Thinking Anglicans

New Church of England Website

The Church of England website at www.churchofengland.org has been relaunched today with a new design and structure.

screenshot of new website in use

Adrian Harris, Head of Digital Communications at Church House, Westminster, explains the rationale here

[T]he old website received lots of traffic and interest, the confusing user experience and the 75,000+ documents and pages on the site were identified as key issues. These were resolved by content and plain English workshops for staff.

The five major changes visitors will see from today are:

  • Simple navigation, a good search engine, improved website accessibility, mobile first and a clean design! Over 250 professional new images have been shared by local churches and taken nationally that show the breadth of the Church and activities that go on.
  • A transformed Our faith section that explains Christianity in an engaging way. Built in collaboration with Church House Publishing, new videos form a key part of this project.
  • New Faith in action films that bring to life the missional work of the Church. All of the Faith in action and Our faith videos are available for local churches and dioceses to use on their own websites and social media accounts from our YouTube page.
  • A streamlined Prayer and worship section, including liturgical and prayer resources, thanks to the work of Church House Publishing. Prayer will feature at the heart of the website with the day’s Collect now far more visible.
  • A new Life events section better explaining baptisms, confirmations, weddings and funerals as well as vocations.

One of the consequences of the redesign is that many old links no longer work. This will apply to previous links from this site. Users are recommended to use the search functionality on the new site to find documents from old links.

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Simon SarmientoRPNewarkA Diocesan RegistrarCynthiaAnonymous layperson Recent comment authors
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Adrian Judd
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Adrian Judd

I presume then that this is why I couldn’t follow a google link today to information about ill health / early retirement and pensions for a colleague…

Kate
Guest
Kate

It feels superficial, like a brochure for an hotel.

Victoriana
Guest
Victoriana

I’m pleased to see they’ve finally de-tabled the Common Worship pages and created a better integration for copying and pasting text.

There are other parts of the website that are still a bit buggy, and it will obviously take a bit of time to work things out. But on the whole this is a major improvement.

The Anglican Church of Australia should certainly pay attention and learn from the C of E website. Maybe Sydney could drop a cool million dollars of back contributions to help…

Stanley Monkhouse
Guest

Mr Judd, a similar problem. Maybe someone can help. Retirement on Common Tenure: do I have to go the day of my 70th birthday, or could I stay until the day before my 71st?

Pluralist
Guest

There was a time when companies offered lots of dazzle in webpages with impenetrable code. I just plodded on. I was constantly told I was out of date and how interactive things could become. Now, the mobile phone has seemingly killed design and variety except to the simplest big text and scrolling down. I shall plod on. I dislike the menu reduced to the lines to the side, again dropping to big text. The principle of a presented menu is levels and layers and a presented menu with some design describes the site. WordPress with its cascading style sheets for… Read more »

Father David
Guest
Father David

Stanley, my understanding is that you can indeed stay in post until the eve of your 71st birthday if you so desire.
Of course, if you had your living before they changed the rules (possibly c. 1975) then you can stay until the day you are called to a greater glory.
In a previous parish one of my predecessors was inducted in the early 1950s and he eventually threw in the towel when he was on the cusp of 90.

Interested Observer
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Interested Observer

“One of the consequences of the redesign is that many old links no longer work”

This is hardly difficult to get right. Since performance is not of the essence for these sorts of historic links, it would be fine to simply have a text file which mapped links on the old site to links on the new site, and then use a RewriteMap or your webserver’s moral equivalent [1] to perform the translation. If you cared, and also of course if the ability to remove the embarrassing past were not attractive.

[1] http://httpd.apache.org/docs/trunk/rewrite/rewritemap.html

Richard
Guest
Richard

Yes, you may not hold an office (other than exceptionally) when you are “over 70” – which you’re not until you reach 71.

Stanley Monkhouse
Guest

I’m sure we’ll get used to it, and if it’s easier to download stuff that’s good. BUT, and this is a huge and increasing concern for me with only one functioning eye, and that glaucomatous and with cataract, I wish the print was blacker. The contrast could be better. Still, there are many worse websites as far as that is concerned, the worst for me being grey on white, or white on grey, Crazy.

Laurie Roberts
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Laurie Roberts

‘Marrying in church is personal, meaningful and spiritual just as you want it to be. Churches are special and unique places to get married in – the prayers, promises and the whole service of celebration become part of your marriage, on the day itself and beyond.’

So inviting — yet in fact this is a highly restricted service — as we know…

RPNewark
Guest
RPNewark

Stanley Monkhouse and Father David: The guidance found at https://www.churchofengland.org/sites/default/files/2017-10/ac-age-limit-measure-guidance-for-website-october-2017_0.pdf ( http://tinyurl.com/y8t2uguk ) and especially at Annex 1 indicates that the introduction of Common Tenure did not alter the provisions of the Ecclesiastical Offices (Age Limit) Measure 1975 which can be found at https://www.legislation.gov.uk/ukcm/1975/2/section/1 ( http://tinyurl.com/y7yxsf2z ). This states at Section 1 sub-section 3: “Subject to the following provisions of this Measure, a person who holds an office listed in the Schedule to this Measure shall vacate that office **on the day on which he attains the age of seventy years.”** (my emphasis). So it seems to me that to… Read more »

Alan T Perry
Guest
Alan T Perry

@Pluralist

Good points. I’m not sure whether it was designed for the visually impaired or to fulfil the biblical principles enunciated in Galatians 6:11.

Pretty pictures, though.

Stanley Monkhouse
Guest

Thank you RPNewark.

Susannah Clark
Guest

Let us consider the usefulness of this website to a young LGBT person – shall we say, aged 15 – who attends an Anglican Church on Sundays, and who feels lonely and misunderstood by their family and their peers at church… Key in “LGBT” in the search box on the home page… https://www.churchofengland.org/search-results?keys=LGBT Just 1 result found: “CofE senior manager recognised in two national LGBT awards 25/02/2016 NEWS / A senior manager at the CofE’s National Church Institutions based in Westminster has been recognised by two national LGBT award bodies.” Click on the title, and all you get is a… Read more »

Malcolm
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Malcolm

Where do I find General Synod Report of Proceedings. The search does not lead me to them

Anonymous layperson
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Anonymous layperson

The worship materials seem helpful, but it is extraordinary (to say the least) to see the “Third Exhortation from The Book of Common Prayer” within the Holy Communion (sic) pages. I think I’ve misunderstood the Church I have been signed up to.

Cynthia
Guest
Cynthia

Because of Susannah’s post, I followed up with a search for LGBT on the new website and got the same result. Searching for “same-sex marriage” will yield a ton of articles, mostly negative.

Contrast that with this LGBT search: https://www.episcopalchurch.org/search/site/LGBT
There is a great deal of presence and the vast majority of it is positive.

A Diocesan Registrar
Guest
A Diocesan Registrar

The “day before 71st birthday” is a common myth that just won’t die.

One “attains the age of 70 years” on one’s 70th birthday. Automatically out of office on that date, unless extended at the discretion of the BIshop (with the consent of the PCC).

RPNewark
Guest
RPNewark

“A Diocesan Registrar”, thank you for confirming my reading and understanding of the legislation.

Simon Sarmiento
Guest

If you are having trouble finding stuff at the CofE website, this article may be useful to you
http://www.lawandreligionuk.com/2017/11/20/re-launched-cofe-website-some-quick-links/

Simon Sarmiento
Guest

And if, a whole week later, you are still having trouble finding stuff, here’s another useful article
http://www.lawandreligionuk.com/2017/11/23/re-launched-cofe-website-further-links/