Under the guidance of Church Council, to whom it is responsible, the Services’ Team provides background help and support in many areas of the life, work and witness of Burley in Wharfedale Methodist Church. Historically, the Services’ Team was known as the Property and Finance Committee and whilst these two responsibilities still account for the majority of its work, it now has a wider role which is reflected in the name change.
The Team currently has a membership of eight including the Revd Tim Perkins our Minister and a Church Steward. Between them, the Team members have experience in finance, property maintenance, IT, and Health and Safety issues which cover most areas of responsibility. Part of the Team’s remit is to keep up to date with changes in legislation as it affects the Church’s activities and to alert the Church Council accordingly. Regular Team meetings are held a minimum of four times a year but extra meetings are also called when specific issues need earlier attention.
On the finance side, the Team has specific responsibility, through the Church Treasurer, to prepare an annual budget for the Church. (which is currently £57,000, excluding donations to the church’s charities). The Team monitors the church finances, administers the Gift Aid scheme, sets room booking fees, issues licenses to groups hiring the premises, and negotiates contracts on behalf of the Church Council for such things as church cleaning and the supply of “green” energy.
The Church makes every effort to be a community resource by making the premises available for the use of local community groups. For instance, every week day morning during term time, 30+ pre-school children attend ‘Little School’ held in the upstairs hall and ancillary rooms. The Church also hosts the Burley in Wharfedale Junior and Senior Community Choirs, two separate Bridge clubs, two after school Cyber Café’s for junior and secondary school children, and a community meeting for handicapped adults. All this is in addition to the usual church activities and meetings and so it is little surprise that the majority of regular expenditure is incurred in maintaining, heating and lighting the building, which is the Team’s responsibility. The Team aims to give the congregation and visitors alike, a ‘warm and comfortable welcome’. Church Council made the decision some time ago to “go green” and take active steps to reduce the church’s “carbon footprint”. This policy guides the Team’s property maintenance decisions as they continually strive to make improvements whether through the control of the church boilers, or just by changing light bulbs.
By careful stewardship of our resources, the Team aims to ensure that the Church will have well used, and well maintained premises which are fit to hand on to future generations, so they may continue the work and witness of the people called Methodists, in Burley in Wharfedale.