The Churches of Britain and Ireland

Frequently Asked Questions

  • How can I submit pictures of churches?

    By e-mail, with attached digital camera images, or scanned images, or a compressed (zip) archive, or by mail via CD or DVD. Contact the undersigned for address details.

  • What size of image is preferred?

    I aim to use images on the web-site at 10" in the longest dimension, 72 dpi (which is the usual resolution of computer monitors). With a typical .jpg compression, this means images are usually up to 250 kB on the web-site. I like photos to be sent in larger than this, to enable cropping where necessary. But if you can't re-size the photos, just send them as they are.

    Many images I receive are on a slight angle. I can correct this, but it's not possible if the frame is completely filled with the building. Aim to leave plenty of space round the church itself.

  • What information is required?

The location of the church (village, town, and suburb if appropriate), the type of church (C. of E., R.C., Methodist, Mosque, etc.), the dedication (if known). The Ordnance Survey or Irish grid reference and a link to the church web-site or other source of information about the church are nice to have too. And whether the church is normally open or closed, or if a key is available. If you know the year the photo was taken, I will add that to the entry as well.

  • What church pictures are welcome?  

    Any churches, not just the ancient parish churches, and of any denomination or sect. The only stipulation is that the church must be from the UK, Eire, or the various smaller British Isles.
    Interior photos are welcome too, but if people are present the issue of safeguarding may arise, and you should be respectful of peoples privacy, and avoid taking photos, particularly if there are children present. There are plenty of websites which offer advice around the issues of safeguarding.

  • What about copyright?

    By submitting a photograph, you are implying that it is your work, and the photo will be credited " Your Name" or similar. Only submit original artwork if you are sure of its copyright status; and ownership doesn't necessarily imply copyright ownership. Scans from books can be sent in, provided the book is out of copyright. Send the book title, author, publisher, and year of publication, along with the scanned image. A link to a Leeds University web-page explains the rules of copyright pertaining to photographs.

  • Why can't I find a particular church?

    The most likely reason is that it simply hasn't been submitted as yet. Possibly you are looking in the wrong place - see this link for an explanation of the counties used. It may be worth looking in the GENUKI concordance mentioned there for alternate counties to search in. Alternatively, use the placename index.

  • How many churches are there?

    According to an recent article on the radio, there are currently "about 40,000" churches, synagogues, mosques, etc. This total didn't include Eire. Add some thousands more for buildings converted to secular use or demolished. A total of 50,000 is not impossible.
    However, since I wrote this, Howard Richter has referred me to this website, which lists all licensed places of worship in England and Wales (except Church of England) which he estimates contains about 32,000 churches. A Church Near You, which lists all CofE churches, has 16,537 churches. I don't have any figures for the Church in Wales, or totals for Scottish or Irish churches. On top of this there are large numbers of buildings which used to be churches. So in all probability, the total will be nearer 100,000 than 50,000.
    See also this interesting website.

  • What if I'm approached by someone wanting to use one of my photographs?

If I receive a request by someone wanting to use a photograph, I will always forward the request on to the copyright owner.
Any arrangement you make is entirely between yourselves. But if it is to be a commercial arrangement, the NUJ Freelance Fees Guide may be of use.




04 March 2023

Steve Bulman.

Contact Details