Property Schemes - Guidance 

Steve Watson

IMPORTANT: Work on a property scheme must never be started without district consent or where required, conservation consent.

What constitutes a "scheme"? 

A "scheme" can be any one of a number of things which will require entering information and details on the Methodist property consent website.
architect-architecture-build-1Building schemes are probably the most common of all and are those that: 

  • Involve structural works such as a new building, an extension, alterations, structural repair or demolitions.
  • Involve any work to a listed building that would affect its internal or external appearance or which would affect the external appearance of a building in a conservation area. Carrying out unauthorised works to a listed building or one in a conservation area not only infringes Methodist standing orders, it is also a statutory offence with possible serious legal repercussions.
  • Involves outside sources of funding eg obtaining any form of grant, raising an interest-bearing loan or the use of certain "capital monies".
NB: Minor things such as redecorating a kitchen or fixing a broken door do not constitute a scheme.

Also considered to be a "scheme" are:

  • The sale, purchase or lease of Methodist Property; churches and chapels, halls, manses or any other Methodist-owned property. The Trustees for Methodist Church Purposes (TMCP) should always be contacted regarding sales, purchases and leases.

 On-line schedules

 The schedules for applying for consent to carry out a scheme are on-line.

When an on-line property consent management "form" is created it is automatically marked as "proposed" by the managing trustees which in the case of a church is the Church Council and in the case of a manse is the Circuit Meeting.

The system then sends an automatic alert to the District Property Secretary ("DPS").

Likewise, when the circuit authorisation date is added to the web page an automatic alert is again sent to the DPS.

In the case of listed buildings and all those in conservation areas the Connexional Conservation Officer in the TMCP office in Manchester is also automatically alerted.

When listed building or conservation area consent is given by the Connexional Conservation Officer and when final consent is given by the district, further automatic alerts are sent to the church, circuit and district. 
There is also the facility in the online consent process to attach documents, drawings and photographs. There is a useful "help" facility on the website.

Also online are the annual returns relating to each property (all churches and chapels - including Local Ecumenical Projects - and manses) which have to be completed each year. The annual schedules cover matters such as trustees, the whereabouts of important legal documents, leases, insurance and safeguarding, lay employees, finance, general administration, planning matters, quinquennial inspections, condition of property and budgets. 
The District Property Officer is Steve Watson who should be contacted for further information.