Visitors to or Hiring of Church Premises

1. What are “Church Premises”?

They include buildings and properties such as:

  • Church
  • Presbytery
  • Parish Halls
  • Parish Centres
  • Religious Houses
  • Convents
  • Monasteries
  • Parish Centres
  • Retreat Houses/Centres

2. Principle

Church premises should give a sense of safety and security. For this reason even when they are being used by individuals or groups not normally associated with them (such as keep fit, dance groups etc), Church authorities should take all reasonable steps to ensure a safe and secure environment.

3. Written Agreements

Whenever there are non-parish activities involving children, young people or vulnerable adults on church premises, the Safeguarding Representative must be informed.

  • Where a non-parish based group uses church premises on a regular basis the Safeguarding Representative much ascertain that they have a safeguarding policy in place for their organisation, including proper recruitment procedures for their leaders and helpers and that references and DBS checks have been appropriately obtained.Evidence of this must be provided and continued use of the premises will be subject to this condition.
  • A written agreement should be signed by non-parish based groups using church premises detailing that EITHER they have their own safeguarding policy OR they will follow the National Procedures of the Catholic Church. Form CASE 7
  • If church premises are used on a casual basis or one-off basis for non-parish groups or events that involve children, young people or vulnerable elderly (e.g. parties) a written agreement is required that states:
    • It is a private booking;
    • The adults/parents organising the event will exercise a supervisory function and are responsible for safeguarding those who attend.