Miscellaneous

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This was an appeal from a decision of the Chancellor of the Diocese of Peterborough, who had refused to grant a faculty for the sale of certain items of church silver. The reason for the proposed sale of the "redundant" silver had been to start a fund to meet the cost of building an extension to the church. The Court of Arches dismissed the appeal for the reasons given by the Chancellor in his judgment: the application to sell the silver was premature; there was no immediate financial crisis; planning permission had not yet been obtained (in fact planning permission had been refused two years earlier and no appeal had been made against the decision); there had not yet been any appeal for funds, and so one could not argue that the proceeds of a sale of the silver were vital to the completion of the project.

The Incumbent and Churchwardens sought permission to sell a Georgian silver flagon and matching alms dish dated 1774, a silver chalice and paten dated 1570 and the surviving part of an illuminated medieval missal. The Council for the Care of Churches suggested that the missal should be deposited in the County Records Office. This was agreed, and a faculty was granted in respect of that item. The silver had not been used for over 20 years and the proposed sale was with a view to starting a fund to cover the cost of an extension to the church, the cost of which would be in th region of £300,000. The Chancellor refused to grant a faculty for the sale. Church silver should only be sold as a last resort. The application to sell the silver was premature. There was no immediate financial crisis. Planning permission had not yet been obtained. In fact planning permission had been refused two years earlier and no appeal had been made against the decision. There had not yet been any appeal for funds, and so one could not argue that the proceeds of a sale of the silver were vital to the completion of the project.

Faculty granted for the sale to the National Maritime Museum of two flags taken from the Battle of Trafalgar, one a Union Flag from HMS Minotaur, the other an Austrian ensign believed to have been taken from the Spanish ship Neptuno.

Faculty granted for votive candle stand. Judgment contains a discussion as to the legality of the use of votive candles in church.

In spite of reservations by a few parishioners, the Chancellor approved the acceptance of a gift of a silver chalice and paten in memory of a former regular worshipper at the church, the late Mrs. Mary Rowe, the chalice to be inscribed on the base: "In memory of Mary Rowe 1938-2001".

The Chancellor, for two reasons, dismissed an application by a private individual for an injunction to stop the Dean & Chapter of York Minster preventing the ringing of the Minster bells. Firstly, the Chancellor had no jurisdiction over the cathedral church of the diocese; and secondly, "the injunctive powers given to Chancellors is in relation to unlawful activity in relation to the church or the churchyard, but only such activity the nature of which would require a faculty to be granted for it to be done lawfully. The use or non-use of the church, the conduct of services in the church and the ringing or non-ringing of bells would not fall within the jurisdiction of the consistory court in a parish church."