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Common Mission Fund Review Group

Common Mission Fund Review Group

Introduction and Background

The Common Mission Fund (CMF) was launched in 2015 following its approval by Diocesan Synod in 2014. In 2018/2019 a small reflection group carried out a review to identify the key areas of difficulty being experienced by some parishes and to recommend ways of assisting them and so improving the system by adding greater sustainability and rigour to the model. The Group was not asked to consider alternative models of parish share systems.

The recommendations from this group were approved at Diocesan Synod in November 2019 and implemented for the 2020 request onwards. These were:

  • Move to a 5 year rolling average (from 3) for Community of Worshippers (CoW) figures.
  • The reduction offered to parishes with CoW over 200 should remain.
  • Multi-Parish benefices with a combined CoW of over 200 should not be eligible for the larger CoW reduction.
  • Launch a Communications Campaign around the CMF.
  • Changes to process:
    • Make historic CoW figures available to parishes
    • Use of terminology “CoW” rather than “WComm”
    • Commitment to update affluence data every 3 years
    • Encourage greater use of flight path
    • Allow benefices to request their CMF contribution is displayed at benefice level rather than parish

We recognise that the Diocese of Winchester and the wider world is now in a significantly different place to when the Common Mission Fund was introduced in 2015 and when the last review took place in 2018. So a new Common Mission Fund Review Group has now been tasked by the Bishop’s Council with making suggestions around the CMF operational process, for approval by Diocesan Synod, for implementation in 2025 onwards. The group is not looking at alternative models or systems for how the Common Mission Fund is allocated, but will make recommendations on how to improve the current model.

When starting this task, the review group were struck by the positive engagement and change that stemmed from the 2024-2026 triennial budget consultation process, so it has modelled the CMF consultation on this. The group has committed to listening and working together with all clergy and parishes on this. As part of this, they have put together some questions for parishes, the link to complete the survey can be found here:


The deadline for responses is 9 February 2024.

Group Membership

Elspeth Mackeggie-Gurney (Chair)

Elspeth is Chair of the Diocesan Finance Committee and a member of Bishop’s Council. Elspeth is a fully qualified Chartered Accountant who spent her career working in public practice, industry and latterly the charity sector. In addition to this, she has been the Finance Committee Chair for Alton Deanery since 2018 and holds a BCM in creation care in her parish role.

Simon Newham

Simon is vicar of Brockenhurst, Boldre and South Baddesley, Area Dean for Lyndhurst and a member of Diocesan Synod.

Simon Robertson

Simon is vicar of Bitterne Park, Southampton and joint Area Dean for Southampton.

Andrew Holder

Andrew has been Finance Chair for Winchester Deanery since 2017, and is a member of St John the Baptist Church in the East Winchester Benefice. An economist by training, he is the Bank of England’s Agent for Central Southern England, acting as a link between local businesses and policymakers in Threadneedle Street.

Michael Coleman

Michael is the Finance Chair for Andover Deanery and a member of Diocesan Synod. He previously served as PCC Treasurer in his home parish.

Emma Du Croz

Emma is Operations Manager of Saint Mary’s Church, Southampton. Saint Mary’s is a church community in the city centre, following the way of Jesus playing our part in the renewal of all things.

Andrew Croom-Johnson

Andrew has been the PCC Treasurer of the rural parish of Binsted, Hampshire since 2017.

Maddie Hedley

Maddie is the Churchwarden and Treasurer Parish of Longstock, and a member of Bishop’s Council. She holds a BCM in Worship and Bishop’s Permission to Preach in her parish role. Prior to retirement she was the regional director for a local government organisation in the south east.


Phase 1 – Discern
  • 8 January 2024 – 9th Feb 2024 – Consultation questions shared to all Churchwardens, Treasurers, Benefice Licensed Clergy and PCC Secretaries
  • 24 January (6pm) and 25 January (6pm) – Open consultation meetings via zoom, all welcome to attend: Meeting ID: 899 3524 0716 Passcode: 177354
  • 1 February 2024 – Consult at Informal meeting of house of clergy
  • 6 February 2024 – Consult at Lay Chairs Forum
  • 7 February 2024 – Consult at Informal meeting of house of laity
Phase 2- Design
  • 12 February – Review Group reviews responses and begins to prepare recommendations
  • 29 February and 12 March 2024 – Verbal update to Clergy Breakfast Briefing
  • 26 March 2024 – Deanery Finance Chairs forum – present initial recommendations for verbal feedback
  • 8 April 2024- Diocesan Finance Committee – present initial recommendations for feedback
  • 25 April 2024 – provide verbal update on initial recommendations for feedback
  • 2 May 2024 – Informal meeting of house of clergy – present initial recommendations for feedback
  • 14 May 2024- Informal meeting of house of laity – present initial recommendations for feedback
Phase 3: Distil
  • 21 May 2024 Diocesan Finance Committee – Present final report
  • 4 June 2024 – Bishops Council – Present final report for approval and recommendation to Synod
  • 5 and 6 June 2024 – Clergy breakfast Briefing Update
  • 19 June 2024 – Diocesan Synod – Present final report for consideration

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