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Thursday, August 16, 2018

The Church Wall

The Walls of All Saints Dulverton Churchyard


Update - December 2017, The repairs to the now legendary Church Wall of Dulverton’s All Saint Church are complete. The footpath is open.

To get this wall repaired Dulverton Town Council (DTC) with the support of the local church and a local resident (Ivan Gunn) has pushed long and hard to find a long term solution (so we won’t be called on to repair it again) to consider the conservationists wants and most importantly not spend any more money than was absolutely necessary. To satisfy all 3 conditions completely turned out to be impossible.

During the last five years what should have been a relatively easy task of rebuilding the main church boundary wall grew unbelievably difficult. The stance taken by the “Diocese of Bath & Wells (DB&W) ” (for want of a better name – the Main Church and its Chancellor (a barrister) and three objectors – the South West Heritage Trust (SWHT), a private individual and our own Nation Park Authority.

Now the bills are in we can count the cost, The wall to the right of the church came to around £55,000 (updated final account + £8,000 = £63,000) including the Diocese of Bath & Wells Costs £1,300 the professional fees of £5,500.  All plus VAT.

The Repairs to the back wall a £7,400 which was reduced to £5,900 thanks to a donation from the owners of the Old School House.

Why is Dulverton having to pay the bill - All Saints Churchyard was finally closed by order of the Ministry of Justice in 2007 at the request of the Parochial Church Council (PCC) and as a consequence, Dulverton Town Council is legally responsible for the maintenance of its church yard and its boundary walls under the Local Government Act 1972.  

Click here to view the time line of events in more detail  and get an understand of  why it will cost Dulverton


In 2007 a closure order was granted and the maintenance of the churchyard was transferred to DTC along with the expense associated with such a task. There was a 3 month window where it could have been passed to the District Council. However, WSC could have imposed a specific project charge on the Dulverton Town and Parish to support this maintenance requirement year by year, and their maintenance proposals were deemed unacceptable if the churchyard was to be maintained to a reasonable standard. Consequently DTC have a responsibility to maintain the churchyard and its walls (although still owned and insured by the church) in terms of Health and Safety, this includes grave stones, wall etc. DTC’s own insurance covers for 3rd Party risks. 


Click here to view the time line of events and get a greater understand of WHY :

It will costs to the Council Tax payers of Dulverton

 DTC response to the Objections raised against our proposal to repair theAll Saints Church wall running along the public right of way.


NB: worth a look is the emails used by Nic Wall to support his objections –

Nic Wall currently works for West Somerset Heritage Trust and has been involved in the Dunster Pavement situation. 

 If you are going to read the objections you should see DTC reponses also.

 The Objections - Click here to view part 1 of 2

 The Objections - Click here to view part 2 of 2


Dulverton Town Council response addressing all of the objections put forward.

Click here to view part 1 of 3 parts

Click here to view part 2 of 3 parts

Click here to view part 3 of 3 parts