Working together


Working together with other churches and volunteers, can help you to plan, manage and carry out regular maintenance tasks. Whether you are part of a formal maintenance scheme or simply come together with other local churches, you can share skills, resources and costs.

Maintenance schemes

There are several formal maintenance schemes around the country, including the National Churches Trust's service MaintenanceBooker, which is currently available throughout England and Wales. 

Maintenance schemes have three main advantages for congregations:

  • a reliable and competent contractor is pre-selected for them
  • an appropriate specification for the work is provided
  • operating on a large scale with a small number of contractors reduces costs

According to Historic England:

"To make a scheme viable in the long-term the pricing structure needs to make the work affordable and attractive to congregations, but also profitable for the contractor. In order to achieve this, it appears to be necessary either to have subsidy of some sort – at least initially – or to have a scheme that is large enough to generate significant economies of scale." 

Maintenance Co-operatives Project

The SPAB's Maintenance Co-operatives Project (MCP) was founded in 2013 and funded by the Heritage Lottery Fund. The co-operatives were run in collaboration with the National Churches Trust and other sector partners and provided free-of-charge, practical support to the dedicated staff and volunteers who take care of some of our most treasured and distinctive built heritage. Working in five regions across England and delivering a further five 'Co-op Minis' the Maintenance Co-operatives Project project built on the success of Faith in Maintenance and assisted places of worship not only with training but also with practical support on gathering volunteers, carrying out baseline building surveys and turning all that knowledge into maintenance plans and practical working parties. 

Society for the Protection of Ancient Buildings: Maintenance Co-operatives Project

The Pilgrim Trust and Maintenance Awards

We work with the Pilgrim Trust to provide grants to support churches with their maintenance needs. To find out more, please refer to our Foundation grant programme.

The Pilgrim Trust also works with us so that we can run an awards event for churches to celebrate their maintenance achievements. Please follow the links to find out more about the winners of events held in 2019 and 2020.