General Management of the Parish Centre Constitution


New civil legislation called, “The Charities Act 2006” now governs all charities in England and Wales.. All parishes are one registered charity under the control of the Diocesan Trustees. This means all parish buildings and institutions are under the direct ownership and control of the central Diocesan Trust. The Diocesan Trustees, therefore, are answerable in law for the operation, maintenance and financial control of all parish buildings and institutions.

All previous Constitutions, which do not comply with the above, are null and void.

The Diocesan Trustees are proposing to establish a Management Committee for St. Mary’s Parish Centre of Levenshulme parish under a Chairperson nominated by the parish priest.


A. General

1. The general management of St. Mary’s Parish Centre, Levenshulme, shall be managed by a committee known as the Parish Centre General Management Committee. (Management Committee hereafter).

2. St. Mary’s Parish Centre property is under the direct control of the Diocesan Trust in accordance with civil legislation (The Charities Act 2006). The Diocesan Trustees are represented by the parish priest.

B. Objects

1 (a) The Management Committee shall provide facilities in the Parish Centre for religious, cultural and educational activities, recreation and leisure for the parishioners who live in the parish of Levenshulme and surrounding areas.

1 (b) The Management Committee shall make available the parish centre for the use of parish groups and parishioners who wish to hire the parish centre. Other established groups, may hire the parish centre for such activities as are acceptable to the Management Committee. The Management Committee will encourage and co-operate with such groups in their use of the parish centre in accordance with these objects.

C. Management Committee

1 (a) The Management Committee shall be established for a three year term and shall be constituted as follows:

(I) The Management Committee will consist of twelve members.

(ii) The Parish Priest shall nominate the chairperson.

(iii) All members of the Management Committee shall be parishioners and reside within the parish boundary.

(iv) A meeting of parishioners who are not members of regular user groups shall be called by the chairperson appointed by the parish priest and four nominees
shall be accepted and their appointment shall be ratified by the parish priest within four weeks of the meeting.

(v) A meeting shall be called by the chairperson appointed by the parish priest of all regular parish user groups. Four nominees shall be offered by the regular user groups from four different regular user groups. These nominees shall be accepted and their appointment shall be ratified by the parish priest with four weeks of the meeting.

(vi) Only the parish priest shall have the power to replace the chairperson.

(viii) Members shall be appointed for a three year term and may be reappointed for a second three year term.

(vii) Membership of the Management Committee shall be terminated:

(a) after a six year term is served
(b) if the member leaves the parish

(viii) The Management Committee shall act by a simple majority.

(ix) The chairperson shall have a second or casting vote.

(x) At any Management Committee meeting a quorum shall consist of five members of whom one shall be the chairperson.

(b) In the event of a vacancy arising, nominations will be sought from the relevant grouping (i.e. regular user groups or non-members of regular user groups who reside within the parish boundary) and a new member will be appointed by the parish priest.

(c) The committee, (at its inaugural meeting or at any time thereafter for purposes of filling any vacancy), shall elect the following officers and shall apportion appropriate duties accordingly:-

(i) Secretary

(ii) Treasurer
(d) The Parish Priest shall be an ex-officio member of the Management Committee and have the right to attend and address all meetings and shall otherwise be kept informed by the chairperson or secretary, as the case may be, of the current business of the Management Committee and matters touching on the interests of the parish centre.

(e) The Management Committee shall meet at least four times per year and shall keep minutes and records of all proceedings.

(f) The Parish Priest may, where it is required, appoint a caretaker committee to administer the parish centre until the reconstitution of a new Management Committee in accordance with the provision set out above.

D. Responsibilities and Duties of the Management Committee

1 (a) The Management Committee shall be responsible for all activities in the parish
Centre and shall have the responsibility to determine the allocation of space and times to the various user groups and to control the use of the parish centre.

(b) The Management Committee shall monitor and supervise the use of the parish centre and the Management Committee members shall have the right of access to the parish centre at all times for this purpose.

(c) The Management Committee shall be responsible for minor repairs and the maintenance of the parish centre. It shall not incur any expenditure more than £1000 (inclusive of VAT) at any given time without the approval of the Parish Priest.

(d) The Management Committee shall have the right to delegate any of its duties as it so determines and shall have the power to appoint sub-committees from its membership for such purposes and shall have the right to co-opt non-committee members and non-parish members with relevant expertise on an ad hoc basis.

(e) Sub-committees shall consist of three members. The chairperson of any sub-committee shall be a member of the Management Committee. Recommendations of any sub- committee shall be forwarded to the Management Committee by the chairperson of that sub-committee for ratification.

(f) The Management Committee shall undertake to see that all aspects of the parish centre’s programme and activities and all its assets are properly insured.

(g) We strongly recommend that all user groups of the parish centre should have their own public liability insurance.

(h) Items other than those supplied by the parish centre are not covered under the parish centre public liability insurance and the ‘hirer’ must produce an insurance certificate to cover such an item and indemnify the Parish Centre from any liability before the booking shall be accepted.

(i ) All user groups shall be required to give to the Management Committee a written and signed assurance that they have a recognised Child Safeguarding policy before they are allowed to use the parish centre facilities.

(j) The Management Committee shall ensure that the Parish Centre complies with all aspects of the law regarding Health and Safety with no budgetary restrictions.

E. Finance

1 (a) The Treasurer shall be responsible to the Management Committee for all receipts and payments and for the keeping of such books and records of accounts as may be required by the committee. The Treasurer shall be responsible to ensure that all funds be paid into the Parish Centre’s bank account within seven days of receipt.

(b) The financial year of the Management Committee shall end on 31st December and the year’s accounts, balance sheet, and other relevant documents shall thereafter be made available to the Management Committee and Parish Priest. After the accounts have been accepted by the parish priest they shall be presented at the Annual General Meeting.

(c) All monies raised by or on behalf of the Management Committee shall be used to further the objects of the Management Committee and for no other purpose provided that nothing contained herein shall prevent the payment of legitimate expenses to any member of the Management Committee and fees to professional and technical advisors.

(d) All cheques shall require the signature of the parish priest.

(e) The Management Committee shall fix such fees or charges for the use of the parish centre as may be deemed necessary. Charges and fees shall be reviewed annually.

(f) It shall be the duty of the Management Committee to ensure as far as is possible that the fees and charges for the use of the parish centre are sufficient to cover the annual running cost and maintenance of the parish centre.

F. Alterations and Amendments to the Constitution

Requests for alterations and amendments to this constitution shall be put in writing to the Management Committee. The Management Committee shall scrutinize the request for any breach of “The Charities Act 2006” before forwarding the proposed alterations or amendments to the parish priest for ratification.

G. Annual General Meeting (AGM)

The Annual General Meeting of the Management Committee shall be held during the month of March each year or as soon as possible after the receipt of the accounts by the parish priest. Twenty one days’ notice of the meeting must be given in advance of the AGM.

H. Special General Meeting (SGM)

A Special General Meeting shall be called by the secretary upon receipt of a written request signed by 5 members of regular parish centre user groups.

I. Discipline

(a) The Management Committee shall have overall responsibility for discipline within the parish centre and its immediate surrounding area (car park).

(b) The Management Committee shall, where due cause appears, have the power to suspend any individual or group from using the parish centre or from participation in specified or all activities in the parish centre.

(c) The Management Committee shall have the power to require any person or group found responsible for damage to or the loss or misappropriation of any part of the parish centre’s fixtures, fittings or equipment to make good same at the expense of such person or group.

J. Parish Centre Staff

Parish Centre Staff shall be managed by the members of the Management Committee on a basis approved by the Management Committee. The Management Committee shall be responsible for the efficient discharge of the duties of staff members. The day-to-day management of the parish centre staff shall be the responsibility of a nominated Management Committee member.

K. Keys to the Parish Centre

Keys for the parish centre for a specific use agreed by the Management Committee may be obtained from the nominated Committee Management member by a nominated member of a user group who will be responsible for opening and closing the parish centre and their safe keeping. This nominated member shall sign a form of acceptance, agreeing to the above arrangements.

L. Interpretation

(I) The committee after due consultation with the parish priest shall be the sole arbiter on any question affecting the interpretation of any of the above clauses or any terms and conditions and bye-laws made hereunder.

(ii) Parish Centre ) St. Mary’s Parish Centre, Levenshulme

(iii) Parish Priest ) The Diocesan Trustees

(iv) Management Committee ) Parish Centre General Management Committee


(1) At the date of the establishment of the Constitution the User Groups in the Parish Centre were:

  • Irish Community Care
  • Irish School of Dancing
  • Line Dancing
  • St. Mary’s Set Dancing
  • Legion of Mary
  • St. Mary’s Active Retirement Group
  • Little angels Pre-School Play Group
  • Children’s Street Dance Class (9 – 16 yrs)
  • Ladies Zumba Classes
  • Breakfast Club
  • Adult Beginners Ballroom & Latin American
  • Adult Improvers Ballroom & Latin American
  • Children’s Street Dance (Under 10 years)
  • St. Mary’s Primary School
  • Sacramental Programme

(2) Definition of a Regular User Group member

A) An officer bearer
B) The nominated organiser of a user group that has no committee
C) Anyone within a User Group that provides leadership at individual Centre events

(3) Definition of a non user group

A) Must be a parishioner of the Parish of St. Mary’s or surrounding areas.


1. All applications for the hire of the parish centre facilities should be made to: Jennifer Jones (Manager) Tel. 07538 474 321.
2. Parish Centre bookings must be confirmed in writing. Booking forms are available for this purpose and must be completed before commencement of hire. For occasional bookings the relevant rental fee will be due and payable in advance whether or not the centre is used, unless written notification of cancellation is received not less than seven (7) days prior to the date of the booking.

3. Persons hiring any of the centre facilities must arrange to have sufficient responsible personnel in attendance to ensure there is no noisy or disorderly conduct, and to prevent damage to the centre premises, furniture and fittings therein. No furniture or fittings shall be used for any purpose other than that for which they are provided, or removed from the centre.

4. It is the duty of hirers and visitors to take care of themselves and others who may be affected by their activities and to co-operate with the Management Committee in ensuring that the premises, including the car park are safe and do not pose a risk to the health of those using the centre.

5. Equipment provided by users shall conform to health and safety regulations and shall be in good condition and capable of easy storage.
Equipment shall be stored in accordance with the instructions of the Management Committee. However, the Management Committee shall have no responsibility for the loss or damage to any equipment and have the right to refuse storage of any item.

6. The maximum number of persons to be accommodated on the premises at any one time depends on the proposed activity.

7. The hirer will be made aware of fire safety provisions before hiring the centre. The hirer will then take responsibility to ensure that adequate arrangements are made for responding to emergencies should any arise during the period of hire.

8. All approaches to and from passages within the premises shall be kept entirely free from any obstruction whatsoever. The arrangement of seating and tables in the hall must be such as to allow free and unobstructed access to the exits. It shall be the hirer’s responsibility to ensure that where disabled persons are present special arrangements are made for their safe evacuation in the event of fire as may be reasonable in the circumstances.

9. When children are present the requisite number of attendants from the user group shall be present to control the movement and take precautions for the safety of the children. The guidelines of the Play Groups’ Association or other relevant body shall be followed. The hirer shall satisfy himself/herself as to the safety and suitability of the facilities for the purpose and an overall responsible person shall be on duty during the whole time the children are on the premises.

10. User groups hiring the centre where children are present must comply with a recognised Child Safeguarding policy.

11. The hirer shall seek the permission of the Management Committee if he/she intends to engage in any activities on the centre premises (including the car park) that would introduce additional or special risks. The use of sound effects, smoke bombs, smoke generators, flash powder, flash boxes, detonators and similar items shall not be used. Fires, fireworks and the like are not permitted. Candles are not permitted unless they are an enclosed, protected type.

12. The hirer shall not engage in any activity which could cause a disturbance to the neighbourhood.

13. No extension or alteration shall be made to any electrical installation without the permission in writing of a member of the Management Committee.

14. The hirer shall not interfere with the lighting or heating of the hall.

15. A First Aid box is provided and is kept in the kitchen along with an accident book. A member of the Management Committee should be notified if any First Aid supplies are used. All accidents must be entered by the hirer in the accident book and a member of the Management Committee notified. Hirers are recommended to arrange for a qualified first aider to be present at all events at the hall.

16. Nails or pins must not be driven into walls or woodwork. Adhesive tape must not be used on any paintwork.

17. The hirer shall specify the precise use to which the Centre will be put when making the booking.

18. Smoking is not permitted in the parish centre.

19. The hirer shall, if preparing, serving or selling food, observe all relevant food health and hygiene legislation and regulations. In particular dairy products, vegetables and meat on the premises must be refrigerated and stored in compliance with the Food Temperature Regulations. A refrigerator is provided on the premises. The centre will not accept any responsibility for any food provided by the hirer. No persons under the age of 18 is to be allowed in the kitchen area.

20. Prior to any theatrical or other entertainment performance taking place a licence may be required from the local authority. Where this is the case, the hirer shall exhibit the licence on the notice board in the foyer.

21. The hirer shall treat the centre as if it were his/her own property and shall return the ` centre in at least as good a condition as it was in when he/she took it over at the beginning of the hire. Although there is no centre caretaker on duty at all times, cleaning of the hall and associated facilities will be arranged as necessary, but the hirer is expected to hand back the centre in a reasonably clean and tidy condition before leaving, including disposal of rubbish and sweeping the hall floor, as appropriate. Implements are supplied for this purpose.

22. For large meetings the hirer has a responsibility to ensure the maximum use is made of the car park to minimise congestion.

23. Before vacating the premises, the hirer must ensure that the hall is promptly cleared. Switch off all heating and lighting appliances, close all windows and lock all external doors and activate the burglar alarm.

24. Any damage to the centre must be reported and the hirer shall pay for the repair or replacement as necessary.

25. Any complaints must be made in writing to the Manager for consideration and action by the Management Committee.

26. The Management Committee reserves the right to refuse or cancel any bookings or to close any part of the building at any time.

27. Parish functions shall have priority over all bookings.

28. The Management Committee further reserves the right to alter or cancel any of the above terms and conditions at any time.
January 2012

General Management Committee Members

Parish Priest – President
Jennifer Jones/Chairperson
Sean Brennan – Treasurer

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