Mere Anglicanism

Chairman of the Churches Conservation Trust appointed

Her Majesty The Queen has today approved the appointment of the former Shadow Secretary of State for Culture Peter Ainsworth as Chairman of Trustees of The Churches Conservation Trust.

Her Majesty The Queen has today approved the appointment of the former Shadow Secretary of State for Culture Peter Ainsworth as Chairman of Trustees of The Churches Conservation Trust.

The national charity saving historic churches at risk, The Churches Conservation Trust is charged with protecting 349 beautiful buildings which attract almost 2 million visitors a year. The Trust’s collection includes irreplaceable examples of architecture, archaeology and art from 1,000 years of English history. Peter will take up the post of Chairman in July 2016.

Peter has been UK Chair of the Big Lottery Fund since 2011 and is a Board member of the Environment Agency. He was previously Chairman of Plantlife International and the Elgar Foundation. A former investment banker, he is a founding partner of sustainability consultancy the Robertsbridge Group. He is also a Patron of the College of St Barnabas.

Peter has served as Shadow Secretary of State for Culture, Shadow Secretary of State of the Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, and was Member of Parliament for East Surrey for 18 years until 2010. His involvement in the heritage sector dates back to 1995, when he was appointed Parliamentary Private Secretary to the Secretary of State for National Heritage; he was a member of the DCMS Select Committee in 2009-10.

Peter Ainsworth said:

“I am delighted to be joining The Churches Conservation Trust, an organisation which is pivotal to caring for our nation’s heritage whilst promoting cultural values, the arts, and regeneration. It returns important buildings to the heart of their communities.

“I am hugely impressed by the Trust’s inspiring dedication to the communities it serves, and look forward to joining nearly two million visitors a year in enjoying some of its 349 wonderful churches.”

Crispin Truman, Chief Executive of The Churches Conservation Trust said:

“We’re delighted that Peter is joining The Churches Conservation Trust as Chairman, and are very much looking forward to working with him. Peter brings a wealth of experience and opportunity to the CCT; not only is he a highly accomplished board chairman, but he brings the public-facing skills and the commitment we need at the CCT to help the Board and team raise our profile and attract wider support so we can secure the long-term future of our collection. I am hugely looking forward to showing him some of our stunning churches over the summer.”

The Churches Conservation Trust is the national charity saving historic churches at risk, charged with protecting 349 important church buildings which attract almost 2 million visitors a year.  The Trust’s collection includes irreplaceable examples of architecture, archaeology and art from 1,000 years of English history.

The Trust is the operator of the third largest heritage estate in charitable ownership in the UK and has an international award-winning reputation in heritage conservation and regeneration. All churches in the care of the Churches Conservation Trust are listed, mostly Grade I and II*, and some are Scheduled Ancient Monuments.

Without the care of the Churches Conservation Trust, the buildings they look after might have disappeared entirely. Instead they are enjoyed as social, tourism, educational or cultural resources, kept open, in use, and living once again in the heart of communities. All the Trust’s churches, including All Souls Bolton, remain consecrated and are used for occasional worship.   

The current Chairman Dr Loyd Grossman CBE FSA completes his second term in July. Previous Chairmen have included Rt Hon Frank Field MP, Sir David Stephens KCB CVO and Ivor Bulmer-Thomas CBE FSA.

For more, see http://www.visitchurches.org.uk/

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