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

The place: SHEFFIELD.     Church dedication: SAINT PETER.     Church type: Vicarage in charge.

Area, 22,830 acres. Strafforth and Tickhill wapentake, S. D. -Population, 91,692 *1; Church-room, 1,900 *2; Net value, £535, and three Assistants, £750. -The Church of Sheffield was probably founded by the first William de Lovetot, in the reign of Henry I. The second William de Lovetot gave the Church and one-third of the tithes to the Priory of Worksop, and also gave to the Monks of that house the power of nominating a Vicar, but no endowment of the Vicarage can be found, which is accounted for by the fact that the Priory had obtained a bull from Pope Alexander III. in 1161, which precluded the Archbishop of York from the power of compelling an Ordination to several of their Livings. The grant of this William de Lovetot was confirmed by two charters, one of Henry III., and the other by Maud de Lovetot.

The Priory allowed the Vicar the tithe of wool and lamb, oblations, Easter book, and minute and privy tithes, paying thereout 4s. to the Archbishop for Synodals, and 7s. 6d. to the Archdeacon for Procurations.

The other two-thirds of the tithes were given (probably by the Countess Judith, the Conqueror's niece) to the Abbey of St. Wandrille, near Rouen, and that foreign house enjoyed it until the seizure of its English possession by the Crown, when Richard II. granted its interest in Sheffield to the Carthusian Monastery, St. Ann, Coventry. At the Dissolution, the two-thirds of the tithes were granted to the Countess of Northumberland, and descended to the Earls of Shrewsbury, and from them to the Dukes of Norfolk. The other third, together with the Advowson, were conveyed to the Jessops and the Gells. The patronage is exercised alternately by the Lawsons and the Gells.

Patrons, P. Gell, Esq. and Mrs. B. Lawson, appointed as trustees by twelve laymen.

Impropriator, the Duke of Norfolk.

In Pope Nicholas's taxation, the two-thirds of the tithes are valued with the Church of Ecclesfield, and the portion of the Prior of Worksop is valued at £10 per annum ; in the King's books, at £12. 15s. 2d., after deducting for Synodals 4s., and for Procurations, 7s. 6d.; and in the Parliamentary Survey, vol. xviii. page 440, it is stated: " Vicarage, £22 per annum." (Archbishop Sharp considered the Vicarage to be worth about £80 per annum) ; and it is stated, " The Rectory impropriate in the hands of the Countess of Kent is of great value. There be three assistant ministers belonging the said Church, who have for their salaries forty marks apiece, issuing out of certain lands given to that use."

In 1786, the Vicar was enabled by Act of Parliament to grant building leases.

Mr. Wilkinson, the late Vicar, purchased of the Duke of Norfolk two-thirds of the small tithes, and annexed them to the Vicarage, charged with a payment of £10 per annum to the infirmary for ever.

The Church was repaired in 1806. The organ was erected as early as the reign of Queen Elizabeth. The duty is taken week by week by the Vicar and his three assistants.

" The Vicarage is endowed only with the third part of the tithe of wool and lamb, of mortuaries, and of the other small tithes of the parish ; only in the Prior Row and Stocks Farm, the whole small tithe and mortuaries are due to the Church. The Chapel of Attercliffe was founded in 1629 by joint contribution. The minister hath £40 per annum, and £4 a year allowed for a house. A library is fitted up in the vestry of Sheffield Church, and a small collection of books made." Signed, " Nath. Drake, Vic." -Notitia Parochialis, No. 1,014.

5th November 1768, faculty to remove the situation of the font, and make certain alterations in the Church.

15th April 1802, ditto to re-pew the Church, and to take down the galleries, and erect new ones.

23rd September 1805, and 21st March 1806, confirmation of allotments of pews.

Inclosure Acts were passed 28th Geo. III. (Brightside) ; 31st Geo. III. (Manor) ; and 50th Geo. III. (Attercliffe with Darnall) ; and Acts were passed 26th Geo. III., to enable the Vicar to grant leases; 11th Geo. I. c. 33, Earl of Shrewsbury's Hospital; and 13th Geo. II. c. 12, for making the Chapel, by R. Downes and others, a perpetual Cure and Benefice.

Mr. Hunter minutely describes the arms and inscriptions, and complains heavily of the sweeping removals of brasses and monuments within a very recent period. He also gives a catalogue of the Vicars.

The glebe house is fit for residence.

The Register Books commence in 1560.


It appears, that previous to the Reformation three priests were supported by voluntary contributions to assist the Vicar, being the only instance of that kind within the diocese, except in the Church of Laughton en le Morthen. These contributions failed altogether about 30th Henry VIII. The priests were, however, supported out of the rents of certain lands given for public purposes until the 1st Edward VI., when the Commissioners for suppressing Charities visited Sheffield, and they, choosing to consider the priests as chantry priests, seized upon the lands from which their income was derived. Queen Mary restored the lands, and incorporated the inhabitants and burgesses of Sheffield by the name of the Twelve Capital Burgesses and Commonalty of the town and parish of Sheffield. They have power to acquire lands, plead and be impleaded, and have a common seal, and fill up the vacancies which may occur by death or removal. The trusts are as follows:-

I. To find and maintain three Chaplains or Presbyters, to celebrate divine office in the parish Church of Sheffield, as helpers to the Vicar.

II. To repair the parish Church, bridges, and common ways.

III. To assist the poor inhabitants.

At the time of the Parliamentary Survey, the stipends of the ministers were £40 each per annum. They are now £250 each per annum. The income of the trust in 1828 was upwards of £1,400 per annum.

Mr. Hunter gives a full account of the trust, and also copies of the petition to Queen Mary, and the letters patent granted in consequence thereof ; and the particulars of the income will be found in the 19th Report of the Charity Commissioners, page 624.

Town Burgesses' trust and Church Burgesses' trust. Free Grammar School, founded by charter 2nd Jac. I. for the instruction of boys in English grammar. Endowment: rent of 169x. 1r. 2r. of land, and £300 on mortgage. Twenty-five free scholars.

Ann Swan's gift, in 1783. 10s. 6d. for a sermon, and 9s. 6d. to the poor.

under the management of the Cutler's company.

Thomas Hanbey's charity, by will, dated 10th January 1782. Dividends on £8,000 three per cent. consols. £83. 10s. per annum is applied towards supporting a charity school ; 20s. a year to the minister for a sermon ; 10s. to the clerk and sexton ; £5 a year for a dinner ; residue for poor men and women of the age of fifty years or upwards, 20s. each and clothing.

Francis Sitwell's charity, in 1741. £400 to be lent out, in sums not exceeding £5 each, to necessitous persons, without interest. The Commissioners could not learn any thing respecting this charity.

Joseph Hudson's charity. £8. 10s. per annum to poor file-strikers.

The Earl of Shrewsbury's Hospital, founded in 1673, for ten poor men and ten poor women, and regulated by Acts of Parliament, 11th Geo. I. and 10th Geo. III. The Duke of Norfolk being a special visitor, the Commissioners could not inquire into this charity.

Francis Barlow's gift, by will, dated 6th December 1688, and codicil, dated 2nd March 1689. Rent-charge of £6 per annum, to be distributed annually amongst the most needy decayed tradesmen of the town.

Thomas Hollis's Hospital, founded by deed, dated 27th August 1703. Endowment : 191a. 0r. 5p. of land, several houses, dividends of £2,000 old south sea stock, £1,100 three per cent. consols, and four navigation shares. The income is applied to the support of an hospital for sixteen poor persons, a school, and the support of several dissenting ministers.

Lydia Wright's charity, in 1702. Interest of £50 for the benefit of poor dissenters.

Margaret Bamforth's charity. Rent of 4a. in. 36r. of land, distributed among the poor.

William Birley's charity, by will, dated 10th June 1715, for teaching writing and arithmetic, for supporting a minister to perform divine service in the Hospital Chapel, or other place regularly appointed, and for old and indigent tradesmen, or their widows. Endowment : 230a. 2r. 23p., and forty-eight acres of wood land, two houses, and £241. 14s. 3d. three per cent. consols. There are about forty free scholars.

Elizabeth Parkin's gift, by will, dated 18th January 1763. Dividends of £762. 15s. 8d. three per cent. reduced, distributed yearly among the poor.

Richard Boughton's gift, in 1699. Rent-charge of £5 a year, distributed among decayed cutlers and scissor-smiths.

George Younge's charity, by will, dated 28th August 1766. Interest of £62 for poor housekeepers not receiving parochial relief.

John Kirkby's charity, by will, dated 31st July 1779. Dividends of £750 three per cent. consols, paid in pensions to five poor women.

Mary Parsons's charity, by will, dated 5th May 1815. Dividends of £1,528. 6s. new four per cents. £2 per annum for a sermon on St. John's day, in the parish Church, or some Protestant Chapel of Ease, to be preached by the Rev. Matthew Preston, who should have power to nominate a successor for the like purpose. Residue to be given in sums of £1 each to old and infirm silversmiths in the town and parish of Sheffield who should have served their apprenticeships, and regularly worked there in the business.


Grimesthorpe School, and Donations for Education. In 1762, a school was built by subscription on ground given by the Duke of Norfolk. The master has the benefit of the following donations :-

Donation of £40, given by sundry persons in 1753. Principal taken by the overseers, who pay out of the rates £2 a year for the education of six poor children nominated by them.

John Mirfield's donation, by will, dated 14th February 1785. Rent of tenement, for teaching six poor children to read.

Elizabeth Fell's gift, by will, proved 14th February 1795. Interest of £300 for the support of a Sunday school, and interest of £250 for poor widows, widowers, and old housekeepers, at the workhouse yearly, on St. John's day, At the time of the Report, the inhabitants and Mrs. Fell's executors were engaged in a chancery suit, which appeared to the Commissioners to be a party proceeding.

Fulwood School, founded by John Fox in 1720, and augmented by the will of William Roncksley, dated 9th October 1723. Endowed with four acres of land. Eighteen free scholars taught reading and writing.


The Crookside School, founded by William Roncksley, by will, dated 29th October 1723. Endowment : seven cottages, let at the time of the Report for £22. 7s. 6d. per annum. Thirty free scholars taught to read.

Upper Heely School, augmented by the will of Thomas Chapman, dated 5th June 1801. Endowment : certain small gardens, let for £10. 8s. per annum, and dividends of £250 three per cent. consols. About eighteen free scholars are paid for out of the income. -Vide 19th Report, page 576.

CHAPEL IN THE CASTLE. -In the Castle of Sheffield was a Chapel, wherein the Prior and Convent of Worksop were to find two Chaplains to celebrate daily, and also one Clerk to minister in divine offices, together with a chalice, books, lights, vestments, and other ornaments necessary, and to pay one of the said Chaplains five marks per annum. Torre's MS., page 1109.

LECTURESHIP . -A Wednesday evening lecture was voluntarily undertaken in 1815 by the clergy of the town.

A post town.

Torre's MS., page 1109. Abp. Sharp's MS., vol. i. page 263. Bodleian MSS., Nos. 5078 and 5101. Ditto Ashmolean, No. 8518. Hunter's Hallamshire. Bray's Tour, page 245. Gentleman's Magazine, April 1764, page 157, and July, page 329.

*1 Viz. Attercliffe with Darnall, 3,741; Brightside Bierley, 8,968 ; Ecclesall Bierley, 14,279; Nether Hallam, 4,658 ; Sheffield, 59,011 ; and Upper Hallam, 1,035. The parish of Sheffield is partly in the north division of Strafforth and Tickhill wapentake. The Population of Sheffield in 1821 was 65,275 ; consequently it has increased 26,417 persons, of whom 16,874 are in the township of Sheffield. Of the labourers not agricultural in the township of Attercliffe with Darnall, 162 are boatmen and miners; and in the town of Sheffield, upwards of 200 are miners. -In 1834, the Population was returned at 73,672, which is probably exclusive of some of the Chapelries.

*2 In 1818, the Church-room was returned at "about 3,000."

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