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ECCLESIASTICAL HISTORY.

Data from the 'Collectio Rerum Ecclesiasticarum' from the year 1842.

The place: HEPTONSTALL.     Church dedication: ST. THOMAS A BECKETT.

Morley wapentake. -Population, 11,816, vide Halifax *1; Chapel-room, 1,450 *2; Net value, £120.

Patron, the Vicar of Halifax *3.

This is an ancient parochial Chapel or Church within Halifax Vicarage. It was built before 1260.

There was a Chantry at the altar of St. Mary.

The Parliamentary Survey states that there was then no minister, and only forty shillings per annum for maintenance, and recommended Crostone and Heptonstall to be united, and made one parish. -Vol. xviii. page 273.

" The parochial Church of Heptonstall, within the Vicarage of Halifax, is a very large parish, containing in length ten miles, and in breadth ten miles. By reason of cloth making is very populous, having above six hundred families in it, and formerly was endowed with £40 per annum, but, since the Dissolution, is taken from the same parochial Church, so as now remains no ecclesiastical rights, saving Surplice Dues, so called, viz.: marriages, burials, and baptisms, not amounting to above £5 per annum, and £20 per annum lately given by one John Greenwood, of this parish. All our Easter Reckoning, so called, is paid to the Vicar of Halifax, though that the said parishioners of Heptonstall are not within the parish of Halifax, nor pay any thing either to repair their Church or maintain their poor, or give any money or allowance to buy bread or wine for the Sacrament. And whereas the Vicar of Halifax, always beyond the memory of man, hath paid to the minister of Heptonstall £4 a year in consideration of our Easter Reckoning, and the same never denied, but always paid by former Vicars, yet now of late, for several years past, refuses to pay the same, to the great impoverishing of the minister of Heptonstall, so that what remains is only the charity of the people, and grows worse by much, by reason of so many conventicles set up in nooks and corners within the said parish, so that it is too well known to what a low ebb the minister and parish is brought unto. The said Church is so ancient no certain account can be given at present, being long before the Reformation. No library settled in it, nor any tithes, but composition or modus to the Crown. The election of the minister is in the people, and licensed thereto by the Archbishop of York. If timely provision be not some ways made, the present minister (whom we have enjoyed forty years) must come to great want and poverty, and this great parish become a wilderness, and not one so much as to bury our dead. Heptonstall is within the Archdeaconry of York." Signed, " Daniel Toune, Cur." -Notitia Parochialis, No. 748.

Augmented, in 1747, with £200, and in 1780, with £200, both by lot; in 1809, with £200, to meet benefaction of £200 from Mr. Marshall's trustees ; in 1810, with £300 and £300 from the Parliamentary grant, to meet benefactions of £200 from the Hon. and Rev. J. Lumley Saville and others, and £200 from H. Cockcroft, Esq. and others ; in 1812, with £600, and in 1824, with £200, both from the same grant, by lot and in 1825, with £300 from the same grant, to meet benefaction of £200 front the Rev. J. Charnock, the incumbent.

The glebe house is fit for residence.

Mr. Watson, in page 418, gives a catalogue of the Curates. See also Torre's MS.

The Register Books commence in 1593. Marriages take place at Heptonstall.

Charities:
Grammar School, founded by the Rev. Charles Greenwood, by deed, and his will, dated 14th July 1642. About seventeen free scholars in Latin. Income : rent of 34 acres of land and two houses.

Paul Greenwood's gift, by will, dated 4th April 1609. Rent-charge of 20s. a year to the poor of Wadsworth, and 20s. a year to a preacher at Heptonstall, being a Master of Arts.

Richard Naylor's gift, by will, 6th May 1609. Rent-charge of £3. 5s. per annum. One moiety to a preacher at Heptonstall, being a Master of Arts, for a sermon on St. John Baptist's day, and the other moiety (or, in case of there being no such preacher, then the whole) for the maintenance of poor children.

Abraham Wall's gift, by will, dated 13th September 1638. 20s. per annum for Bibles for children ; £4 for teaching poor children of Heptonstall ; and £3 per annum for apprenticing one poor child to a trade in London. In lieu of this, the last-mentioned sum is now expended in teaching poor children to read and write.

John Greenwood's gift, by will, dated in February 1687. 20s. per annum to the Curate for preaching a sermon on the first Wednesday in June, and 20s. per annum for apprenticing poor children.

John Greenwood's gift, by will, dated 13th December 1705. 20s. per annum to the minister for a sermon on the first Wednesday in August, and 20s. to the poor of Stansfield in canvas cloth.

John Greenwood's gift, by deed, dated in March 1814. Rent of 13a. 2r. 23p. of land, applicable to paying a master for teaching four boys and two girls on every Sunday to read, write, and sing ; 5s. to the minister for a sermon on Whitsunday ; £5. 4s. annually for bread every Sunday for twenty-four persons, including the sexton; £1. 1s. to the singers ; residue for repairs, purchasing Bibles, &c. -Vide 18th Report, page 586.

Post town: Halifax.


References:
Whitaker's Loidis et Elmete, page 402. Watson's Halifax, pages 231. 417. History of Halifax, page 271. Abp. Sharp's MS., vol. i. page 189. Torre's MS. page 827.


Notes:
*1 In 1818 it was 12,337.

*2 In 1818 the return was 1,800. 1,031 additional sittings (of which 733 are free) have been procured, towards which the Society made a grant of £1,000.

*3 There have been several disputes here between the Curates and the Vicars about the right of presentation, mortuaries, &c., but the Vicars now present and receive mortuaries. -Watson's Halifax, page 417.


From the original book published by
George Lawton in 1842..
OCR and changes for Web page presentation
by Colin Hinson. © 2013.