22. THE COLLEGE OF MANCHESTER
The parish church of Manchester was incorporated in 1421 at the instance of Thomas la
Warre, its rector and last lord of the manor of his
name, who endowed the college with certain
lands and the advowson of the church. The
royal licence was given on 22 May in that
year. (fn. 10)
The college was to consist of nine chaplains:
a master or warden, and eight fellows with other
ministers (fn. 11) who were to celebrate for the healthful state of the king, Bishop Langley (head of the
founder's feoffees) and La Warre while they
lived and for their souls after death, as well as for
the souls of the parishioners and of all the faithful departed.
About the time of the outbreak of the Pilgrimage of Grace a correspondent of Lord
Darcy wrote that 'This week past, Manchester
College should have been pulled down and there
would have been a rising, but the Commissioners
recoiled.' (fn. 12) This must surely have been a false
alarm, for the commissioners had no power to
deal with the colleges.
The college was, however, dissolved in 1547,
but refounded by Queen Mary. The ancient
common seal of the college, an impression of
which is appended to the foundation deed of
St. George's Gild in the collegiate church,
represented the Assumption of the Virgin; at
the base the Grelley and La Warre shields.
SIGILLVM : COMMVNE : COLLEGII : BEATE :
MARIE : DE : MAMCESTR : (fn. 13)
||S. Hibbert-Ware, Hist. of the foundations of Manchester, iv, 145. Further details will be found in
the account of the church.
||Ibid. 163. From the founder's letter presenting the first warden, we learn that the 'other ministers' were from the first four clerks and six choristers
(ibid. 173). In 1546 two of the priest fellows
served the parochial cure, the rest 'kept the choir;'
Lancs. Chantries, 8.
L. and P. Hen. VIII, xi, 635.
Lancs. Chantries, 29.