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Record-keeping

by Michael Ford last modified 08 Dec, 2015 12:25 PM

Over the years, laws have required the documents (or copies of them) that are created for church activities to be deposited in the Diocesan Registry. As a result, the Registry holds some church deeds (especially for churches built in Victorian times and more recently), and we can sometimes answer questions about boundaries etc.

It is usually helpful if you can send us a plan, even if it is only a sketch plan, to help us to identify the land in question.  Property owned by the Benefice in the name of the Incumbent – such as the church itself and the churchyard, and the benefice house – is now in the process of being registered at the Land Registry, and this process will mean that for those parts of the property the Registry will have a clear record of what is owned. Other church property is also being registered, and the Registry will often be able to help with identifying where records are kept.

In proper cases the Registry can guide parishes in property matters, and it is worth asking, in case the answer is straightforward when considered by an ecclesiastical lawyer. Lawyers outside the Church can be misled in their consideration of church property unless they have some experience of the field, and costs can be needlessly incurred sometimes.

Other records include some of the history of what has been done under faculty to the buildings over the years, of the people who are Patrons of the living, of previous clergy and of the consecration of the burial grounds of the church. Unfortunately the Registry has almost no records at all of the actual burials, and it is rarely of any value to enquirers after family history details.

Anyone thinking the Registry might hold records that would assist in their work within the church can find out very easily whether they are right by calling and speaking to one of the staff.

Contacting the Registry
registry@salisbury.anglican.org 
01722 432390
Fax: 01722 411566

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