For the Church of England only the bishops now benefit, at what cost?

Bishop Ball & Prince Charles
Bishop Ball & Prince Charles

In 1598 Edward Darcy Esquire, a groom at the court of by Elizabeth 1st was granted a monopoly on the manufacture and sale of playing cards. He couldn’t make playing cards but the queen liked indirect ways of making money for herself without raising taxes, while controlling trade and rewarding those who pleased her.

It’s a nice example of the mentality of Tudor times and use of the royal prerogative. The monarch saw nothing wrong in granting a monopoly that controlled a trade, while financially benefited the…

A proposal for a low cost CPAP device

Caveat: if anyone reading this sees a potential problem with the approach or that it’s simply bad medical practice please let me know and I’ll take the post down.

Last year I created a simple device to help with high altitude sickness in an emergency, but progressed it only to a demo. Now, being in the middle of a pandemic with a shortage of ventilators I’m just putting it up as an idea to help in some circumstances.

Critical cases of COVID-19 see patients suffer from ARDS that requires mechanical ventilation. For…

The third in my series of Diocese wealth rankings, 2017 being found here. As I now have multiple years of figures the trends are becoming as interesting as the yearly figures, so I’ll refer to these quite often.

2018 Assets

The only change in the top ten was Southwark leaping over Chichester. While both suffered asset drops Chichester’s was steeper.

2018 Assets

Overall all Diocese shared an increase of just £34.5m, to £4,995,857 so just below the £5bn marker. A much lower increase though from 2017, which highlights some issues this year.

2018 Income

A similar list to last year, but with…

I’ve been playing around with this idea for a while, a way of visualising a whole life so you can see where you currently are and have a better idea of what’s to come.

We all suffer from a lack of perspective when it comes to our own life, some more than others, especially children! If you’ve only been on earth for five years it’s hard to wait an hour let alone plan for ten years time. But for those of us in adulthood there’s some seriously planning to do and perspective in this case is very important.

  • Are you…

There’s a song by Eddie Cochran called Summertime Blues which has the memorable verse:

Well, I called my congressman
And he said, quote:
“I’d like to help you, son
But you’re too young to vote”

and that’s as good a way as any to introduce the idea of votes to children.

The message in the song, as in life is that if you don’t have a voice and you don’t have influence then it’s not worth considering you. For an MP it simply isn’t in their interest to prioritise the needs of non-voters over the needs of those that can…

The Bishop of Norwich controls a charity with minimal oversight and scant reporting, can it truly be for the Public’s Benefit?

Did you see this article?

“W.Va. bishop gave powerful cardinals and other priests $350,000 in cash gifts before his ouster, church records show”

Here in the UK we might have a similar situation (well, just the cash gifts); step forward the Bishop of Norwich and his Anne French Memorial Trust. In just the last two reported years he has dispensed £347,014 ($435,190) to individual members of the clergy without identifying them or providing explanation, is that ok?

The Anne…

[New figures available for 2018]

Last year I compiled together and ranked the financial performance of all the 42 Church of England diocese in 2016 and put the numbers up here. The article remains one of my more popular ones so here’s the numbers updated for 2017, the current most up to date figures as published on the Charity Commission web site.

This year I haven’t listed the cathedral funding figures, they haven’t changed much and stay at a pitiful level, so lets move straight on.

2017 Assets

London and Oxford traded places again this year with London now on…

Collective worship has its history in a murky compromise between politicians and the church dating back to the Second World War — and it is long since time the arcane requirement was removed.

There is a growing consensus among educators, parents and academics that Collective Worship in schools should be abolished.

The debate was opened up again recently with the Wolf Institute’s ‘Report of the Commission on Religion and Belief in British Public Life’ which clearly came out against, calling for the legal requirement for schools to hold acts of collective worship to be repealed.

But how many people know…

While researching our recent revelations about CoE Cathedral grants it struck me the church lobbying process was very similar to chess, just with higher stakes. Using our FoI material (including letters not previously shown) I’ve noted down the interesting ebb and flow of moves.

The Bishops of London starts in Jan 2014. He asks for £10m a year, on the surface for ‘up to five years’, however that’s just from the government. After that he’d like the Repair Grants for Listed Places of Worship Scheme run by HLF to be ‘augmented’ so the payments can carry on. …

In 2014 the government set up a taxpayer-funded scheme for cathedral repairs. National Secular Society research exposes how the Church of England spent significant amounts of cash it didn’t need without being subject to proper scrutiny. By Chris Sloggett and Ed Moore.

In the 2014 Budget the chancellor George Osborne announced the First World War Centenary Cathedral Repairs Fund, a scheme which used public money to pay for cathedral repairs.

The National Secular Society has previously highlighted concerns about this project. …

Ed Moore

Father, husband, work in technology, dabble in secularism.

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