Display:

In July 2013 the Chancellor granted of a faculty authorising works in respect of the stonework, stained glass, and wall paintings at the church. The Church Buildings Council had advised against the proposed work to the stained glass without a detailed conservation report. The faculty granted in July 2013 was subject to a condition that no work should be carried out to the stained glass unless and until a report was first prepared and approved by the Chancellor. A report had now been produced, in which the options given were to replace the broken pieces of glass with similar modern glass, or to insert strapping to support the original damaged glass. The Chancellor decided that the former option was appropriate. The window concerned was one of four matching windows, and new pieces of glass would retain an appearance similar to the other windows, whereas strapping would detract from the appearance of the window, especially as it was part of a set.

The Petitioners sought a faculty for repairs to the stone work,together with repairs to the stained glass and works of conservation in relation to the wall paintings. The Diocesan Advisory Committee recommended the proposals and the Victorian Society had no objection. The Church Buildings Council advised against the proposed work to the stained glass without a detailed conservation report. The Chancellor granted a faculty subject to a condition that no work should be carried out to the stained glass (in a window damaged by missiles from outside) unless and until a report was first prepared and approved by the Chancellor.

The Chancellor granted a faculty for a major reordering of the church, with the exception of a proposal to cover the whole of the floor with carpet, because he considered that, if the church was carpeted, "the change in the present character and nature of the church would be too great ".
(Note: This judgment also deals with a separate petition which included a proposal for carpeting, and is therefore separately listed as Re St. John the Divine Southbourne [1985] Quentin Edwards Ch. (Chichester).)

The Chancellor granted a faculty for the exhumation of the mortal remains of the baby son of one of the petitioners and reinterment in Ireland. The baby had lived less than three months. The family had lived in Ireland for 20 years and had a double grave plot reserved in their local churchyard, which could accommodate six burials. The father was suffering from terminal cancer and wished to be buried with his child in the family plot. For this and other reasons, the Chancellor found that there were exceptional circumstances to justify the grant of a faculty.

Mr. Gordon Mills died in 1983 and was buried in the churchyard at Welcombe. A memorial had been erected over his grave, leaving room for a further inscription. Some years before, his marriage had broken down, and following separation from his wife had lived with Mrs. Margaret Walker. Following Mrs. Walker's death in 2000, one of Mr. Mills's daughters and a granddaughter applied for permission to add the following inscription to the memorial: "Also his beloved Margaret (Walker) much loved Mum and Nan 31-12-1915 - 24-2-2000". Four of Mr. Mills's children objected to the inscription. The Chancellor decided that "Mum and Nan" might be misleading, as Mrs. Walker was not the natural mother and grandmother to all Mr. Mills's children and grandchildren. He also thought "loved" and "beloved" was repetitious. He therefore granted a faculty authorising: "Also his beloved companion Margaret Walker 31st December 1915 - 24th February 2000".

The PCC wished to replace lead stolen from the church porch roof with plain tiles. The DAC objected and felt that terne-coated stainless steel was preferable, as the porch had always had a metal roof. English Heritage were agreeable to either steel or tiles. After consideration of the decision in St Alkmund Duffield, the Chancellor determined that it would not be appropriate to put tiles on a roof which had historically had a metal roof covering, but terne-coated stainless steel would be an acceptable alternative to lead: " ... if the proposal for plain tiles was granted then this would result in harm to the significance of the church as a building of special architectural or historic interest.  I am also satisfied that the level of harm done would far outweigh any benefit that could be obtained from the use of tiles over the use of [terne-coated steel]".

Faculty Petition for various works to a redundant chapel vested in the Churches Conservation Trust and the adjoining chapelyard, including improved access within the chapelyard and into the chapel, various rainwater and foul water drainage improvements, the creation of a rubbish and recycling area, and the removal of the modern metal security gates from the entrance to the south porch and their replacement with the Victorian gates which previously hung there. There was one objector, whose objection was in respect of the replacement of the porch gates. Finding by the Chancellor that the gates, being part of the redundant chapel, were not within the Faculty Jurisdiction (though the chapelyard still was). Faculty granted for all the works.

A Faculty had been granted in 2013 for the felling of some trees in the churchyard. On the date when the contractors started work, an objection to the work was made on site, as a result of which the work was suspended. The faculty subsequently lapsed. A new petition was presented and the same objector wished to become a party opponent. The Chancellor issued directions dealing with, inter alia, (a) an allegation by the objector that the Chancellor should recuse himself; (b) an application by one of the petitioner's for an extension of time in order to respond to the objector's particulars of objection; and (c) the need for an arboricultural report. The Chancellor also directed that the Ancient Yew Group should be invited to comment on the proposals.

The petitioner's mother died in a motor accident in 2000. The petitioner's father had been in such a state of shock that he had left it to a family friend to arrange the funeral. Notwithstanding that the father and his three daughters were all atheists, the family friend arranged for burial in the consecrated churchyard at Charlwood. Each member of the family had never been happy with this and had only recently found it possible to discuss the matter together. They now wished the mother's body to be exhumed and cremated, and the ashes scattered elsewhere. The Deputy Chancellor considered the guiding principles laid down in Re Blagdon Cemetery [2002] Fam 299 and concluded that this was an exceptional case where exhumation should be allowed: " ... I am persuaded that there was a fundamental mistake of intention in this case ... For a family of conscientious atheists, Christian burial was not the right choice. The daughters have tried very hard to honour and make sense of their mother’s memory through the medium of her grave, but they reached a point whereby the thing which should provide some solace was doing the opposite."

The petitioner (a churchwarden) wished to carry out repairs to three box tombs. There was one objector (who did not become a party opponent), who raised a number of issues, but the Chancellor did not regard the objections as grounds for refusing a faculty. A faculty was granted, subject to Historic England not making any representations within 28 days. If any representation were to be made, the matter was to be referred back to the Chancellor for further directions.