CHURCHGOERS in Tushingham are fighting to stop their vicarage being sold off.
The churches of St Mary, Whitewell, St Michael, Marbury and St Chad, Tushingham are all in the pastoral care of the Rev Stephen Walton, who lives in the parsonage in Marbury.
The vicarage in Whitewell was sold off in the 1960s and the Church of England wants to do the same with the large and valuable Victorian house in Tushingham.
It was rented out until it was damaged by fire six months ago.
Now the repairs are complete, the Church of England wants to sell the house.
Church warden Peter Moore-Dutton said: 'It seems such a shame to lose a possible source of income which would be expensive to replace in the future.'
His family connection with the church goes back to 1892, when his great-grandfather Llewellyn Vawdrey was vicar until 1912.
'The vicarage has been tidied up since the fire and is a good investment,' he said. 'It could realise about £1,000 a month and house prices will continue going up.'
Vice-chair of Whitewell Parochial Church Council, Tim Paul, says people in his area are disappointed the Tushingham Vicarage is set to be sold off.
The Whitewell vicarage was controversially sold for a small fee in the 1960s in a move to turn it into a nursing home - which has since gone in to administration.
When talk of selling Tushingham Vicarage first started in 2005, Mr Paul lodged an appeal to stop it. But in March 2006 he was told his appeal had fallen on stoney ground.
Paul Lewis, the CofE's secretary for pastoral and redundant churches, said 90% of the proceeds of the sale would be used to improve or replace other parsonages and 10% would be offered to the parish for general purposes.
Mr Paul is concerned although the church is legally allowed to plough ahead with the sale, there is a moral duty to take into account the views of local people.
'It's a worrying state of affairs that they won't listen us,' he said. 'Managing the property as a business could bring in much needed income - and there's no going back once it's sold.'
The 'For Sale' signs are to go up outside the vicarage soon.