Evaluation Toolkit

The Inspired Futures Evaluation Toolkit is designed to give you all the resources and information you need to evaluate your church development project. Effective evaluation is a crucial part of delivering a successful project with lasting outcomes for all involved, and is also an important element of complying with project funding requirements.

The Toolkit has been developed as part of the Inspired Futures Project (funded by the Heritage Lottery Fund and working with 18 churches across Durham and Newcastle Dioceses). However, this resource is intended for anyone developing and managing a church related project. 

Sections 1 and 2 below introduce the Toolkit and the first steps in evaluating your project. The main Toolkit documents and templates can be accessed by clicking on the Contents List headings in Section 3.

The Toolkit has been created by Nicola Bell (nicola@nicolabell.co.uk) who is the evaluation consultant for the Inspired Futures project.



In this Toolkit you will find everything you need to:

  • Measure the success of your church’s Inspired Futures project
  • Make sure your Action Plan stays on track
  • Find out if you need to make any changes to your church’s project
  • Capture any unexpected outcomes of your church’s project
  • Gather evidence to support future planning
  • Gather evidence to support future fundraising applications
  • Gather evidence to support completing the Heritage Lottery Fund’s end-of-project questionnaire

The Toolkit contains:

  • Ideas for planning your project evaluation
  • The data you need to collect for the HLF end-of-project questionnaire
  • Advice on asking good questions
  • Templates of survey forms and comments cards which you can customise for your project
  • Alternatives to surveys
  • Creative and participatory methods of evaluation
  • Focus and discussion groups
  • Using online survey systems such as Survey Monkey
  • What to do with your data once you have collected it
  • Example spreadsheets to collate and analyse your data
  • Analysing data using Survey Monkey
  • Writing up your findings
  • Putting your findings into action

The Contents List in section 3 below has links to all the documents.  You can use the Toolkit online, or print out the sections you want if you prefer a paper copy.



There are some key things you should put in place now, if you haven’t already:

1. Record details of all the volunteers involved in the project – see Volunteers’ Details and Volunteers Demographics

2. Record the number of people visiting your church

3. Record all the events and activities which take place as part of your Inspired Futures project, the number of people who attend and their demographic details where possible – see the example Events Spreadsheet which you can adapt as required

4. Gather feedback from visitors and activity participants – see Evaluating activities, planning outcomes; Methods; Making good surveys; Question templates

5. Please adapt the sample questionnaires and spreadsheets to fit your church’s project – choose your own appropriate questions, etc.

Once these systems are in place, you can start thinking about heritage interpretation and evaluation (Note: we will cover this topic in detail in the February 2017 Inspired Futures workshop to be led by Jo Scott, the Inspired Futures heritage interpretation consultant).

The Inspired Futures team will give all the churches support with evaluating their projects, including the capital works, so please get in touch with us if you need any advice and help with evaluation.


3. TOOLKIT CONTENTS LIST (Click on the heading to access the relevant section) 

1. Evaluating your Inspired Futures project – some basics

2. Data required for the Heritage Lottery Fund questionnaire

3. Evaluating capital works

4. Evaluating heritage interpretation

5. Evaluating activities; planning outcomes

6. Generic Learning Outcomes

7. Evaluation Plan template

8. Methods

9. Making good surveys

10. Question templates

11. Using social media for evaluation

12. About Volunteers

13. Volunteers’ details

14. Volunteers’ demographics

15. Working out socio-economic groups

16. Analysing and reporting

17. Event recording spreadsheet

18. Photo permission form

19. Thinking about Heritage Activity Planning (Jo Scott)

20. Thinking about a Heritage Activity Questionnaire (Jo Scott)

21. Thinking about Interpretive Media (Jo Scott)

22. Heritage Activity and Interpretation Reading List (Jo Scott)

23.  Volunteering Pack (Churches Conservation Trust)