NET’s History with the Church of England
NET CS has a long-standing working relationship with the Church of England (CofE). This began in 2004, when QS4 secured the National Aerials Agreement with the Archbishops’ Council, and directly with the CofE since 2008 when NET acquired QS4 with the Archbishops’ Council approval. Since then, NET CS have completed several hundred cellular installations across all geographical areas of the CofE, generating tens of millions of pounds in revenue for the CoE.
The New Telecoms Code
Following the introduction of the new Telecoms Code in December 2017, NET CS have agreed Code compliant terms with the CofE and the Church in Wales (CinW), covering every type of cellular deployment and coverage solution. This includes everything from Microcells & Small Cells to Macro Sites and groundbreaking fully hosted technical solutions such as OpenRAN.
The Joint Accord
In 2018, the Church of England entered into a Joint Accord with Her Majesty’s Government to promote the use of church buildings and land, in order to support the increasing need for internet and mobile signals throughout England and Wales. As a result, NET’s partnership with the CofE was reinforced with a unique approved supplier contract with CHECS (the commercial arm of the Churches and Cathedrals Council).
As part of this contract, NET is working in partnership with the CofE and CinW to offer the portfolio of over 18,500 church buildings. These buildings are accessible through a bespoke off-the-shelf process and pre-approved set of Licences, offering substantial pre-Code savings, with no superior landlord Code related frustrations and delays or Land Tribunal timescales and costs.
The Benefits of Hosting Radio Equipment
From an individual church’s perspective, the benefits of hosting mobile phone radio equipment are manifold. The one-off sum and long-term recurring income paid by NET to each church, enables individual parishes to plan and fulfil their parish missions.
Perhaps more importantly, hosting this equipment will allow each church to play an integral role in providing their local community with vital communications services.
NET promotes the church portfolio locations to the Mobile Network Operators (MNO’s), once a church is nominated, NET will contact the church council to establish/confirm their interest and to initiate the process. The process includes everything from the initial survey, design, and securing of all necessary secular and ecclesiastical approvals, to legal completion and installation of the radio equipment.
The Church Team
NET CS have a highly experienced team dedicated to working on church sites. Our church Acquisition team has unrivalled knowledge of the Faculty Jurisdiction process, including the consultations required with secular and amenity bodies. We have a thorough understanding of all the prerequisite approvals, including pre-consultation and local planning approvals, through to Diocesan Chancellors’ approval (Faculty).
With regard to design and implementation, the NET CS Structural Engineers and dedicated CofE Build Managers have extensive experience in designing and installing apparatus within historic church buildings. NET’s installations are sensitive and concealed, and carefully designed to mitigate any impact on the fabric of the historic church buildings.