Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Wolverton's Ecclesiastical History - III Vicars at Holy Trinity

Oliver Ratcliffe, in his History of the Antiquities of the Newport Hundreds, compiled a list of the Vicars of Wolverton, which I reproduce here with one amendment.


1240 Alan
1260 Thomas
1260 William Bullingham
1274 Robert de Buckingham
1298 Ralph de Wolverton
1298 John de Ely
1334 Richard Ordwy
1361 Henry
1361 Adam Vincent de Caldecote
1370 John Waite
1371 John Syward
1390 John Napper
1394 Richard Dey
1404 Thomas Wychewode
1405 Robert Gornesthorpe
1405 John King
1411 Robert Bengrove
1417 William Dalby
1431 Thomas Legeley
1435 Richard Stacey
1438 Simon Fitzralph
1438 Nicholas Pardon
1447 Thomas Spencer
1452 Nicholas Pardon
1452 John Daventre
1457 William Camyle
1477 John Hancock
1517 William Herose
1543 John Rawlinson
1546 George Turner
1587 Ralph Langford
1596 Robert Reynolds
1631 Thomas Pen
1645 Robert Ladbroke
1645 Gilbert Newton B.A.
1660 Robert Bostock B.A.
1661 Robert Duncumbe
1673 Alexander Featherstone M.A .
1684 Joseph Dogget M.A.
1686 Edward Chebsey
1702 Thomas Evans
1720 Edmund Green
1754 Edward Smith MA.
1782 Samuel Hale L.L.B.
1794 Henry Quartley
1838 Henry Reade Quartley M.A.
1856 William Pitt Trevelyan
1871 John Wood M.A.
1895 Francis Edward Rooke 
The amendment to his list is the date of Henry Quartley's incumbency. Samuel Hale died in 1794 and Quartley, who was a nephew of a former Radcliffe Trust estate manager, was appointed thereafter. e was certainly the incumbent in 1797 when he began to make representations to the Trust for a building and repair program. Ratcliffe says that he was also appointed to the living of Stantonbury in 1832, which he was, but this date is shown as his appointment to Wolverton in a history of Holy Trinity, when by this time he was fully entrenched. Quartley died in 1838 and was succeeded by his son, Henry Reade Quartley.

I have also come across some references in the 13th century Wolverton deeds held in the Bodleian Library. These all relate to the the time when William FitzHamon was Baron, so as they are undated, they could relate to any time between 1220 and 1247.

In one deed (No: 49)
William son of Hamon grants and confirms to William Capellanus of Wolverton with 1/2 virgate in Wolverton which Hugh Capellanus once held.
 In another deed (244) he is a witness as William the vicar of Wullverton, and in another (474) the grant of a piece of land is described as between the land of Master William Vicar of Wlverton.

The deeds clearly describe William as Vicar of Wolverton and the first deed identifies a half-virgate of land (15 acres) which was probably assigned to support the vicar.

This would suggest a line of Hugh, followed by William, before Alan becomes the incumbent circa 1240.

For the most part these vicars maintained a living by having a piece of land attached to the church, usually known as glebe land, and through tithes - payment in kind of a fraction of the yield of the peasantry. Some of this was used to maintain the church and support the Priory. After the dissolution of the monasteries these practices continued until the church and rectory came back into the hands of the Longueville family in the 17th century. For about 100 years after that the income of the vicar was a matter of dispute until it was finally put to rest through a court hearing in 1805.

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