Friday, 18 October 2013

Gorleston Chancel Repair Liability (Norfolk)

I have recently come across this story here it is a little puzzling or even  significantly incorrect because it talks about a 'certificate of exception' and that concept does not exist in any Chancel Repair law I have come across. The only way to remove the liability is to compound it under the Ecclesiastical Dilapidations Measure 1923 and I suspect the only way to do this correctly would be if all the householders did it together which could work out at about £50 per householder and this process is carried out by the Diocese by consulation with the PCC with any money going into a special fund.

Beware the Certificate of Exemption

If I was a householder I would not touch a certificate of exemption with a barge pole. Indeed if such a thing existed, it might increase the liability of the other householders but more likely it is not worth the paper it is written on and I would insist on a proper compounding process.

Basis of the liability 

 The liability would appear to be personal and several under an enclosure act of  1809 and this covered the three parishes of Corton Hopton and Gorleston and there should be liable land in at least one of the other parishes.


On the 19th October I got my chancel acts confused Greg


  1. Anyone affected by the chancel repair liability scandal MUST contact their local MP and ask him/her to push for immediate and full implementation of the recommendations of the definitive Law Commission report on the problem (Law Comm. 152).

    The judgement on the case of Aston Cantlow PCC v Wallbank (2001) provides information on the legal issues which are essential knowledge for those affected and their solicitors.

    It's time to end this medieval madness. It causes too much trouble for innocent people. Only new legislation, as recommended by the Law Commission, can achieve that.

    A coordinated national campaign is needed to fight against the unacceptable legal and moral situation. Keep a list of press coverage so victims in different parishes can find each other join together. I'll do whatever I can to help those affected. Here in Braughing, Hertfordshire, we are also affected. Find me on Twitter: @timacheson

  2. Dear Tim. I agree with you that only an act of parliament can resolve Chancel repair Liability completely. There is a key difference between now and 1985 in the fact that the Human rights Law now protects the assets of everyone and for a government to take an asset (chancel repair liability)would mean they would have to compensate the churches involved. The problem of chancel repair liability was discussed in parliament about 18 months ago and 4 MP's turned up..