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Last updated 13th July 2020

Past Cases Review 2: Resources/information

This page contains everything parishes need to fully engage with Past Cases Review 2 (PCR2).

This is a summary of what follows:

  • An update on the progress of Past Cases Review 2 (PCR2)
  • Background to Past Cases Review 2 (PCR2)
  • Why our focus is on survivors at all times; including 'The 'Blackburn Letter'
  • Core documents to download for engaging with PCR2
  • Further advice and resources for parishes
  • Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) 
  • Further reading
  • General information on safeguarding plus comprehensive contact details

Progress on PCR2

The substantive work on PCR2 began in early 2020 (See Background paragraph below). Despite the Coronavirus restrictions, progress has been made and the Review has now entered its next phase.

Key developments are:

  • The appointment of two appropriately qualified and suitably independent Reviewers. They will examine all the personnel files held by the Bishop’s Office, Cathedral and Diocesan Office. They will also review all the cases on the Known Case List (KCL)
  •  Following detailed work with all of the Diocese’s parishes the Known Case List has been updated. The KCL includes cases relating to children and vulnerable adults. The action taken in these cases will also be reviewed.
  • Support for the survivors of abuse is at the heart of PCR2. A Survivor’s Care Strategy has been complied and a budget of £30,000 allocated to support victims. The funding of this support will be reviewed annually. Victims and survivors are encouraged to access the support available to them.
  • Phase 3 of PCR2. Our independent reviewer has commenced the review of files in scope. The PCR2 National Project Board has extended the deadline for completion of PCR2 to spring/summer 2021 due to the Covid restrictions.

Background to PCR2

We want to ensure our churches and church-related activities are as safe as possible for children and for vulnerable adults.

An initial ‘past case review’ in The Church of England took place around a decade ago to identify any ongoing risks to children and young people.

All Dioceses, including our own, have now been asked to extend the review in 2019-20 to include vulnerable adults as well as children and young people. This latest process is known as Past Cases Review 2 (PCR2).

The Bishop of Blackburn, the Rt Rev Julian Henderson (pictured), sent a letter on February 28, 2020 to all parishes (see Core Documents below) which includes further important information to help them work with the Diocesan Safeguarding Team and to ensure that collectively we complete the review promptly and effectively. All parishes MUST read and act on the information provided.

These website pages are also designed to be a 'one stop shop' of everything required by parishes for engagement with the PCR2 process. 

In his letter Bishop Julian says: "Thank you for all you do to make our churches a safe place for people to worship.

"PCR2 is a central part of the Church of England’s proactive approach to ensuring our churches are safe environments for everyone. 

"The purpose of the review is to identify where abuse allegations have not been managed appropriately, or safely, or with the needs of the vulnerable at the centre of decision making. 

"The welfare of children or of adults at risk of abuse (vulnerable) is of paramount importance to us in undertaking this review."

Survivors at the heart of PCR2

Here at the Diocese of Blackburn and also nationally, survivors voices are vital to PCR2. This approach was underpinned here with the issuing of what has become known as 'The Blackburn Letter' to our parishes in summer 2019.

Speaking on BBC Radio Lancashire, the Rt Rev Philip North, the Bishop of Burnley said: “There is no such thing as (what is often described as) ‘historic abuse’. If you are a survivor … even if the episode happened 20 or 30 years ago the trauma is still real; but if we don’t listen to those voices, we are re-abusing.

"It is a fact that healing for survivors of abuse can only truly begin when we are not afraid to bring the shadows into the light and try to see through God’s merciful eyes."

Survivors' Care Strategy

If you wish to give feedback on your experience you can contact the Independent Reviewer, Claire McEnery, on

Core Documents for PCR2 

(All of these downloadable documents have also been sent via email to parishes with the Bishop's letter)

Further advice and resources for parishes 

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Parishes may have further questions about the PCR2 process that aren't covered by the information we have provided alongside the Bishop's letter.

If that is the case, then your first port of call should be these Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) as you may find the answer you are looking for here ... 

  • The Church of England's national safeguarding team's FAQs about PCR2 which will be updated regularly ...
  • ...and this page on our website has further FAQs compiled by this Diocese. This page will also be updated regularly. 

Articles for parish use 

As well as this regularly updated website page on PCR2 which is a 'one stop shop' for everything you need, there will be regular updates on PCR2 for parishes in a number of ways.

Below are number of articles parishes can use in their local communications, some of which require adding local links within the text (where shown) to complete them ...

Remember too that general communications advice is always available 24/7 on the communications resources area of this website. 

Further reading: useful background information

All of the material in this section is specifically designed to be available for parishes to read and can also be downloaded for use in local parish communications ...

(More articles and website links will be added here over time.)

General advice and contact details 

In addition to this dedicated PCR2 'one stop shop' page the safeguarding team for this Diocese has its own set of pages on this website which can be explored by starting here and then navigating further using the menu on the right of the page you land on. 

Meanwhile, anyone wanting further information, or to make disclosures of church-related abuse, can make direct contact as follows:

Diocesan Safeguarding Team

Recognising this may not feel safe for those with a direct experience of abuse from within the Church, if you would prefer to speak to someone else in the first instance contact:

Anyone can use these additional routes to provide information or to raise concerns regarding abuse within the Church of England context; whether they are reporting issues relating to children, adults or seeking to whistleblow about poor safeguarding practice.

Your concerns will always be taken seriously.

Media enquiries

Finally, please direct any media enquiries you may receive about the Past Cases Review 2 to Nick Clarke, Diocesan Communications Support: 07779 780030 or email:


Nick Clarke; page updated July 2020