training of persons residing in or near the parish.

(2) Subject to the provisions of this Measure and of the general law and to the provisions of any trusts affecting any such property, the council shall have power to manage, administer and dispose of any property acquired under this section.

(3) A council shall have power, in connection with any educational scheme, to constitute or participate in the constitution of a body of managers or trustees or a managing committee consisting either wholly or partly of persons...

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