Faith and Place network leaders, Dr Andrew Rogers and Dr Richard Gale, have recently joined with CAG Consultants and Land Use Consultants to work on a research project with the London Borough of Barking and Dagenham. Entitled the Religious Meeting Places Project, the research aims to improve understanding of faith group facilities in the borough, both in terms of current provision and usage, as well as looking at future faith facility needs in the borough. The project will also consider the Council’s policy on engagement with faith groups. The Religious Meeting Places Project is due to report by early summer.
If you would like to know more about participating in this project, please call 07902 310690 or email email@example.com
The Faith and Place network is delighted to announce the publication of our Wales policy briefing this month. You can download an electronic version in English or Welsh here. Dual language print versions are being sent out to local planning authorities and religious organisations in Wales over the next few weeks. The Archbishop of Wales, Barry Morgan, had this to say about the July 2016 Wales policy briefing:
Bydd y canllaw hwn yn cael ei groesawu’n fawr, a’i werthfawrogi’n arbennig gan grwpiau ffydd nad ydynt yn ddigon ffodus i gael cefnogaeth adrannau eiddo sefydliadol, yn ogystal â chynllunwyr sy’n ceisio cael dealltwriaeth well o’r anghenion a’r posibiliadau o fewn eu cymunedau.
This guide is very welcome, and will be particularly appreciated by faith groups who are not fortunate enough to be backed up by organisational property departments, and by planners seeking a better understanding of the needs and possibilities within their communities.
For the full message from the Archbishop, click here.
The Faith and Place network met for the first time at The Royal Foundation of St Katharine on 4th December 2014. The report below summarises the key themes and discussions of the day.
1.1 The purpose of the first event of the Faith and Place Network was to explore, from a diversity of perspectives, the interrelations between faith, place and the politics of planning. Above all, it placed emphasis on exploring accounts from faith community representatives, planners and policy professionals, to begin teasing out the hidden histories and current realities surrounding the faith, place and planning nexus. This was a significant first step towards achieving the network goals, both to bring together participants from a range of faith, planning and professional backgrounds and to produce policy relevant guidance on religious space and planning practice.
1.2 This report attempts to capture and synthesise the rich variety of themes that were explored throughout the presentations and discussions that made up the Perspectives event, and in turn, to provide network participants with a platform on which to build in the subsequent network events. The various sections below are our attempt to organise the key ideas articulated by network members, according to the over-arching topics and themes that emerged throughout the day. Continue reading Perspectives report
Recent research by the Social Integration Commission has identified churches and other places of worship as more successful than any other social setting at bringing people of different backgrounds together. This is ahead of gatherings such as parties, meetings or venues such as pubs and clubs. The caveat is that spectator sports were the most successful at bringing people of different ages together.
Reported in the Sunday Telegraph on 7/12/14, the chair of the Commission said:
“Institutions play a huge role in determining how and with whom we interact. Our research shows that, perhaps contrary to perceived wisdom, activities such as attending a place of worship or a sporting event can bring people from all sorts of backgrounds together.
“These institutions could play a leading role in promoting social integration. Sporting and religious bodies should explore what more they can do to help build a better integrated society.”
You won’t find these points about places of worship and social integration in the downloadable reports by the Commission, but they have sent the Faith and Place network some of their data sets, as such a finding resonates with themes raised at our first Perspectives event.