DAC and adviser site visits

The Lichfield Diocesan Advisory Committee (DAC) visits churches and churchyards so that it can gain a better understanding of works being proposed by a PCC. These visits also give PCC members an opportunity to explain their proposal and to ensure that the views of the parish are well represented.

A DAC site visit may be requested by the PCC at an early stage in the development of its proposal, as part of seeking informal (pre-application) advice. The DAC may otherwise suggest a visit, following consideration of a faculty proposal at a DAC meeting, and where the members then wish to consider the scheme on site.

  • Before requesting a DAC site visit, please see the diocesan guidance on the main changes to the faculty application process and timings from 1st July 2022

Further details on project planning can be found in the 'Making Changes to Your Building and Churchyard' section of the Church of England website.

Who will attend?

For smaller proposals, such as changes to heating/lighting systems, or relocation/adaptation of church furnishings or fittings, the relevant DAC adviser will visit. These visits generally constitute adviser site visits, made by an individual, as distinct from DAC site visits, made as a group. Adviser site visits operate on a rolling programme, by appointment through the DAC Office (not through the adviser direct).

An adviser site visit request and any accompanying supporting documents (e.g. estimates/quotes) should be:

For larger schemes, such as an extension to the church or the introduction of toilet and refreshment facilities, a broader range of DAC members (and advisers) will attend. These will include the relevant Archdeacon (who will chair the visit), a DAC architect, and various other DAC members, including those nominated by Historic England, the National Amenity Societies, or the Local Government Association.

When will the DAC site visit occur?

The date and time of the DAC site visit will be co-ordinated by the Assistant DAC Secretary (see below), who will liaise with various DAC and PCC attendees prior to the visit.

Upon receiving a request from the PCC or DAC, the Assistant DAC Secretary will offer the next available date, but please note that other visits may already have been booked on specific dates, as visits are arranged on a first come, first served basis. The Assistant DAC Secretary will confirm timings with individual parishes prior to the visit.

As a guide, DAC site visits commence at 10 am or 2 pm. Visits generally last between 1 and 1.5 hours, and should end by 4 pm.

What information should the parish provide?

In order that the DAC has sufficient briefing material to ensure that the visit is most effective, the following information will be required in advance of a DAC site visit:

  1. Statements of Significance and Needs (for listed church buildings)
  2. Outline or sketch proposals, including a plan showing the location of the proposed works
  3. An options appraisal, i.e. of locations considered within the church (if available)
  4. A copy of a PCC or Standing Committee minute in support of the proposed project

For listed church buildings, please consult the Church of England guidance on Statements of Significance and Needs.

The visit request and accompanying supporting documents should be:

What will happen at the DAC site visit?

At the visit the PCC and its architect, if one has been appointed by this stage (usually the quinquennial inspector), will be asked to explain why the present arrangements are not adequate, to outline their initial proposals, and to explain the thinking behind their ideas.

The DAC visitors will then need to look around the building at the areas under consideration, ask questions, and may offer verbal suggestions to the PCC for further consideration. It may be that possible options/solutions are discussed at the visit, but anything said by the DAC visitors on site should not be taken as the definitive view of the DAC – this will be sent in the form of a written report (see below).

Following the visit

The DAC officer in attendance at the visit will compile a written site visit report. This will need to be approved by the whole DAC at a subsequent DAC meeting following the visit. If the visit falls after the agenda closing date of the next DAC meeting, it may not be possible to consider the report until the meeting following. Therefore, there may be some delay before it can be sent to the PCC. The PCC can then use the report as guidance in the development of its faculty application.

Please note that the DAC-approved site visit report does not give permission for the PCC's proposals. It offers advice which the parish should use to inform and develop its faculty application to the Diocesan Chancellor. It is the Chancellor, rather than the DAC, who grants faculty permission.

Getting help...

If you wish to request a DAC or adviser site visit, please contact:

Helen Cook, Assistant DAC Secretary
01543 622569 helen.cook@lichfield.anglican.org

Page last updated: Friday 1st July 2022 6:05 PM
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