*** DEBUG END ***

The Pensions Board and state provision

08 February 2013


From the Bishop of Dudley
Sir, - As the outgoing vice-chair of the Pensions Board and incoming chair of the Remuneration and Conditions of Service Committee of the Archbishops' Council, may I reassure your readers on the concerns raised by Canon Earis ( Letters, 1 February)?

The decision of the General Synod to opt clergy back into the second state pension (S2P) in 2010 was perfectly sound, and was taken in full knowledge of the long-term uncertainties surrounding the future of state pensions. Opting in to S2P was an essential element of the changes that enabled the defined-benefit scheme to be kept open at a moment when the deficit was £262 million, and most other organisations were closing their schemes.

It enabled the Church to preserve as generous as possible a scheme for the clergy, which also remained affordable to those in the pews who ultimately pay the contributions.

The present Government has been thinking aloud about the state pension since 2010, and making periodic statements to that effect. A draft Bill, technical note, and impact assessment have recently been published, and a technical analysis of the proposals will be brought to the Remuneration and Conditions of Service Committee for further discussion.

Further changes to the proposed legislation are highly likely during its progress, and the new pension arrangements are not due to begin before 2017 at the earliest.

Even with the benefit of hindsight, it would have been unwise to have bet the Pension Scheme family silver in 2010 on future government policy changes that even now remain unclear.

Church of England Pensions Board
29 Great Smith Street
London SW1P 3PS

Letters to the editor

Letters for publication should be sent to letters@churchtimes.co.uk.

Letters should be exclusive to the Church Times, and include a full postal address. Your name and address will appear alongside your letter.

Train-a-Priest Fund 2022 Appeal

Please consider a donation to TAP Africa this year. Every penny you can give goes to ordinands in Africa who face financial difficulty, to support them as they complete their training. 

Donate online

Read more about this year's appeal

Forthcoming Events

24 May 2022
Disability and Church: Intersectionality
A joint webinar from HeartEdge and Church Times.

2 July 2022
Bringing Down the Mighty: Church, Theology and Structural Injustice
With Anthony Reddie, Azariah France-Williams, Mariama Ifode-Blease, Luke Larner, Will Moore, Stewart Rapley and Victoria Turner.

More events

Welcome to the Church Times

​To explore the Church Times website fully, please sign in or subscribe.

Non-subscribers can read four articles for free each month. (You will need to register.)