Church Buildings Officer

This job has now expired
Hybrid– remote working or Church House, Westminster
Employee
£34,851 p.a. rising to £42,246 p.a. after probation

Our aim is for everyone in the National Church Institutions (NCIs) to feel that they belong, and are valued for who they are and what they contribute. Together, our people contribute in different ways towards our common purpose, whichever NCI they work in and whatever their background.

The Cathedral and Church Buildings Division celebrates and supports the maintenance and sustainable development of the Church of England’s 42 cathedrals and 16,000 church buildings. Through advice, campaigning and fundraising, it provides strategic support to those responsible for church buildings at a local level.

The Church Buildings Council is a statutory body responsible for advising Chancellors, dioceses and parishes on faculty applications and on the care, conservation and development of the Church of England’s 16,000 church buildings.

This temporary one year contract is for a caseworker in the Church Buildings Team for casework referred for advice to the Church Buildings Council. The officer will be responsible for delivery of casework, site visits, production of reports summarising the history and significance of church buildings and assessing the impact of proposed changes. Following the advice of the Council they will return recommendations and offer advice. The post holder will also provide advice on a delegated basis when appropriate. The post holder will be the primary point of contact with DACs on matters related to casework.

The post holder will provide general guidance and advice at diocesan and local level. As part of the ChurchCare team they will also work on projects to raise national standards, training and campaigning.

The main responsibilities for this role are:

Provide consistent, practical and timely advice:

  • Prepare reports on the archaeological, art historical, ecological and architectural value of churches and assess the impact of proposed changes on the significance on the building, taking into account the role of the church as a centre of worship and mission.
  • Provide written advice, following the advice of the Council where appropriate, in response to proposals for church buildings.
  • Make recommendations and suggestions, following the advice of the Council where appropriate, about wider use of the building in addition to worship.
  • Provide administrative support for meetings of the Statutory Advisory Committee.
  • As part of a team assist with the ongoing process of simplification of casework processes and the development of a national church heritage database.

Promote the development of church buildings

  • Support the development of the ChurchCare website to promote the work of the Division.
  • To speak in public on behalf of the division at training events and conferences.

Support policy and campaigning initiatives

  • To identify issues of general concern and participate in ongoing initiatives such as supporting struggling churches.
  • Support work on developing format of church buildings reports.

Assist the director:

  • Undertake such duties as the Head of Division considers appropriate.

The ideal candidate must have:

Skills/Aptitudes

  • Able to take responsibility for their work, and guide members of the Church Buildings Team in their casework responsibilities
  • An ability to think clearly about administrative procedures and how to implement them in a straightforward way, without losing sight of the values which the procedures are there to serve.
  • An ability to write accurately, and speak clearly and to the point to persuade a wide range of audiences.
  • An able public speaker who will be an effective ambassador for the work of the Council
  • A good practical knowledge of the use of information technology in the working environment.

Knowledge/Experience

  • Proven experience in casework on church or other historic buildings
  • Sympathetic understanding of the purposes of church buildings as centres of Christian worship and mission.
  • Knowledge/experience of the use of church buildings and understanding of their architectural and archaeological development.
  • Knowledge/experience of the broad fields of conservation or heritage management in England including planning legislation and the operation of the systems.
  • Knowledge and interest in the environmental sustainability of church buildings and climate change issues.
  • Knowledge and interest in extended use of church buildings.

Personal Attributes

  • A pro-active team member, able to communicate and work creatively with colleagues.
  • A client forward approach to all who seek our advice, from Bishops and Government Ministers to parish church representatives.
  • Flexibility and adaptability in the face of changing requirements.

Circumstances

  • The normal place of work is Church House, Westminster. In addition, the post-holder will be required to travel regularly (by public transport or by car and so have their own driving licence) to church buildings and conference venues around the country, with some overnight stays as necessary – appropriate travel and accommodation expenses will be paid.

Education

  • A relevant degree or professional qualification in a field relevant to the Church Buildings Council’s activities. Extensive workplace experience may be accepted in lieu of a formal qualification.

Desirable

Education

  • Qualifications or equivalent in both (i) history of art/architecture or archaeology and also (ii) conservation or heritage management would be advantageous.

Knowledge/Experience

  • Knowledge/experience of the challenges experienced by the Church of England in maintaining its historic buildings in change and often difficult circumstances.
  • Previous experience in an organisation concerned with the conservation of historic buildings and their planned development.
  • Experience of informal management of people and how to use personal influence to ensure good outcomes within a matrix management setup.

We in the National Church Institutions support the mission and ministries of the Church all over England. We work with parishes, dioceses (regional offices), schools, other ministries and our partners at a national and international level.

Excellence, Respect, Integrity

We follow these three values in everything we do, whether we are of Christian faith, another faith or no faith. To learn more about working for National Church Institutions and our benefits, please click here

As a Disability Confident Leader, we actively look to attract, recruit and retain those of you who are disabled.

As a member of the Armed Forces Covenant, we welcome applications from those of you who have served in our Armed Forces and their families.

We are committed to being an equal opportunities employer and to ensuring that everyone, job applicants, customers and other people with whom we deal, are treated fairly and not subject to discrimination. We will do whatever is necessary to provide genuine equality of opportunity. We continuously review our policies and processes to support our aim to create a workforce as diverse as the nation the Church of England serves.