£1.4m invested in improving 210-strong portfolio
Continuing to improve the quality of our vicarages was a priority for the property team in 2015. Having purchased a new vicarage in West Byfleet in 2014, the old vicarage was sold in 2015. New vicarages were purchased in Haslemere and Albury, selling the old vicarage in Haslemere – and the building of a new vicarage in Compton began.
The diocese also purchased a new vicarage in Busbridge to enable the PCC to purchase the old vicarage and build a new Church Centre on that site. This involved drawing down £1m in temporary bank loan funding. The cost of all this is being borne by Busbridge PCC, but represents a successful partnership between the PCC and diocese – with the diocese’s funding on more favourable terms than could have been achieved by the PCC operating on its own.
The property team processed 22 tenancy agreements and vacancies of properties on the open market as well as monitoring long term market rentals, while also managing 41 significant refurbishments to parsonages during vacancies.
The team also managed the maintenance of the rest of the 210-strong property portfolio, including the legal requirement of annual gas safety inspection and certification.
In addition, the property team managed the use of non-housing estate, like some churches surrounding glebe fields and woodland, which includes keeping as much rented to farmers, or simply maintaining woodland.
The property team also managed three closed school properties during 2015, with the intention of either selling or leasing them.