PCC 401

PCC Minutes: Monday 28th November 2022

St Luke’s Church, Grayshott


Meeting 401 of the PCC in Timothy Room at 7.30 pm.



PCC Members:  Revd Jeremy Haswell, Sheila Austin, Edward Tobin, Philippa Whitaker, Clive Purkiss, Clive Loder, Jeremy Hassell, Alice Murphy, Frankie Kelly, Allison Sutcliffe,  Viv Ward.


In attendance:

Dan Bennett (youth minister)


1. Welcome and opening prayer

Revd Haswell opened the meeting with a reading from Philippians ch.4 & a prayer.


2. Apologies recived from:  Revd Elizabeth Knifton, Chris Grocock, Penny Thomas, Floss Mitchell, Ros Balfour.


3. Minutes of PCC Meeting 400 on Monday 26th September 2022

The minutes were agreed. proposed: Viv Ward; seconded: Revd. Jeremy Haswell.

A copy of the minutes was signed by the chairman (Revd. Jeremy Haswell).


4. Matters arising:

  • Sharing the Load: The Vicar’s PA, Lucie Thornton, will be added to the schedule.
  • Parish Funding Programme (PFP) update: Sheila confirmed the team will meet again in the New Year.
  • Risk Assessments: At present filed in the Log Book in the vestry but a separate file exclusively for risk assessments is desirable. Viv mentioned that an electronic folder was available on one-drive but is very out of date. A template for future risk assessments will be helpful. Action: Edward.
  • DBS Clearances: Penny Thomas, PCC safeguarding lead, was in New Zealand at present but will update.


5. Finance Report

Viv Ward outlined the main points in his report:

  • Taking the past 9 months, the net surplus was £9,456. This was £23,961 better than budget.
  • Regular giving (with gift aid) was down by £3,729 as many have left, but many have increased their giving in response to the Parish Funding Programme (PFP).
  • £3,147 has been received in single donations (probably in response to PFP)
  • Fundraising income from concerts was down by £5,148. The Last Night of the Proms concert was cancelled following the Queen’s death in September.
  • Parish Fees (Weddings and Funerals) and Lettings (including use of rooms by Crossways Counselling earlier in 2022) were above budget by £8,927.
  • Salaries & National Insurance were £9,578 better than budget as we had not employed a worship leader or choir leader/organist.

Viv has prepared a reforecast using the data over the nine months and estimating the last quarter, assuming inflation is 6% and taking account of new energy prices:

  • Annual Energy costs (via Parish Buying) will increase from £6k to £18k assuming similar consumption.


  • The Youth Budget is £2k better than budget. This is enhanced by a generous donation of £5k annually for 3 years and a grant of £6k for this year from Grayshott parish council (not EHDC) towards running the youth club (The Base) & Dan’s salary.
  • By the end of the year, there will be a combined deficit of £22k when the reserves are estimated will be £53k (combined general & youth funds). This is in keeping with the guide that 25% of our operating costs should be in reserves, but we should not keep eating into reserve funds.
  • Next year’s budget assumes this year’s expenditure with a forecast of 6% inflation (including uplift of salaries), outward giving is estimated at 10% of our annual income. Viv’s projection is that, at the present level of expenses, reserves will run out around February or March 2024.
  • There are small funds with restricted clauses (when donated) about their use.
  • The Vicar’s Relief Fund has £5,300 in it present.
  • The building fund (restricted) has £22k but this is needed for church maintenance.
  • Frankie Kelly confirmed that her son, Christopher, should be in a position for act as independent auditor for us (provided our annual income is less than £250k).
  • The Finance Working Group has considered this serious position. Viv hopes to get the Finance Working Group to meet in the next 2 weeks.   


The vicar thanked Viv for his detailed report and warnings, particularly regarding heating costs. PCC members discussed this. Heating costs should be passed on to people hiring the church or church hall/rooms. A suggestion that poorly attended services might be held in the Timothy Room was made. Viv reminded the PCC that the standing charges for heating had also increased (annually £900 to £1900). This will not change even if energy consumption is reduced. Edward stated that the heating in church operates for one hour each morning but there is no timed heating in the Timothy Room.


Regarding fundraising, the vicar thanked Clive and Gill Purkiss for their effort in providing Sunday lunch as a fundraising venture. This is proving very popular and they are booked up until February 2023. He also thanked Sheila for her work in organising the Christmas is Coming concert the coming Sunday evening.


6) Vicar’s Report

  • The Vicar’s Personal Assistant, Lucie Thornton, had been in post since September and was learning the job very fast. Viv had been helping her with the financial matters.
  • Jeremy mentioned that live music at the 10.30am Sunday service the previous day had been much appreciated.
  • In the afternoon, tea in the Timothy Room had been arranged particularly for newcomers to the village. The vicar and PCC members discussed this and other examples of outreach.
  • Sheila Austin asked about the funding of Grayshott Today magazine. Businesses are less able to afford the advertising costs in the present financial climate. The vicar confirmed that the church is unable to subsidise the cost. The vicar has been in contact with possible sponsors and the Parish Council Secretary, Katie Weir to see if other funding can be found. Viv pointed out that staff were not paid to edit and run the magazine. He stated that the quality of paper used had gone down to reduce costs. In the past, the church magazine was sold for about 50p a copy and delivered by volunteers. If costs increased, it may have to go just online.


7) Churchwardens’ Reports.


  • As well as heating costs, the cost of floodlighting and Christmas lights had been considered by the assistant churchwardens. Clive Loder had calculated the cost each night is roughly £2.24 or 28pence/hour. This year the lights will go off at 11pm instead of midnight.
  • The churchyard team are making good use of the “Billy Goat” leaf collector.
  • Richard Pimm has found suitable quarry tiles to replace the broken tiles in the porch.
  • The main stage set up for Grayshott concerts will remain in place until 17th December. This was for the school carol services and for the fundraising concert Christmas is Coming. Space for the children’s play area has been left at the back of the church.


  • Sheila had attended a churchwarden’s training day in early November. There is a new procedure for faculty applications from 1st July this year. There is a document of 28 pages on file.
  • Bellringers had asked for the ringer’s fees at weddings and funerals to be increased from £15 / rope to £20. This was proposed by Sheila and seconded by the vicar. It was approved by all the PCC with one member (a bellringer) abstaining having expressed an interest.
  • Sheila requested PCC members support the fundraising concert in church on Sunday 4th December. Only 47 tickets had been sold on line so far out of about 200 – 280 places. Promotions are ongoing at St. Edmunds and Red Rose Tea Rooms.

8) Report by Youth Minister

  • The vicar thanked Dan for his work with children on Sundays and for organising the Light Party on 31st October.
  • Dan has been in touch with the parish council.
  • There will be a film at the village hall on 21st and 22nd
  • Dan has been in discussion with the headmaster of St. Edmund’s School about financial support and the vicar will be meeting him this Thursday, 1st December.

Dan left the meeting at 8.56pm


9) Report on Prayer & Discipleship

The vicar thanked Brenda Schwartz for the prayer WhatsApp group and the morning meditations. Sheila reminded the PCC about the monthly prayer meeting on 2nd Tuesday each month.


10) Report on Pastoral Work

The vicar thanked Ros Balfour for all her report and all the work she has put in with individuals and the nursing homes.


The vicar pointed out that the PCC post for a champion for the outreach team remains vacant.


AOB: David Williams had contacted PCC member Jeremy Hassell about an inexpensive contactless cardreader system that might be used in church. David is using this to collect donations at the Carols in the Square event on Christmas Eve.


The meeting closed with the Lord’s Prayer and the Grace at 9.23pm.

The date of the next meeting 30 January 2023.

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