Quinquennial Inspections (QI)
The Ecclesiastical Jurisdiction and Care of Churches Measure 2018 requires that the fabric of all churches is inspected by a suitable building professional (usually an architect or surveyor) every five years. This professional, known as a Quinquennial Inspector, is appointed by the Parochial Church Council (PCC) but must be subject to advice by the Diocesan Advisory Committee (DAC).
The PCC pays the fee for the inspection, the level of which is set by the Diocese each year. For inspections carried out in 2021, the fee is £1075 + VAT.
In addition, PCCs will need to discuss with their Quinquennial Inspector what ‘extras’ may be payable, such as for travelling expenses, more in-depth surveys of particular areas of the building, and providing equipment if access is required (for example, builder’s ladders).
Parishes may take advantage of a Diocesan scheme to spread the payment over five years (contact the Parish Finance Officer at Trinity House: see contact details below).
A report of the inspection is produced for the PCC, the Archdeacon and the DAC. Whilst the QI is not an in-depth inspection, it will identify work required and indicate the urgency of that work.
Following receipt of the QI report, the PCC will need to prioritise the work required. It must be noted that the report is not a specification of work. The DAC recommends that all works arising from the QI report, except those which are small and straightforward jobs, should involve the Inspector and/or other professionals, and may need to be the subject of a full specification prepared by the Inspector.
Even where works are recommendations in the QI report, a faculty or other permission may be required before works can start.
For queries and further information relating to Quinquennial Inspections, please contact the Church Buildings Officer, Duncan Gregory (020 7939 9466), at Trinity House.
In addition to the quinquennial inspection of the fabric, a number of other periodic inspections should also take place, such as:
- electrical installations
- portable electrical appliances
- fire extinguishers
- lightning protection
- access audit
- fire risk assessment.
In order to help you to act upon any maintenance matters which arise, the National Churches Trust has set up a website called MaintenanceBooker.
Through this service, churches can get quotes and book services provided by accredited contractors including: gutter maintenance, lightning conductor inspections, tree surgery and surveys, high level access and maintenance, and asbestos surveys and removal. We hope you will find this useful.