A Guide to Ledbury, Herefordshire

by E. Freeman (1892)

Transcriptions by Rosemary Lockie, © Copyright 2003


Dedicated to St. Michael and All Angels, is a spacious and handsome edifice. It was founded previously to the 20th William I., 1086 (for mention is made in a return of the manor of Ledbury in Domesday book, of a priest being established there), and exhibits beautiful examples of pure Norman, Early English, Decorated and Perpendicular styles of architecture. The west front has a curious Norman doorway, having semi-circular mouldings ornamented with “zigzag”, and resting on three pillars on each side, having capitals ornamented with masks and foliage. The north porch is a fine specimen of Early English work. In 1879 the doors at this entrance were planed and worked to a smooth surface, when the workmen found several slugs and bullets imbedded in the wood; there is little doubt these doors were in existence at the time of the Battle of Ledbury, April 22nd, 1645. The building consists of a nave, chancel, two aisles, with Chapels dedicated to St. Catherine and St. Anne, a gallery in the north aisle, and an organ. It will seat about 900 persons. The west gallery, an unsightly structure of the last century, was removed at the time of the restoration in 1876. The tower, which is detached from the Church, is in the Early English style, and is surmounted by a finely propor-

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tioned spire, built in 1733. There are eight bells and a clock (without dial). The clock chimes at 3, 6, 9, and 12 o'clock. Over the Altar is a painting of “The Lord's Supper”, after Leonardo de Vinci, painted by the late Thomas Ballard, of Ledbury. The pulpit, reading-desk and altar-rails were carved by the late Rev. J. Jackson, a former Rector, and dedicated to the Church, in memory of his only son, who died in the year 1873: they are objects of great beauty and interest, and valuable monuments of his taste, skill, and industry. At the east end of the south aisle is a painted glass window representing in large figures, “Faith, Hope, and Charity”. It is taken from a design of Sir Joshua Reynolds in 1830 at the cost of the late Mrs. Saunders. A handsome window has been placed over the west doorway of the Church, to the memory of the late Thomas Webb, Esq., and Ann his wife (a member of the Thackwell family, of Berrow Court, Worcestershire), who died at Ledbury, August 14th, 1881, aged 102 years.

St. Catherine's Chapel adjoining the Church on the north side, is in the Decorated style of architecture, and is now used as a baptistry. A female, of the name of Catherine Audley, a religious woman, in the reign of Edward II., who had a maid called Mabel, but not being fixed in any settled place, had a revelation, that she should not set up her rest till she came to a town, where the bells should ring of themselves. She and her maid coming near Ledbury, heard the bells ring, though the Church doors were shut and no ringers there. Here then she determined to spend the remainder of her days, and built an hermitage, living on herbs and sometimes on milk, which she sent for, to a place called the Hazel. There is a piece of land near Ledbury, called St. Catherine's Acre, and another near it called Mabel's Furlong. The King in consideration of her birth and piety - or both - granted her an annuity of £30. She was probably a member of the great Audley family, for by the King's writ, the annuity was chargeable on certain lands in Monnington and Dilwyn (Herefordshire), with both of which parishes, the Audleys were connected. The poet Wordsworth alludes to this legend in the following-

“When human touch, as monkish books attest,
Nor was applied, nor could be, Ledbury bells
Broke forth in concert flung adown the dells,
And upward high as Malvern's cloudy crest,
Sweet tones, and caught by a noble lady blest
To rapture. Mabel listened at the side
Of her loved mistress: soon the music died,
And Catherine said, here, I set up my rest.
Warned in a dream the wanderer long had sought
A home, that by such miracle of sound
Must be revealed. She heard it now, or felt
The deep, deep joy of a confiding thought,
And there a saintly anchoress she dwelt,
Till she exchanged for heaven that happy ground.”

The Churchyard is large and very picturesque. It contains many monuments in a good state of preservation, some of which are quaint and interesting. Near the south door is a gravestone with the following inscription

In memory of
John Heath, cooper of this
Town, never known to be paralised
by any man in his profession.
He had a natural genius in many
other things but leaveing this
sinfull world in hopes of a better
He died October 21st 1772 aged 54
When young he was beloved,
by all that knew him
But growing old and poor
They all forsook him,
But God his father and his friend
Did still regard him to his end.

The following is an extract from a paper on the Architecture of Ledbury Church by the late Rev. J. Jackson, M.A., read before the British Archæological Association, August 24th, 1881:-

“Whether any remains exist of a church earlier than the

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Conquest is doubtful; but if there be any, the only fragment now remaining is the hagioscope, on the north side of the chancel, which until the year 1875 was blocked up with stone walling, plastered over and hid from sight. The rudely constructed arch, built of stone from a neighbouring quarry, might lead to the conclusion that it was Saxon work; but on this point, on which many opinions have been expressed, I leave you to draw your own conclusion. I am in some degree confirmed in my opinion, that this is of Pre-Norman date, from the fact that on the north side of the hagioscope, in what is known as St. Mary's Chapel,[2] or Chantry, a Norman piscina was introduced without interfering with the hagioscope on the south side of the wall. There is, however, no doubt that shortly after the Conquest a Norman church existed of the length of the present one, viz., nave 97 feet, and chancel 90 feet, with side aisles of narrow width and chapels or chantries at the east end of those aisles, with their altars, aumbries, and piscinas, the latter of which are still remaining. The Norman doorway with its rich mouldings, not unlike in character to the chancel-arch of Kilpeck Church in this county, the outline of two Norman windows, and the Norman buttresses with their conical heads, show this at the west end; and the Norman arches of the chancel, the remains of two Norman windows, the two perfect ones in the north and south walls, and the buttresses at the east end show unmistakeably that such Church existed. All traces of Norman work in the east wall have disappeared, and a perpendicular window takes the place of the Norman. An examination of the outside of the west end of the south aisle, just under the window, shews the foundation of an aisle about 8 feet in width, similar to the south aisle of the Priory Church of Great

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Malvern; and the dripstone in the north and south walls of the chancel, underneath the circular clerestory windows, shews that those windows during the existence of that church were in the outer walls of that building. In the north aisle is a Norman pillar and capital, from which sprang the arch which separated the aisle from the chapel or chantry; and at the west end of the dripstone, on the north side of the chapel, is a portion of stone cut out at an angle, which shews the pitch of the roof of that aisle and chapel, which was evidently what is called a “lean to roof”. From the grotesque carving of that date (forming, no doubt, some of the corbels), which has been fortunately preserved and inserted in the eastern ends of the north and south arcades, there is sufficient to shew that the Norman church was of no mean pretensions. The pillars of the Norman arches on the north and south sides of the chancel (square to a certain height and then circular) are singular specimens of Norman architecture. The chapels on the north and south sides would appear to have had a stone screen to separate them from the chancel, for on the east end of the walls, under the capitals, are stones with mouldings and jambs, which have formed one side of doorways to communicate with the chapels and chancel. The chancel-arch is one of the obtuse pointed or drop arches, which are occasionally found in Norman work of the latter part of the twelfth century. The peculiarity thereof is that the east and west sides do not correspond in their character and mouldings. The next important change which we find is the removal of the Norman side aisles. In the early part of the thirteenth century, when the Early English style of architecture changed the form of the windows, and elongated ones with tracery took the place of the Norman, the principal portion of the south aisle was built of a greater width than its predecessor, and appears to have been built at three different periods. The

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easternmost part[3] (known as St. Anne's Chapel or Chantry), as appears from a straight joint in the wall with its three windows and doorway being the most ancient, then the aisle with its four windows to another straight joint in the wall, where it probably ended. From that point westward, a totally different style prevails in the formation of the buttresses, string-course, and inner mouldings of the window jambs, the concave being changed to convex in the heads of the south-west and west window. Previous to 1820, the tracery in these was perpendicular with horizontal transoms. Unfortunately, the change made at that time is a poor imitation of the Early English window at the west end of the north aisle, with which it was intended to correspond. At a later period, while the Early English style prevailed, the north aisle was built, with its beautiful tall windows at the east and west ends. The porch, or parvise, appears to have been added about that period, as the same character prevails in the outer arch, in the arch of the doorway, and the windows of the north side of the aisle, which have this peculiarity, that the heads are not curved to merge gradually into the jambs, but spring from a point; and the heads take a shape approximating to an equilateral triangle.

In the porch is a lower chamber formerly connected by a staircase with two upper chambers for the use of the Sacristan. One of them has a fire-place, piscina of early English date, and an aumbry. The proportion of the rooms have however been entirely destroyed by a fine specimen (I hope the last of its kind) of what is called “Churchwardens' Architecture”. When about 1852, the ceiling of the lower chamber was raised,

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thereby interfering with the windows of the upper chamber, as well as with one or it may be a doorway in the north wall of the Church. Up to this date the north and south arcades of the nave remained in their Norman shape. In the early part of the fourteenth century, when the decorated style was introduced, the south arcade was taken down, and the present pillars and arches were built, corresponding in form and moulding with those at Sandhurst Church, Kent (A.D. 1350), viz., a plain octagonal pier, with a simple capital and moulded abacus. I am confirmed in my statement by the fact that when in consequence of their deflection from the perpendicular, two or three of the present arches were taken down and rebuilt, about the year 1871, several Norman corbels, like to those still remaining in the south wall of the chancel, and portions of clerestory windows were found in the walls between the arches. At this same period, when the ball-flower, the ornament most peculiarly characteristic of the decorated style of architecture prevailed, the beautiful chapel known as St. Catherine's, at the north side of the north aisle, was built. The wall was pierced, and an archway was made to connect the aisle and chapel; the original window over the archway was shortened and left as it appears at the present time; but until a few years ago it was walled up and plastered over. It is probable that this chapel was used as the Chapter House for the College founded by Bishop Treffnant in 1401.

The last change which took place in the architecture of the church was the substitution of the present north arcade for the Norman, A.D. 1619, as appears by a date on the wall-plate of the roof. The meagre capitals, with the lozenge-shaped pillars, shew that Gothic architecture was then on the decline. The workmen who built those arches and columns appear to have had one or two motives for their work - either to be at as little

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trouble as possible, or to preserve all that remained of the Norman arcade - for in the easternmost pillar some portion of the moulding of a Norman capital is visible, and in four of the westernmost arches the Norman hood-mouldings were used, which give them their irregular and zigzag appearance, while the two easternmost arches have mouldings of a different character.

The tower with its spire now claims our attention. This is and always has been, separated from the church. The lower portions thereof, up to and including the lower tier of windows, are of strictly early English character. I recollect seeing a drawing, some years ago, where a “shingle” spire was placed immediately over the lower tier of windows without any battlements. In the year 1733, July 18th, the spirit moved the good people of Ledbury to take down the shingle spire, for in the churchwardens' books for that year it is recorded: “We whose names are hereunto subscribed do hereby agree that the tower shall be raised 6 foot higher than what is necessary, and the spire 16 foot, and to raise the bells, which shall not be at the parish charge, but by subscription, provided the “brief” does not answer the same”. The subscription seems to have been abandoned, for on February 20th, 1734, there is an entry as follows:- At a vestry meeting it was ordered and agreed that the churchwarden be allowed to make a book (rate) towards paying the debt that was borrowed for building the spire and going forward with the work, and defraying his charges by a book not exceeding “fourty months”; and also order the churchwardens to do their endeavour to borrow money to pay what money was borrowed towards building the steeple”. They raised the tower one storey, in which the bells were re-hung, and built the present spire, not 16 feet, but 100 feet high, which for the time of its erection is a passable work, though the Corinthian cornice underneath the battlements and

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the upper windows in the tower, ill accord with the graceful outline of the early English windows and doorway beneath. The height of the present tower and spire is 202 feet. The spire has been twice struck by lightning, it was repaired in the year 1878. [NOTE.- Bosbury, Garway, Holmer, Pembridge, Richard's Castle, and Yarpole churches, in this county, all have detached towers.] Towers were occasionally used up to the fourteenth century as parochial fortresses, to which in time of sudden and unforseen danger the inhabitants of the parish resorted for awhile.- “Bloxam”.

In the year 1771 the mutilation of the timber roofs commenced. A resolution in the churchwarden's book is as follows “1771, September 5th, Mr. Bridg, the present churchwarding shall seele the midle ile of the Church.” No doubt the men of that generation were so well pleased with their performance that the north and south aisles were also ceiled, and in carrying out this unfortunate work the mouldings on the timber work and wallplates and the stone cornices were recklessly destroyed. Two of these ceilings have disappeared, and the days of the remaining one let us hope are numbered. The roof of the south aisle, constructed entirely of English oak of massive dimensions, is an exact restitution of the original. On its being repaired (1878), under the superintendence of Mr. Haddon, of Hereford, every feature of the old roof was retained. I have little doubt that the settling of the south wall from the perpendicular took place immediately after it was built, as it was found on careful examination and measurement of the principals of the roof, that they had been fitted to the expanded form of the walls. The panelled roof of St. Ann's Chapel at the end of the south aisle is an exact copy of the original, all old work being carefully retained. All the roofs of the early English character were of very high pitch, towards the end of the fifteenth cen-

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tury they became much lower. Unfortunately the roofs of this church are placed on walls of a much earlier date, and consequently in the nave and north aisle especially, they interfere with the heads of the windows. In the year 1858 a report was made by an eminent architect who pronounced the grand old oak roofs to be decayed, and plans with specifications were given supplanting them by ordinary tie-beam roofs of red deal. Happily these plans were never carried out, and the roofs, so far from being decayed, will last for many ages to come.

The painted glass in the tracery of the east window, some figures in the north window of the chancel, some fragments in the window over the door of St. Catherine's Chapel, which have been collected from other parts of the church and reglazed, are all that is worthy of much notice. The other painted or stained glass is modern.

In one of the windows of the south aisle is a glass sun-dial. There are not many of these in existence, curious in their way, but not to be altogether depended upon for accuracy in denoting time.

Numerous sepulchral memorials are contained in this church; among them are several ancient and curious tombs. There are also a few brasses; in the floor at the south-east corner of the south aisle is one with this quaint inscription :-

“The world's fashion defied,
Our Lord's passion applied,
His bliss only in this descried,
Ould Richard Hayward and died.
An. Dom. 1618.”

In a recess in the north-east window of the north aisle there is a recumbent figure of a female (unknown) which has evidenty been removed from some other part of the church, as the altar tomb on which it is placed is perpendicular work,

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while the dress of the figure is of the time of Edward II. The cushion on which the head reclines being reduced in size would indicate that it had been originally placed elsewhere but removed and fitted to its present position. Some of the shields have on them the arms of the Royal House of England.

Near St. Catherine's Chapel is the figure of a Priest placed upright against a wall. It is probable that this was the lid of a stone coffin, and is a fine and interesting example of the date 1250. “This effigy is in a better state of preservation than we usually find to be the case in effigies of so early a period.”- Bloxam.

On the south side of the chancel against the wall is the effigy of an ecclesiastic with a cushion before him in the attitude of preaching, having a canopy over his head; beneath is a Latin inscription to the memory of Dr. John Hoskins, formerly Vicar of Ledbury, and to his wife Frances, dated 1638.

On the same side of the chancel is an elegant monument, having a canopy supported by three Corinthian columns in front, forming a sort of temple, in which are placed the effigies in alabaster of Edward Skynner, gent., and Elizabeth, his wife, in the dress of their time, kneeling opposite each other; below in alto-relievo, are the figures of five sons and five daughters kneeling. Date 1631.

[NOTE.- Robert Skynner, successively Bishop of Bristol, Oxford, and Worcester, and the late Chief Justice Baron Skynner, were of this family.]

On the north side of the chancel is the effigy of an ecclesiastic similar to that of Dr. Hoskyn's, with a long Latin inscription in memory of Dr. Thomas Thorton who died 1629, Master of Ledbury Hospital, Vice-Chancellor and Professor of Oxford.

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On the same side is a marble monument, by Flaxman, in memory of the late John Miles, Esq., of Underdown.

On the south side of the chancel is a monument of white marble; a recumbent figure of an infant, with two angels guarding the same. It has the following inscription:-

John Hamilton, the beloved infant son of John Martin and
Maria Henrietta, his wife.
Born April 23rd, 1850. Died March 18th, 1851.

This monument is much admired, and was in the Great Exhibition of 1851; was modelled by Mrs. Thornycroft, and sculptured by her husband.

Under the south-west window in south aisle is a fine monument of the Biddulph family, by Westmacott.

In St. Anne's Chapel, against the north wall, is an incised alabaster slab with the outlines of a clerical figure; at the feet is the following inscription:--

Edward Cooper, grave, learned and wise
Archdeacon of Hereford and Canon erst, here lies,
Of Ledburies Hospitall Master in his life;
The poor did p'tect, their land rid from strife
A.D. 1596.
The time will come, that you shall be as I am now.

On the south side of this chapel is an elegant monument, by Westmacott, to the memory of D. Ellis Saunders, Esq.

On the floor near the pulpit is the following inscription:-

Stay reader, here lies the body of
James Bailey late of Ledbury, corvisor,[4]
who departed this life Dec. 13th 1674, aged 100 years and
8 months.

[NOTE.- Post-Reformation effigies, whether sculptured or of incised brass or incised slabs of alabaster, are comparatively rare

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under the grade of Dean, the two examples noticed in the chancel and the slab of Archdeacon Cooper are good examples of the outward apparel of the clergy of this period.] - Bloxam's “Gothic Architecture”.

The parish registers commence with the year 1556, and are unusually well preserved. The following extracts were furnished by the late Rev. J. Jackson, M.A., and were published in the Hereford Times by Mr Frank Parr, in 1884:-


A.D. 1583.- Jane Badland (beinge murthered at Donnington by one William Farr, of Estnor) was buried the xxvth day of February, 1583, which said Farr was hanged on the Gallows Hill, the xvi day of Marche next following for the same fact.

A.D. 1590.- Ann Wells a poore wanderinge woman being frozen to death at peese bridge in the grete snowe and cruell cold was buried xvith day of December.

A.D. 1592.- Hugh Davies of Castlemorton one of the keepers in Malvern Chase being slayne with a gunne at Walmswell the xxiind day of June, was the same day brought to Ledbury and there buried the xxivth day of June.

A.D. 1593.- Thomas Barber beinge an excommunicant p--son was put into a grave out of Christian burial, and was not buried the viith day of Aprill.

A.D. 1593.-John Symons als. Black John was buried the viith day of Aprill.

A.D. 1594.- William Jones sometime of Whitney a poore man beinge slayne in the Horselane at Ledbury Fairre uppon the xxist day of this September.

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A.D. 1596.- Aylton Capella, Jone Vove a poore wandering woman diinge at Jack a pleys (Jacob's leys in parish of Aylton) was buried the xiiith day of August.

A.D. 1597.- Owen als. Meredith a wayfaring man, late of Glascombe in Radner sheere died at the hasill end, was buried the xivth day of May.

A.D. 1600.- Evan Priest als. Welche Yeavan de Homend fell out of a withie tree at Prior's Court and died and was buried the xxviith day of Aprill.

A.D. 1601.- Richard Capel of Bosbury, esquier was buried in the chancell at Ledbury the fourth day of May.

A.D. 1602.- Thomas Turner servant unto William Benet gent de Wall hills beinge slayne at the Court of Park uppon Saynt James day was buried the xxviith day of July.

A.D. 1603.- John Williams coreister drank himself deade at Wylliam Hamonds, was buried xxviith day of November.

A.D. 1605.- Nell Beggor an aged p--son was cast into a pitt in the brooke, the viith day of May.

A.D. 1607.- John a Benyon being slayne by one William Hooper in Mobly Furlonge upon the iind day of October was buried the vith day of October.

A.D. 1609.- At this time the Plague began at Wall hills, about 10 persons died and Michaell the son of Francis Hall of Bromiard died of the plague and was buried the xvith day of October, 1610.

A.D. 1611.- Elizabeth Barnard, widow de Flites was buried xxviiith day of April.

A.D. 1635.- John Bide-a-while was buried xviiith day of April.

A.D. 1653.- Margaret Bide-a-while was buried the sixth day of September.

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The following extracts from the book of Churchwarden's Accounts is interesting, as showing the state of education and the spirit of those times:-

A.D. 1686.- May Ffor reparation of the Scallons,[5] timber and sawing 00 18s 06d.

A.D. 1687.- October 22nd paid a distressed minister that preached in prsh church 00 03 06.

A.D. 1690.- To Joane Williams, of Much Marcle, for four thousand and a half of slatt, paid for 68 bags of moss at 2d. per bag.

A.D. 1690.- In this year the five bells were cast into 8.

A.D. 1695, Aprill the 24th.-

Brass Bagge

Wee whose names are hereunto subscribed doo order and

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appoint that bagges be made according to the form above in brass, and that each poor person who shall receive monthly pay, house-rent, or coales shall weare such bagge, and if any poore person shall refuse to weare the same, such person shall immediately be struck out of the parish booke, and be incapable to receive such pay, house-rent, or coales, as they were by virtue of their poverty intituled to before.

Witness our hands, this 24th day of Aprill, 1695.

Antho. Biddulph Benj. Prichard
Charles Cutler Jos. Skynner }
R. Mathews Samuel Hatton } Churchwardens.
Richard Hartland  
William Smith Richard Bibbs,
Edmund Tomlins Overseer.

A.D. 1701.- Pd. for a consolation.

A.D. 1711, January 9th.- An order that a rate of three pence per dozen for all sparrows yt shall be taken and killed between this and the first of August following in this - parish, be allowed by the Churchwardens.

A.D. 1711.- Paid for a Hoops head[6] and a fitchetts head 2s. 3d.

A.D. 1715, October 20th.- Paid for ringing for the news of “Rowting the Rebels.”

A.D. 1730-33.- In these years a very minute account is kept of the cost of building the spire of the church. The stone wherewith it was built was brought from Mainstone, in the parish of Munsley, and Hazards, in the parish of Dymock. Stone masons were paid one shilling per day. The total cost appears to have been £846 10s. 0d. The

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weight of the weathercock is 28½lb. Wilkinson, mason, who built the Worcester spire, was the builder.

A.D. 1746.- The posts in the Church Lane were erected to prevent its being used for horses or carriages, as appears from the following resolution, which takes the form (in language at least) of a Royal Proclamation:- “ We, whose names are hereunto subscribed, at a vestry meeting held the year and day above dated, do agree and order our present Surveyors of Highways in our town and 'Burrow' of Ledbury, that they the said Surveyors or one of them, shall out of hand erect a large and substantial post in the middle of the west end of a lane, called the Church Lane, within our said Burrow, and also 'tis agreed and ordered at the same time and place, that our Common Cryer, shall upon Tuesday next, about the middle of the day, give publick notice all over our said town, that whosoever shall for the future drive or bring a horse or horses drawing any carriage within the post or posts, erected at either end of the Church Lane, or suffer any such horse or horses so to stand within the said posts as to obstruct the free passage thereof, will be sued for the same, as witness our hands the day and year above dated.”

Robert Biddulph.
John Skipp.
Richard Hullings.
George Elton.
Edward Hawkins, and others.

The schoolmaster does not appear to have been abroad at this period, or he taught phonetic spelling, which has some advocates at the present time.

A.D. 1760.- Joseph Bond and Ralph Brown, churchwardens paid for a “Point of Oyle”.

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A.D. 1763.- Thomas Bailiss and John Tully, paid for a “Bizzam for the steeple”.

A.D. 1764.- John Bennett and Fred Wykes paid for “Righting paper”.

1775.- William Coldwell and Lancelot Carwardine pd. on Fower Breefs.

1781.- John Drew, churchwarden, paid March 9th “doar lock to Bellfree”.


1.-Thomas Cocks of Castleditch, Esqr 1690
2.-William Winter of Dymock Esqr 1690.
3.-God save Queen and Church { Richard Stone
Churchwarden 1706.
4.-Prosperity to this Town A.R. 1723.
5.-Revd. Geo. Watts, vicar, Timothy Spencer, churchwarden
We praise Thee O God, Mears, London fecit 1817.
6.-ABRA RVDHALL made vs eight in year 1690.
7.-J.H. Ch. W.P. Prosper they to this place A.R. 1699.
Tenor Bell  Let love and peace in you abound
When you hear my harmonious sound. } A.R. 1736
Jno George
Thomas Bosward } Churchwardens.

A.D. 1736.- About this time a vial of parochial wrath was poured on a self-willed churchwarden, as appears from the following extract from the parish books:-

“Whereas John George one of the churchwardens of this parish has wilfully and unadvisedly against the consent of the parish, signified to him at a parish meeting, fixed up the Bells in the new steeple, before it was finished

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whereby considerable damage has already happened: the greatest bell being since broke.

Therefore it is agreed that in case the said John George, does not at his own proper cost, make the said Bell as good and useful as formerly, We will prosecute him by what method shall be thought most advisable in order to recover damages, which are or shall be sustained by the parish on that behalf.”

The Tenor or greatest bell was recast at this time with extra metal at a cost of £43 17s. 7d. It weighs 1ton 3cwt. 2qrs. 17lbs.

A.D. 1602.- King James 1st King of Scotland, was at the High Cross in Ledbury, proclaimed King of England, Scotland, France and Ireland by Charels Langford D.D., Justice of the peace and Dean of Hereford, and John Clinton of Castle Dytche, Eastnor, esquier.

A.D. 1660.- Paid the trumpeters when they proclaimed King Charles II., Ten shillings and eightpence.

A.D. 1593 Mm.- That whereas I William Davis, clark, Vicar of Ledbury, according to the form of the statute did heretofore give licence under my handwriting unto Rd Skynner of the Birtons, for the eating of flesh in this forbidden tyme of Lent, during the tyme of his sickness, and for that it further appeareth unto me, that his said sickness have already continued for eight days. I do therefore again licence him again to eat as afforesaid for and during the tyme of this sickness in the presence of John Meeke one of the churchwardens, here dated 12th March 1593 for me

W. Davis, Vicar.
John Meeke.

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6 Elizabeth Chapter 5.- “Every person, Vicar or Curate shall not take above 4d. for entering into the Church book, the licence for sick persons to eat flesh &c., nor above 2d. for writing a testimonial of any servant changing from one place to another”.

[1] Rector - The Rev. Prebendary Maddison-Green, M.A., R. D. The Rectory is on the West side of the Churchyard.
[2] This Chapel has always been known as the Chapel of the Blessed Trinity, and the Editor of “The Ledbury Guide for 1831” says that he was unable to determine the position of St. Mary's Chantry. There is a piscina and aumbry in the room over the porch, and probably this is St. Mary's Chantry.
[3] In the British Museum there is a deed, dated A.D. 1372, and confirmed by Edward III., relating to the endowment of this chantry by Roger Hunt and Alice Pauncefote. In Browne-Willis's “Mitred Abbeys” (1719) is an account of pensions paid anno 1553 to Incumbents of Chantries, colleges, and Fraternities. Of Ledbury, are the following:- “To John Porter, alias Potter, Incumbent of St. Mary's Chantry, £6 0 0. To Griffin Fowler, of St. Anne's Chantry, £5 0 0. To Richard Wheeler, of Trinity Chantry, £5 0 0.”
[4] A Shoemaker.
[5] The Lych-gate or Scallenge.
[6] Hoop or Bull-finch, fitchet or foumart

OCR/transcript by Rosemary Lockie in September 2003.

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