Two organisations share responsibility for Thistleton Church
Cottesmore Parochial Church Council
Thistleton Church faced closure in 2016. Like many rural churches, Thistleton was challenged by the demands of maintaining the church in a small communtiy. The congregation was tiny and it was increasingly difficult to find people to serve on the Parochial Church Council (PCC). The sustainable way forward was for Thistleton to merge with another parish and come under the authority of that parish's PCC. Thistleton was part of a benefice of six parishes and we are grateful that one of them, Cottesmore, agreed to a merger. In April 2017 the new parish of Cottesmore with Burley and Thistleton was formed; Thistleton Church became a chapel of ease as parishes can only have one parish church.
Friends of Thistleton Church
Cottesmore PCC has oversight of Thistleton Church but the church is managed on a day to day basis by the Friends of Thistleton Church (FOTC). A condition of the parish merger was that Cottesmore would not be financially responsible for Thistleton Church so FOTC was established to raise funds, look after the building, coordinate volunteers and maintain the building for public benefit. FOTC was established with the common consent of the Thistleon community following public consultation. FOTC is manged by a board of trustees, elected at the Annual General Meeting. They are supported by volunteers, many of whom live in Thistleton although an increasing number of people from nearby villages get involved because they support the aims of FOTC and enjoy participating in activities. FOTC organised events to fund running costs and repairs and applied for grants - to mainly local funders - to raise funds for major repairs. Over a four year period FOTC raised over £50,000 - a not unremarkable feat for a village of just over 100 people. Then, at the end of 2020, grants from the National Lottery Heritage Fund and the Rutland Historic Churches Preservation Trust provided the remaining fiunds needed to repair the roof and complete the first stage of reordering.