As a result of difficulty meeting energy efficiency through fabric alteration, historic churches must focus on heating systems and operational strategy as key to reducing carbon emissions. Strategies can be defined as local or central heating. Local heating strives to heat occupants, while central heating aims to heat the building fabric and therefore the occupants. Each strategy requires a different approach to control and technology in response to priorities such as conservation, comfort and cost. This paper reviews current and emerging technologies in the context of church heating. The fuel source, heat generation technology and heat emitter are arranged in a matrix, with pairwise analysis undertaken to create weightings for each assessment criteria. The process of constructing the matrix and undertaking pairwise analysis using personas is discussed. The result is a ranking of fuels and technologies appropriate to the main priorities and individual preferences. Some desirable technologies are inherently more damaging to historic church environments due to invasive installation. These technologies score poorly when the aim is fabric preservation. Greener fuels, like biomass, may rank lower than fossil fuels, due in part to operational differences.