The parish of Kirkham

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Victoria County History

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William Farrer & J. Brownbill (editors)

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1912

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143-150

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'The parish of Kirkham', A History of the County of Lancaster: Volume 7 (1912), pp. 143-150. URL: http://british-history.ac.uk/report.aspx?compid=53203 Date accessed: 29 July 2014.


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KIRKHAM

Kirkham; Medlar-With-Wesham; Ribby-With-Wrea; Bryning-With-Kellamergh; Clifton-With-Salwick; Newton-With-Scales; Freckleton; Warton; Westby-With-Plumptons; Weeton-With-Preese; Treales, Roseacre And Wharles; Greenhalgh-With-Thistleton; Little Eccleston-With-Larbreck; Singleton; Hambleton; Goosnargh; Whittingham;

In addition to the township which affords a name to the whole, the parish of Kirkham contains thirteen others extending north from the Ribble to the Wyre, a distance of 8 miles, one on the further side of the latter river, and the two townships of Goosnargh and Whittingham, to the east, quite detached from the main part, Newsham again being a detached hamlet of Goosnargh. The area of Kirkham proper is 33,564½ acres, and of Goosnargh chapelry 11,864, making a total of 45,428½ acres, including 2,788 acres of tidal water. The population in 1901 was 15,465. (fn. 1)


KIRKHAM AND LYTHAM

KIRKHAM AND LYTHAM

There are indications in addition to the name to show that Kirkham was the ecclesiastical head of the district. Thus, after other parishes had been cut off, the detached fragments of Goosnargh remained subject to Kirkham; and in early times the rectors and vicars seem to have been also usually deans of Amounderness. Otherwise there is little to notice in the history. The great lords, temporal and spiritual, were non-resident. The chief local family was that of Clifton in the south; the others appear to have been little more than yeomen, though some acquired greater importance in course of time. The parish is comparatively seldom mentioned in the records. The 'fifteenth,' which became fixed about the 15th century, shows the relative importance of the various townships at that time, (fn. 2) and the county lay, established in 1624, gives a similar indication for the 17th century. (fn. 3)

Kirkham, like most of the Fylde country, was hostile to the Reformation, and between 1629 and 1633 the following squires and yeomen compounded for the two-thirds of their estates legally liable to sequestration (fn. 4) : John Barrow of Weeton, £4 a year; Sir Cuthbert Clifton of Westby, £160; Gervase Clifton of the same, £5; George Crook of Kirkham, £2; Ralph Eccleston of Singleton, £4.; John Gaunt, senior and junior, of the same, £4 and £5; George Grayson of Clifton, £2; Thomas Hesketh of Mains (described as of Poulton), £15; William Horskar of Clifton, £2; Thomas Kirkham of Warton, £2; Thomas Pattison of Great Singleton, £4; Thomas Threlfall of Clifton, £2; Thomas Westby of Mowbreck (described as of Burn), £100; and Edward Worthington of Weeton, £4. (fn. 5) It is not surprising, therefore, that on the outbreak of the Civil War the king's side found zealous supporters, (fn. 6) the Fylde proving a valuable recruiting ground. There was little fighting, if any, in the parish, (fn. 7) for the men were drawn away to other places, where they proved themselves good pillagers, according to the parliamentary historian, (fn. 8) who was, however, candid enough to record a plundering expedition by the troops of his own side. (fn. 9)

After the Restoration the district settled down to a quiet agricultural life again, the Revolution and the Jacobite insurrections producing little apparent effect in Kirkham (fn. 10) ; but one story of injustice has been told, that of Robert Blackburne of Thistleton. He was charged with having been implicated in a conspiracy to assassinate William III in 1695, and though he was never brought to trial, there being apparently no evidence against him, he was kept a close prisoner in Newgate for fifty years. (fn. 11) Although for a century there have been cotton and other manufactures at the town of Kirkham, the parish as a whole has remained agricultural, as the following figures will show (fn. 11a) :—

Arable land ac.Permanent grass ac.Woods and plantations. ac.
Kirkham3458722
Bryning-with-Kellamergh304904½
Clifton-with-Salwick745½2,289¼103
Eccleston (Little)-with-Larbreck263½879½
Freckleton440¾1,782
Greenhalgh-with-Thistleton350¼1,498¼41½
Hambleton94¾1,132½
Medlar-with-Wesham484¾1,284¾27¾
Newton-with-Scales167¼980¼
Ribby-with-Wrea361½939¼45¼
Singleton581¾1,980103¾
Treales, Roseacre and Wharles947¼2,905½63
Warton1721,114¾25
Weston-with-Preese1,127½1,67192½
Westby-with-Plumpton1,157¾1,92082½
7,232½21,868½617

These figures are for Kirkham proper.

Church

The church of ST. MICHAEL (fn. 12) stands at the north-east end of the town and consists of a chancel 35 ft. by 28 ft. with south aisle and north organ chamber, (fn. 13) nave 86 ft. by 59 ft., and west tower and spire 12 ft. 3 in. square, all these measurements being internal. The building is entirely modern, the nave dating only from 1822, the tower and spire from 1844, and the chancel from 1853. The former church (fn. 14) was practically a rebuilding of the early 16th century, and consisted of a chancel, nave with north and south aisles under one roof, and west tower about 60 ft. high with embattled parapet and angle pinnacles. (fn. 15) The chancel was the width of the nave and south aisle and was under two roofs, and the nave was lit by dormer windows. The east end of the north aisle was the private chapel of the Westbys, and before its demolition there were galleries at the east and west ends and on the north side. (fn. 16)

The present wide, aisleless nave, which is in the Gothic style of the second decade of the last century, with tall single-light windows, is built on the old foundations. Its north-east corner is still known as the Westby chapel and retains the old square 18thcentury pews, and there are galleries on the north, south and west sides. The chancel is in 14thcentury style with a good five-light east window with reticulated tracery, and the tower is a rather florid example of modern 15th-century work built of Longridge stone, with a crocketed spire 150 ft. in height. The church was repaired and reseated in 1877, and the interior underwent a partial restoration in 1909. A few relics of the former building remain. Built on the inside of the west wall of the tower is a stone with the arms of Clifton, which was formerly in one of the tower buttresses, and a stone coffin and the plain octagonal bowl of a font, probably of 16thcentury date, are preserved under the tower. There is a very good 18th-century brass chandelier suspended by an elaborate wrought-iron rod; and on the south wall of the nave is a monument of good Renaissance design to Thomas Clifton, son of Sir Thomas Clifton of Lytham Hall, who died in 1688. In the floor of the chancel are stones in memory of two former vicars, Richard Clegg (d. 1720) and Charles Buck (d. 1771).

There is a ring of eight bells (fn. 17) cast by C. & G. Mears in 1846.

The plate (fn. 18) is all modern, and consists of a set of two chalices, two patens and a flagon of 1845, presented by Charles and Elizabeth Birley in 1853.

The registers of baptisms and burials begin in 1540 and those of marriages in 1539, but the first volume, 1540 to 1628, is a copy made in the latter year. (fn. 19)

The earliest dated gravestone in the churchyard is of 1653. On the south side is a sundial on a fluted stone shaft, the name 'Noblett' alone being decipherable on the plate.

Advowson

The church of Kirkham was no doubt one of the three in Amounderness mentioned in Domesday Book. Together with its priests it was in 1093 given by Geoffrey the sheriff of Count Roger of Poitou to Shrewsbury Abbey, (fn. 20) but in the following year by Count Roger himself to St. Martin (fn. 21) of Sées. It was about 1140 restored to Shrewsbury, (fn. 22) but in 1196 obtained by Theobald Walter, he agreeing to pay the abbey 12 marks a year. (fn. 23) The Crown usually presented to the benefice, (fn. 24) and in 1279 the advowson was acquired by the king from Theobald Boteler, (fn. 24a) and was soon afterwards given to the Cistercian Abbey of Vale Royal, near Northwich. (fn. 25) After the Suppression in 1538 it was given to Christ Church, Oxford, (fn. 26) which continues to hold the rectory, presenting the vicars.

The vicarage seems to have been ordained when the church was given to Vale Royal (fn. 27) ; by a further ordination in 1357 the abbot and convent were allowed to present one of their own monastery to the benefice, they paying him 40 marks a year, and he being responsible for the maintenance of the parsonage-house ani the care of souls. (fn. 28)

As early as 1220 khe church, or perhaps twothirds of it, was valued at 80 marks a year. (fn. 29) In 1291 the rectory was taxed at £160 and the vicarage at £23 6s. 8d. (fn. 30) but on account of the destructive raid of the Scots in 1322 these amounts were reduced to £53 6s. 8d. and £6 13s. 4d. respectively. (fn. 31) The Priors of Penwortham and Lancaster had shares of the tithes. (fn. 32) The same benefices were returned at the reduced rates in 1341. (fn. 33) In 1535 the value of the rectory was estimated at £100 a year, (fn. 34) and that of the vicarage at £21 1s. (fn. 35) The rectorial tithes were usually let on lease. (fn. 36) In 1650 the vicar received £80 a year from tithes and other dues as well as £50 augmentaton from the Committee of Plundered Ministers. (fn. 37) About 1717 the income was given as only £60, arising from the small tithes, Easter dues, and surplice fees; there was an old house with a customary acre of glebe belonging to it. (fn. 38) The value of the small tithes advanced rapidly in the latter part of the 18th and the beginning of the 19th century, being £1,600 in 1835. (fn. 39) The vicar's income is now returned as £400. (fn. 40) The Dean and Chapter of Christ Church have recently given the rectorial tithes of the present reduced ecclesiastical parish of Kirkham to the vicar. (fn. 41)

The following have been incumbents:—

Rectors
InstitutedNamePatronCause of Vacancy
c. 1170Adam the Dean (fn. 42)
c. 1211Walter de Grey (fn. 43) The King
4 July 1213Simon le Blund (fn. 44) "res. W. de Grey
c. 1225Richard (fn. 45)
1236William de York (fn. 46) The King
29 Jan. 1246–7Aymer de Valence (fn. 47) "res. W. de York
c. 1251Artaud de Sancto Romano (fn. 48) "res. A. de Valence
c. 1258Henry de Wingham (fn. 49) "d. A. de S. Romano
c. 1259Mr. Henry de Gaunt (fn. 50) The Kingres. H. de Wingham
22 Aug. 1277John de Kirkby (fn. 51) "res. H. de Gaunt
c. 1286John de Conisburgh (fn. 52)
Vicars
oc. 1331John de Ardern (fn. 53)
oc. 1332–49Robert de Newton (fn. 54)
c. 1350William de Slaidburn (fn. 55)
oc. 1357William de Bolton (fn. 56)
28 Aug. 1362Philip de Greenhul (fn. 57) Ab. of Vale Royal
oc. 1394–1401Thomas de Hornby (fn. 58)
Roger DiringAb. of Vale Royal
28 Dec. 1418William Torfot (fn. 59–60) "d. R. Diring
9 Sept. 1420Mr. John Cottam (fn. 61) "d. W. Torfot
14 Mar. 1452–3Edmund Lache (fn. 62) "d. J. Cottam
oc. 1504Richard Davy (fn. 63)
c. 1510Thomas Smith (fn. 64) Ab. of Vale Royal
c. 1542James Smith (fn. 65)
6 Sept. 1585James Smith (fn. 66) John Smithd. Jas. Smith
17 Nov. 1591James Sharples, M.A. (fn. 67) Christ Ch., Oxf
20 Nov. 1594Nicholas Helme, M.A. (fn. 68) John Sharplesd. J. Sharples
18 Aug. 1598Arthur Greenacre, M.A. (fn. 69) Cuthbert Sharplesd. N. Helme
22 Jan. 1627–8John Gerard, M.A. (fn. 70) Christ Ch., Oxfd. A. Greenacre
17 July 1630Edward Fleetwood, M.A. (fn. 71) Christ Ch., Oxf.res. J. Gerard
1650John Fisher (fn. 72) res. E. Fleetwood
31 Mar. 1663Christ Ch., Oxf.
20 June 1666Richard Clegg, M.A. (fn. 73) "d. J. Fisher
10 June 1720William Dickson, B.A. (fn. 74) "d. R. Clegg
7 July 1744Charles Buck, M.A. (fn. 75) "d. W. Dickson
9 Aug. 1771Humphrey Shuttleworth, M.A. (fn. 76) "d. C. Buck
18 Jan. 1813James Webber, D.D. (fn. 77) "d. H. Shuttleworth
15 Dec. 1847George Lodowick Parsons, M.A. (fn. 78) "d. J. Webber
24 Aug. 1852William Law Hussey, M.A. (fn. 79) "d. G. L. Parsons
1862George Richard Brown, M.A. (fn. 80) "res. W. L. Hussey
15 June 1875Henry Williams Mason, M.A. (fn. 81) "d. G. R. Brown
20 Nov. 1902Welbury Theodore Mitton, M.A. (fn. 82) "d. H. W. Mason

It will be observed that the early rectors, presented by the kings, were as usual busy public officials who discharged their duties by deputy, and that the donation to Vale Royal was probably of advantage to the parish, as giving it a permanent and properly paid vicar instead of a stipendiary curate. These vicars, however, do not seem to have been of more than local importance, and even since the Reformation, while the advowson has been held by Christ Church, Oxford, none of them calls for special mention. Before the Reformation the due service of the parish church, chantry and chapels at Lund, Singleton and Hambleton would require five priests. (fn. 83) This was the staff recorded at the bishop's visitations (fn. 84) in 1548 and 1554; but in 1562 only the vicar and two others are named, and the vicar alone seems to have conformed fully to the Elizabethan requirements. (fn. 85) He had apparently been brought up under the Reform of Henry VIII and accepted all the changes made by the civil power, holding the benefice till his death. No zeal can be looked for in such cases, (fn. 86) and the three chapels appear to have been left to decay, but it may be noted that the organ in the church was allowed to remain. (fn. 87) The vicars appear usually to have had a curate. (fn. 88) In the Commonwealth time additional places of worship seem to have been provided, but it was not till the 18th century that chapels at Hambleton, Lund, Singleton and Warton are found to be regularly used for service. (fn. 89)

A report made to the Bishop of Chester in 1669, probably by the vicar of Kirkham, gives a lively account of the conditions ecclesiastical:—

There are three sorts of conventicles, viz. Papists, Quakers, and Fanatical or Mixed Multitude. Of the Papists there are two conventicles very visible at Westby Hall, rented by one Mr. Butler, the supposed priest, whither resort some hundreds. Another at Mowbreck where Mr. Hughson (alias Whaley) sojourneth with Mrs. Westby and, as is more than said, officiates as priest there. At Mr. Gervase Clifton's of Plumpton, aa is said, is set apart a place or chapel for Romanists, but since Mr. Hughson's abode at Mowbreck it's not so much used. At Salwick Hall, it's said, the Romanists out of Preston have their meetings. In Great Singleton they be generally papists, but have not their conventicles so fixed, but have two or three supposed priests. There hath usually been a conventicle of Quakers at one Brewer's house in or near Little Eccleston. Of the Fanatical party there was a conventicle at Lund chapel on Sunday in last Lent assizes by Mr. John Parr; and either for that or the like offence the next Sunday at Heapa chapel, it's said, he is to answer at the next assizes. There was another conventicle held by one Hartley, a Yorkshireman and lately a weaver and now an Antinomian speaker. He usurped the pulpit at Kirkham in the absence of the minister. He hath also held many conventicles at Goosnargh, the vacancy of which chapel gives the Nonconformists encouragement to meet there since the expiration of the Act against conventicles. The factions plead indulgence because of the indulgence of the papists and their experience that churchwardens' presentments are but laughed at. (fn. 90)

Dr. William Grimbaldson in 1725 left £500 for the maintenance of daily morning and evening prayers in the parish church, and these have accordingly been maintained ever since, for the donor ordained that should the prayers be neglected the income of his fund was to be given to poor housekeepers of Treales. (fn. 91) The visitation returns of the 18th century afford various interesting particulars. In 1706 a return of the church furniture was made; it included two decent surplices, two communion cups and several flagons. In 1722 the vicar administered the sacrament of the Lord's Supper on Palm Sunday, Good Friday, Easter Day, Whit Sunday, St. Jamestide, Michaelmas, Martinmas, Christmas and Shrovetide. The 1,177 families in 1755 were thus classified: Of the communion of the Church of England, 868; Popish families, 269; Protestant Dissenters, 40. There were church rate contests in 1849 and later, the Nonconformists refusing to pay. (fn. 92)

At St. Mary's altar a chantry was founded by one of the Clifton family. (fn. 93) Its endowment consisted of burgages and lands in Kirkham, Warton, Freckleton, Newton and Bilsborrow, and in 1547 amounted to £5 13s. 1d. clear per annum. (fn. 94) Thomas Primett was the incumbent in 1535 (fn. 95) and until the Suppression. He was sixty years old in 1548, and noted as 'decrepit' in the visitation of that year. He lived on until 1564; his will has been printed by the Surtees Society. (fn. 96)

Charities

Detailed official inquiries into the charities of the parish were made in 1824 and 1902–3; the report of the latter, issued in 1904, contains a reprint of the former. (fn. 97) The principal Kirkham charity is the grammar school, with an income of £1,260, and there are small educational endowments in many of the townships. There are also some special endowments for the parish church and the chapel at Lund. For the poor generally there exist funds producing £31 4s. 8d. a year distributed in money, in coal, &c. (fn. 98)

The township of Kirkham has a United Charities' Fund of £27 14s. a year, distributed in medical relief, in money and in kind (fn. 99) ; also other sums amounting to £8 0s. 3d. a year given in money. (fn. 100) Bryningwith-Kellamergh has a special fund of £2 12s. 6d. a year (fn. 101) ; Freckleton, £1 3s. (fn. 102) ; Medlar-with-Wesham, £2 10s. (fn. 103) ; Ribby-with-Wrea, £2 12s. 6d. (fn. 104) — all given in money; Treales, Roseacre and Wharles, £13 10s., which may be distributed in several ways (fn. 105) ; Warton, £3 15s. 8d. (fn. 106) ; Westby-with-Plumpton, 10s. 8d. (fn. 107) —both distributed in goods; Hambleton, £2 (fn. 108) ; Greenhalgh-with-Thistleton, £6 6s. (fn. 109) ; and Little Eccleston-with-Larbreck, £1 10s. (fn. 110) —all in money doles. Two or three charities have been lost. (fn. 111)

Footnotes

1 The total is composed thus: Kirkham proper, 11,138; Goosnargh, 4,327. Of the former of these, the townships of Kirkham and Wesham contain half.
2 Gregson, Fragments (ed. Harland), 19. The details are: Kirkham, 16s. 4d.; Bryning, £1 2s.; Clifton, £1 2s. 8d.; Eccleaton, Little, 12s. 8d.; 5 Freckleton, £1 10s. 6d.; Greenhalgh, £1 4s. 2½d.; Medlar, £1 2s.; Newton, £1 1s.; Ribby, 16s.; Treales, 18s. 1½d. Warton, £1 4s.; Weeton, £1; Westby, 12s. 8d.; Singleton, £1 4s.; Hambleton, 16s. 4d.— making a total of £15 2s. 6d. when the hundred paid £56 4s. 8d.
In addition to this Goosnargh paid £2 6s. 8d., Newsham 4s. 8d. and Whittingham £1 7s. 9½d.
3 Gregson, op. cit. 23. The details of this tax are: Kirkham £1 7s. 11d., Bryning £1 17s. 7¼d., Clifton £1 18s. 9¼d., Eccleston £1 1s. 8d., Freckleton £2 12s. 2d., Greenhalgh£2 1s. 5d., Medlir £1 17s. 7½d., Newton £1 15s. 11d., Ribby £1 7s. 4½d., Treales £1 11s., Warton £2 1s. 0¾d., Weeton £1 14s. 2¾d. Westby £1 1s. 8d., Singleton £2 1s. o¾d., Hambleton £1 7s. 11¼d. Thus for each £100 contributed by the hundred Kirkham proper had to raise £25 17s. 5d. In addition Goosnargh paid £3 19s. 10d., Newsham 7s. 11¾d. and Whittingham £2 7s. 6½d.
4 Trans. Hist. Soc. (new ser.), xxiv, 173, &c.
5 In addition John Gaunt of Singleton paid £1 as composition for arrears and Edward Hankinson of Clifton (apparently a conformist) paid £2 for his grandmother's arrears.
Occasional notices of the recusants and their 'Sunday shillings' occur in the town's books; Fishwick, Kirkham, 97, 102, 107.
6 In addition to the local squires the Earl of Derby had great estates in the parish. On the other side Major Edward Robinson of Euxton lived at Newtonwith-Scales, and was an active officer; other Parliamentary officers were William Pateson of Ribby, Richard Wilding of Kirkham, Richard Smith and George Carter of Hambleton; while members of the Presbyterian Classis of 164.6 were Edward Downs of Wesham and Richard Wilkins of Kirkham.
7 In Aug. 1644 the royal troops mustered on Freckleton Marsh, thence crossing the Ribble. They levied contributions of corn, cattle, &c, from the people of the district; 'glad was the country so to be free of them, though most were glad at their coming.' The leaders, Lord Molyneux and others, had their provisions from Mowbreck Hall. Sir John Meldrum moved his troops at Penwortham and Preston to attack them, but they were delayed, and so arrived too late. 'For more expedition command was given that horsemen should take behind them musketeers, who rid up speedily to Proud Bridge in Freckletou, where some remained. And coming up within musket shot of them killed one or two and the rest fled; but it being marsh ground and many pools and holes, nor very passable for strangers, there was not pursuit of them, so that all got over safely and marched up to the Meols'; War in Lancs. (Chet. Soc.), 56–8.
8 Ibid. 53.
9 Ibid. 38; 'they thought all the Fylde country were their enemies.' This was in 1643. In 1648 a 'thievish regiment' from Durham was quartered at Kirkham by Cromwell; ibid. 67.
10 No estates in Kirkham proper seem to have been confiscated for treason in 1717, though some in Goosnargh were.
11 Lancs. and Ches. Antiq. Notes, i, 45–50. The imprisonment was by special Acts of Parliament, 10 & 11 Will. III, cap. 13, renewed at the beginning of the reigns of Anne, George I and George II.
11 a Statistics from Bd, of Agric. (1905).
12 The church seems to be the St. Michael's named in Godfrey the Sheriff's charter of 1093; Farrer, Lancs. Pipe R. 270. The invocation also appears from the Clifton case in 1337; Fishwick, op. cit. 35.
13 The organ is now at the west end of the south aisle, and the original organchamber is used as a choir vestry. The clergy vestry occupies the east end of the south aisle.
14 A view of the old church forms the frontispiece of Fishwick's Hist, of Kirkham (Chet. Soc.); a description is given ibid. 41–3. An ordinance as to the forms in 1606–7 will be found ibid. 95.
The Clifton chapel (Fishwick, op. cit. 39) was perhaps at the end of the south aisle; it was about 1630 considered to be the most recently built part of the church. At that time a ' great flag stone which as is thought had been an altar stone' was lying near the east wall, being used to make mortar upon.
15 Cuthbert Clifton in 1512 left £6 13s. 4d. towards building of the steeple.
16 Whitaker, writing about 1822, says: 'The present church is well repaired and handsome . . . there is not, however, a relic of anything sufficiently old or curious about the place to detain a topographer'; Richmondshire, ii, 436.
17 The old bells were sold. In 1571 'the great bell had been taken down and a new one put up'; Fishvrick, op. cit. 90. A second bell is named in 1613 (ibid. 95) and a clock was set up in 1612.
18 The plate in 1601 consisted of 'two old platters' and a 'communion cup with cowl of Bilver'; Fishwick, op. cit. 94. The books in tie church at that time included a 'prayer-book for the coronation ' and two copies of Foxe's Acts and Monument.
In 1641 the church was broken into and 'the green covering for the communion table and all the other clothes in the [iron] chest stolen'; ibid. 102.
19 In Fishwick, op. cit. (89–115), may be seen extracts of the records of the thirty sworn men who governed the parish.
20 Farrer, Lancs. Pipe R. 270. Various confirmations were given later.
21 Ibid. 290.
22 Ibid. 276–83. In spite of this restoration the church of Kirkham was included in a confirmation to the priory of Lancaster by John when Count of Mortain, 1189–93; ibid. 298. See also the account of the religious houses, V.C.H. Lancs, ii, 167.
23 Final Conc. (Rec. Soc. Lancs. and Ches.), i, 2. Theobald Walter had already in 1194 had a suit with Adam the Dean of Kirkham and Richard the Clerk respecting the advowson; Curia Regis R. 2, m. 17 d.
In 1347 the Abbot of Shrewsbury alleged that the Abbot of Vale Royal was withholding the rent of 12 marks due to him from Kirkham. The defendant pleaded a release from the plaintiff dated 30 May 1341, which was accordingly allowed; Coram Rege R. 348, m. 41. See also Fishwick, op. cit. 32.
24 The right of the heirs of Theobald Walter was acknowledged from time to time by the Crown, e.g. Lancs. Inq. and Extents (Rec. Soc. Lancs. and Ches.), i, 120; Cal. Pat. 1232–47, p. 175.
24 a In 1270–1 Theobald le Boteler, who was the great-grandson of Theobald Walter, claimed the advowson of Kirkham against the king, asserting that if the kings had presented they had done so on account of the minority of the heirs at the time 5 Curia Regis R. 201, m. 19; 204, m. 20. In 1277 Edward I, on a fresh vacancy, claimed the advowson against Theobald le Boteler, and also against Edmund the king's brother, as lord of the honour; De Banco R. 21, m. 16 d., 95. Two years later Theobald acknowledged the king's right; Final Conc, i, 157. See also Cal. Close, 1272–9, p. 546.
25 The advowson of the church, with the chapels, was first granted on 5 Dec. 1280, and was confirmed in 1287; Chart. R. 74 (9 Edw. I), m. 11, no. 88; 81 (15 Edw. I), m. 3, no. 8; Fishwick, op. cit. 211, A further confirmation of the abbey's possessions was granted in 1299, and in this it is stated that at the king's request Honorius IV and Nicholas IV had appropriated the church to the monastery; Ormerod, Ches. ii, 168–70; Dugdale, Mon. v, 709–11. In the abbey chartulary the grant from Pope Honorius is ascribed to the good will of Otes Grandison; ibid, v, 706. The date is given as 1286 in Fishwick, op. cit. 30.
26 The grant of the manor, rectory, &c, of Kirkham and the chapel of Goosnargh was made in 1546; Pat. 38 Hen. VIII.
27 The vicarage is named in the taxation of Pope Nicholas, 1292.
28 Baines, Lancs. (ed. 1870), ii, 484, citing the registers of the archbishop's court. In 1378 the fruits of the church were sequestered because it was found the 40 marks were not being paid by the abbey; Raines MSS. (Chet. Lib.), xxii, 389.
29 Lancs. Inq. and Extents, i, 120.
30 Pope Nick. Tax. (Rec. Com.), 307.
31 Ibid. 307, 337.
32 Pope Nich. Tax. (Rec. Com.), 309; the Penwortham share was estimated at £2 and that of Lancaster at £1 6s. 8d. The former priory received 23s. 4d. in 1535; Valor Eccl. (Rec. Com.), v, 233.
33 Inq. Nonarum (Rec. Com.), 37. The tithes of corn, &c, were thus valued in the several townships: Clifton, £3 6s.; Newton, £2 5s. 8d.; Freckleton, £3 1s.; Warton, £2 5s. 8d.; Bryning, £2 7s. 8d.; Ribby, £2 14s. 4d.; Westby, £2 2s. 4d.; Weeton,£2 7s. 8d.; Singleton, £3 14s. 4d.; Hambleton, £2 6s.; Larbreck, £2 17s. 8d.; Thistleton, £2 9s.; Wesham, £1 17s. 4d.; Treales, £3 14s. 4d.; Kirkham, £2 1s.; Goosnargh, £6 13s. 4d.; Whittingham, £5 6s. 8d.; Newsham, £1 6s. 8d. The difference between the old and new taxations was accounted for by the omission of the tithe of hay, &c, about 10 marks a year, small tithes, oblations, &c, pertaining to the altarage 20 marks and the glebe of the church 10 marks; but the main deficiency was due to the destruction and war of the Scots, viz. £80 a year.
34 Valor Eccl. (Rec. Com.), v, 209 (misprinted 100s.). In 1540 the farm of the tithes of Kirkham produced £64, those of Goosnargh £29 9s., and the manse £8 10s.; Dugdale, Mon. Angl. v, 711.
35 Valor Eccl. (Rec. Com.), v, 263. The manse was valued at 1s., tithes of wool and lambs £7, of hay, small tithes and Easter roll £14. 9s. 4d. The church dues paid by the vicar amounted to 9s. 4d
36 Fishwick, op. cit. 36; Commonw. Ch. Surv. (Rec. Soc. Lancs. and Ches.), 153–4. The family of Clifton of Westby and Lytham have usually been lessees of all or part.
37 Ibid. 154–5; Plund. Mins. Accts. (Rec. Soc Lancs. and Ches.), 9, 96.
38 Gastrell, Notitia Cestr. (Chet. Soc), ii, 414. There were four churchwardens chosen by the vicar aad thirty men, viz. one yearly out of Treales or Wceton, one out of Clifton-with Salwck, one out of Westby with Plumptons and the other out of the remaining townships.
39 Baincs, Lancs, (ed. 1836), iv, 385.
40 Manch. Dioc. Dir.
41 Information of the Dean of Christ Church, Oxf.
42 He is called 'de Kirkham' and was probably rector of the church and Dean of Amounderness; Farrer, op. cit. 38, 409, 366. He was concerned in the plea of 1194 regarding the advowson already mentioned. A charter of about the same date was attested by Adam the Dean, William de Kirkham and other ecclesiastics, while another was attested by Simon and William chaplains of Kirkham living while Richard was rector there; Cockersand Chartul. (Chet. Soc), i, 335, 332. See also the account in Yorks. Arch. Journ. xxi, 59.
43 Chancellor of England 1205–14, Bishop of Worcester 1214, Archbishop of York 1215–55; Dict. Nat. Biog. Kirkham was one of the benefices given him by King John, who had the right of presentation by reason of the minority of the heir of Theobald Walter; Dods. MSS. cxlix, fol. 58; Curia Regis R. 204, m. 20.
44 Rot. Lit. Pat. (Rec. Com.), 102; Simon Blund or Blundel was nephew of the Archbishop of Dublin. The king presented to two-thirds only of the rectory, which he held (as above) on account of the wardship of the son and heir of Theobald Walter; Lancs. Inq. and Extents, i, 120. Henry de Loundres was Archbishop of Dublin 1212–28; Dict. Nat. Biog.
45 Richard rector of Kirkham occurs early in the time of Henry III; for instance, he attested a charter in conjunction with Adam de Yealand, 'then sheriff,' i.e. 1228–31; Lytham D. at Durham, 1 a, 2 ae, 4 ae, Ebor. no. 40. See also Whallcy Couch. (Chet Soc), ii, 459; Lanc. Ch. (Chet. Soc), ii, 429; Kuerden MSS. ii, fol. 197. It is thus evident that he resided at Kirkham, but he was only a 'clerk' and had several children, one of whom, Master William de Kirkham, also a clerk, seems to have been a man of standing in the district; Lytham D. 2 a, 2 ae, 4 ae, Ebor. no. 26; Cockersand Chartul. (Chet. Soc), i, 217, &c. Another son, Jordan, had land in Goosnargh and Greenhalgh; ibid, i, 240.
It should be noticed that in one deed Richard is called conrector of Kirkham; during the tenure of Simon le Blund he held the other third part of the rectory, and probably succeeded to the whole on Simon's death; Dods. MSS. liii, fol. 85b, no. 27. Among the Lytham Priory charters at Durham is one attested by Simon Blund, rector of Kirkham, and Richard, rector of Kirkham; Misc. Chart, no. 477.
46 Cal. Pat. 1232–47, p. 156. In the February following the king notified that he had given the advowson of the church of Kirkham (as part of the possessions of the heir of Theobald le Boteler) to Richard Earl of Poitou and Cornwall, guardian of the heir; ibid. 175. Richard, king of the Germans, according to the later pleadings confirmed the presentation of William de York; Curia Regis R. 204, m. 20. William was a prominent public official, one of the three custodians of the realm in 1242 and Bishop of Salisbury 1246–56; Diet. Nat. Biog. He was provost of Beverley in 1246, when the rectory of Kirkham was said to be worth 240 marks a year; Assize R. 404, m. 22.
47 Cal. Pat. 1232–47, p. 496; he is here called son of the Count de la Marche, and elsewhere the king's brother, for Isabel, widow of King John, married Hugh Count of La Marche. He became Bishop of Winchester in 1250–1 and died 1260; Dict. Nat. Biog. Aymer is named as rector in 1248; Close, 62, m. 10 d.
In a charter of about 1245–65 there occur among the witnesses 'Robert and Roger, chaplains of the church of Kirkham'; Lytham D. at Durham, 1 a, 2 ae, 4 ae, Ebor. no. 54.
48 In the long statement regarding the advowson in 1277 it is recited that King John (as above) presented Walter de Grey and Simon le Blund, and that the latter died rector in the time of Henry III; also that Henry III presented William de York (cause of vacancy not stated), Aymer de la Marche, Artaud de Sancto Romano (who died rector), Henry de Wingham and Henry de Gaunt; De Banco R. 21, m. 16 d., 95. These presentations had been made by reason of minorities, except the last, when the king presented by reason of regality, the rector having been elected to the bishopric of London.
Artaud de Sancto Romano was presented to Shalford in 1241; Cal. Pat. 1232–47, p. 268. He is often named in the Patent Rolls, &c, being an officer of the Wardrobe. He seems to have died about 1257; Excerpta e Rot. Fin. (Rec. Com.), ii, 252, 326.
49 Cal. Pat. 1247–58, p. 624. Henry de Wingham or Wengham was also a public official: keeper of the Great Seal 1255–9, Bishop of London 1259–62; Dict. Nat. Biog. He was also rector of Preston 1256–62.
50 Master Henry de Gaunt seems to have succeeded Artaud at the Wardrobe; Exeerpta e Rot. Fin. (Rec. Com.), ii, 364.
51 Cal. Pat. 1272–81, p. 227. The king having obtained the advowson presented John de Kirkby, no doubt the Bishop of Ely, 1286–90; Dict. Nat. Biog.
52 He occurs as rector in 1290, 1292 and 1297; De Banco R. 86, m. 214; Assize R. 408, m. 91, ioid.; Cal. Pat. 1292–1301, p. 237. He must have been appointed before the appropriation of the rectory to Vale Royal.
53 He attested a Freckleton deed in 1331; Kuerden MSS. iii, F 3.
54 He attested deeds in Oct. 1332 and in 1349; Dods. MSS. cliii, fol. 73 (J.P.E.); Kuerden MSS. iv, K 17. He is named as vicar in a pleading in 1344; Assize R. 1435, m. 43. In the archdeacon's claim for dues it was alleged that the vicarage of Kirkham -was twice vacant, on account of the plague, between S Sept. 1349 and 11 Jan. 1349–50 3 Engl. Hist. Rev. v, 526.
55 He was vicar early in 13545 Duchy of Lanc. Assize R. 3, m. ij. In 1357 he was described as 'lately vicar'; ibid. 6, m. 3 d. He was Dean of Amounderness and appears to have been guilty of oppression in hit office, securing a pardon some time between 1354 and 1361; Dep. Keeper's Rep. xxxii, App. 344.
56 This name is given by Fishwick (op. cit. 70) on the authority of ' the records of the Thirty-men.' He may be identical with Slaidburn.
57 Raines MSS. (Chet. Lib.), xxii, 387. This and some later institutions are given in Whitaker, Hist, of Richmondshire, ii, 437 (from Torre). Greenhill (or Greenhalgh) was a monk of Vale Royal.
58 In 1394 Hornby (or Hernby) was going across the seas and nominated attorneys; Towneley MS. CC (Chet. Lib.), no. 392. His estate in the vicarage was ratified in 1399; Cal. Pat. 1399– 1401, p. 3. He was plaintiff in 1401; PaL of Lanc. Plea R. 1, m. 5 d.
59 –60 Raines MSS. xxii, 395. He was a priest.
61 Ibid, xxii, 397; he was a priest. He is named in various charters, &c; Kuerden fol. MS. p. 383 (1422); Kuerden MSS. iv, K 17 (1427–8); Pal. of Lanc. Plea R. 3, m. 28b (1441); Fishwick, op. cit. 51 (1450–1).
In 1448 it was ordered that he and others should be put in prison till they should pay, £200 to the Abbot of Vale Royal; Pal. of Lanc. Plea R. 11, m. 20b.
He seems to have had a son Peter in 1429; Kuerden MSS. iv, K 18. His father was named William and his grandfather was John Cottam.
62 Raines MSS. xxii, 379. He was vicar in 1458; Lancs. Inq. p.m. (Chet. Soc), ii, 81.
63 Kuerden MSS. iv, P 121, no. 74. He founded a chantry or added to the endowment of the old one. A Richard Davy of Gonville Hall, Camb., became M.A. in 1495–6; Grace Booh B (Luard Mem.), i, 82, 119. One of the name was rector of Norton in Norfolk in 1535; Valor Eccl. iii, 320.
64 In a return compiled in 1527 Thomas Smith is given as vicar for eighteen years past, having been presented by the Abbot and convent of Vale Royal; his benefice was worth £40 a year; Duchy of Lanc. Rentals, bdle. 5, no. 15. He occurs as vicar in 1512; Duchy of Lanc. Inq. p.m. iv, no. 12. He was buried at Kirkham 23 Oct. 1541; Fishwick, op. cit. 72, 122.
William Stringer was 'parish priest' (curate-in-charge) in 1537; Wills (Rec. Soc. Lancs, and Ches.), 73.
65 A Precipe was addressed to the Bishop of Chester and James Smith, clerk, on 27 Mar. 1542, that they should permit Miles Spencer and William Wright to present to the vicarage, then vacant and in their gift; PaL of Lanc. Writs Proton. (67, 34 Hen. VIII). From this it seems that Smith was already in possession. His name appears in the visitation lists of 1548, 1554 and 1562. He was buried at Kirkham 11 July 1585; Fishwick, op. cit. 73, 124. For church goods in 1552 see Chet. Misc. (new ser.), i, 4.
66 Some of the institutions and notes have been taken from Baines' Lancs. (ed. Croston), v, 361–2, and Fishwick's Kirkham, 73–87, where notices of the different vicars will be found. The records in the Diocesan Registry, Chester, have also been searched.
John Smith of Stalmine Grange was patron in virtue of a grant by William Troutbeck, true patron; Earwaker MSS.
67 Educated at St. John's Coll., Camb., of which he was scholar; M.A. 1591; information of Mr. R. F. Scott. Buried at Kirkham 21 Sept. 1594.
68 The patron presented in virtue of a grant from the Dean and Chapter of Christ Church, Oxf., dated 8 Dec. 1591. Nicholas Helme was educated at Brasenose Coll., Oxf.; M.A. 1585; Foster, Alumni. A complaint to the Bishop of Chester in 1598 (Visit. Papers) alleged that Helme was supposed to have come into the vicarage by simony, that he kept another man's wife in his house under suspicious circumstances, that he refused to wear the surplice and 'administered the wine as it came from the cellar, without any prayers or reverence,' and that he was ready to minister the sacrament to a blind woman and another who 'had beads in their hands'; Fishwick, op. cit. 75. The charges may have been malicious merely, but Helme's death would render inquiry unnecessary. He was buried at Kirkham, 16 July 1598.
69 The patron was son of John Sharpies. Greenacre was described as 'a preacher' in 1610; Hist. MSS. Com. Rep. xiv, App. iv, 9. He died in 1627, and his widow afterwards practised as a midwife, attesting a monstrous birth in or about 1646; Fishwick, op. cit. 79. The surname is given as Gatacre.
70 Act Bk. at Chester, 1579–1676, fol. 96. The institutions from this time have been compared with those in the Institution Books, P.R.O. as printed in Lancs, and Ches. Antiq. Notes.
John Gerard compounded for first-fruits 23 Feb. 1627–8; Lancs, and Ches. Rec. (Rec. Soc. Lancs. and Ches.), ii, 412. He appears to be the John Gerard of Christ Church, Oxf. (M.A. 1615), who was beneficed in Norfolk in 1630; Foster, Alumni Oxon. He is said to have 'exchanged with Mr. Fleetwood, who passed over to his son' (son-in-law); note in the Reg. by Vicar Clegg.
71 For pedigree see Dugdale's Visit. (Chet. Soc), 111. Fleetwood compounded for first-fruits 29 Oct. 1630. He had various quarrels with the parishioners and bishop. He seems to have been a Puritan, 'sometimes' omitting to use the surplice, though he said the Litany regularly thrice a week. In 1634 the sum of 4s. 3d. was 'paid for the exercise and for the moderators and the preacher'; Fishwick, op. cit. 98. 'Exercise days' are again mentioned in 1646; ibid. 102. He readily conformed to the Presbyterian discipline in 1646 (Baines, op. cit. i, 228) and signed the 'Harmonious Consent' in 1648.
In 1646 he published, under the title of Strange Signs from Heaven, an account of the strange birth above mentioned. A parishioner, Mr. Hoghton,' a great Papist and of great parentage,' and his motherin-law 'did usually scoff and mock the Roundheads, and in derision of Mr. Prynne and the others cut off the cat's ears and called it by his name'; his wife also, being pregnant, wished that rather than be a Roundhead, or bear one, her child might have no head, which monstrosity was accordingly borne by her; Fishwick, op. cit. 78–9.
72 Fisher had been minister of Bispham, and was regarded as 'a godly and orthodox divine,' succeeding Fleetwood (whose daughter he married) at Kirkham in or before Feb. 1650–1, when the £50 out of Thomas Clifton's sequestered tithes was confirmed to him; Plund. Mins. Accts. i, 59, 96. He conformed at the Restoration and died in possession 18 Mar. 1665–6.
It is a token of his conformity that in 1662 a font was 'put up' at a cost of £2 15s. 4d,; Fishwick, op. cit. 105. At the same time the king's arms and the Commandments were painted.
73 Educated at University Coll., Oxf.; M.A. 1663; Foster, Alumni. He is chiefly known for his violent opposition to Cuthbert Harrison, the Nonconformist minister at Elswick; he had also disputes with his parishioners. There is extant a letter from him dated 1684, in which he complains that the Quakers, 'the most . incorrigible sinners that I know,' had opened a burial-ground, and desires that the sheriff may be informed; Hist. MSS. Com. Rep. xiv, App. iv, 146. He was 'conformable' in 1689; ibid. 229. He founded a charity for the poor at Kirkham, and also established a school and a loan fund at Todmorden. There is a monument to him in the church.
74 Educated at Christ Church, Oxf.; B.A. 1701; Foster, Alumni. The name is also spelt Dixon.
75 Educated at Christ Church, Oxf.; M.A. 1736; Foster. On his epitaph in the church he is described as 'most famous for piety and learning.' His son Charles was curate of Lund (d. 1808) and had among other issue a son Henry Rishton Buck, lieutenant 33rd Reg., who fell at Waterloo; Fishwick, op. cit. 131–2.
76 Educated at Christ Church, Oxf.; M.A. 1760; Foster. He was also vicar of Preston 1782–1809; see the account of that church. He was buried in the chancel of Kirkham Church.
77 Educated at Christ Church, Oxf., becoming tutor and censor; M.A. 1796; D.D. 1829. He was vicar of St. Mary Magdalen, Oxf., 1803, Prebendary of York 1812, Dean of Ripon 1828, and had other preferments at various times; Foster, Alumni. He vigorously asserted his rights, recording his satisfaction at making the vicar 'as he ought to be, the first person in the place.' He procured the rebuilding of the church (the cost being borne by a rate) and raised the vicar's income from £250 to over £1,600 a year; but in the opinion of his parishioners he grossly neglected his duties, being non-resident and rendering no additional service for the increased income, and they petitioned Parliament on the matter; Baines, Lancs, (ed. 1870), ii, 486.
78 Educated at Christ Church, Oxf., of which he was student; M.A. 1834. Incumbent of Bensington 1835.
79 Educated at Christ Church, Oxf., of which he was student; M.A. 1837. He was hon. canon of Manchester 1856 and rector of Great Ringstead 1862–88.
80 Educated at Christ Church, Oxf.; M.A. 1841. Incumbent of Maiden Bradley 1851–62.
81 Educated at Christ Church, Oxf, of which he was student-, M.A. 1851. Incumbent of Wigginton 1858–75, hon. canon of Manchester 1887. He died 20 June 1902.
82 Educated at Pembroke Coll., Camb.; M.A. 1888. Formerly beneficed in Canada; vicar of Peel 1899–1902. Some details in the text and notes are due to him.
83 At an inquiry made in 1362 it was stated that in the church of Kirkham there used to be of right two priests celebrating daily and serving the parish, which 'chantries' had been withdrawn by the Abbot of Vale Royal, one of them thirteen years before and the other a year ago; Inq. p.m. 36 Edw. III, pt. i, no. 120.
84 Lists at Dioc. Reg., Chester.
85 The vicar, James Smith, appeared and subscribed. William Nickson seems to have stayed at home and Lawrence Kempe appeared but did not subscribe.
86 He maybe the vicar who in 1581 (?) reported the presence of two seminary priests in his parish; Baines, Lancs, (ed. 1868), i, 180 (from Harl. MS. 360, fol. 32).
87 In 1576 for 'dressing the organs 2s. was paid, and in 1643 'for organ pipes, which had been pulled asunder by the soldiers,' 3s. 4d.; Fishwick, op. cit. 91, 102. The parish clerk in 1572 and 1576 was ordered to teach singing; ibid. 91.
88 Curates are noticed in the registers in 1596, 1608, 1619, &c.; see also Misc. (Rec. Soc. Lancs. and Ches.), 1, 68, 124.
89 In the 1610 list (Hist. MSS. Com. Rep. xiv, App. iv, 9) no chapel except Goosnargh is mentioned. Hambleton may have been an occasional exception, as a curate there is named in 1611. The vicar and the schoolmaster are the only clergymen named in Bishop Stratford's visitation list in 1691; Chester Dioc. Reg. The chapels named in the text were in use in the time of Bishop Gastrell; Notitia Cestr. ii, 422, &c.
90 Visitation papers at Chester Dioc. Reg.
91 The benefactor is described as M.D., of St Dunstan's in the West, London. He ordered that the prayers were to be at 11 a.m. and 5 p.m. in summer and 11 a.m. and 4 p.m. in winter; End. Char. Rep.
92 Nightingale, Lancs. Nonconf. i, 98– 100.
93 Raines, Chantries (Chet. Soc.), 213–16. Earlier 'chantries' are named in a preceding note. This chantry was named in 1527 as in the gift of William Clifton, the annual value being estimated as £4.; Duchy of Lanc. Rentals, &c., bdle. 5, no. 15.
In 1492–3 Richard Davy and others were enfeoffed of various lands—apparently the chantry property—of the gift of James Clifton and Richard Davy, in order to establish (faciant) a fit chaplain to celebrate at the altar of B. Mary for the souls of Richard Davy, his relatives and all the parishioners of Kirkham; Kuerden MSS. iv, K 18.
94 The gross rental of the chantry lands was £6 0s. 11d., but quit-rents of 4d. to the lord of Penwortham and 7s. 6d. to the lord of Kirkham were payable.
For a dispute as to the chantry lands in 1567 see Ducatus Lanc. (Rec. Com.), ii, 327.
95 Valor Eccl. (Rec. Com.), v, 263. William Clifton in 1537 bequeathed £3 6s. 8d. 'to the church of Kirkham towards emending of our Lady's work,' and four cows to 'the stock of our Lady of Kirkham' to pray for his soul, and desired his executors to be 'good masters' to Sir Thomas Primet, whom he styled 'my chantry priest,' and to whom he left 6s. 8d.; Wills (Rec. Soc. Lancs, and Ches.), 71–3. Thomas Clifton in 1551 left a cow 'towards our Lady's stock'; Piccope, Wills (Chet. Soc), iii, 76.
96 Richmond Wills, 171. He desired to be buried at Lytham, but left his surplice to Kirkham Church. The bequest of 2s. to the light of St. Nicholas in Lancaster Church shows how imperfectly Elizabeth's reformation had then been carried out in Lancashire.
97 The details here given are derived from this report. The Goosnargh charities are given separately.
98 Henry Colborne, a native of the parish and afterwards a scrivener in London, by his will in 1655 left money to purchase lands, a rent-charge from which was to be applied to schools and to the poor. The share of the poor was soon afterwards fixed at £5 10s. a year, which is given to the townships in rotation, and used by the overseers in a variety of ways. The rent-charge was extinguished in 1898–9 by a transfer of consols to the official trustee.
Edward Robinson and others, apparently trustees, invested £80 in 1648 in land in Freckleton; 50s. a year of the rent was to be paid to the minister of Lund, and the rest given to the poor of the parish. In 1824 the benefits were in practice confined to Clifton and four adjoining townships. The present income for the poor is £17 15s., and it is divided among the townships or hamlets of Kirkham, Freckleton, Newton-with-Scales, Cliftonwith-Salwick, Treales, Warton, Weeton and Wrea Green, and given in money or kind to the poor.
The Bread Charity represents a combination of benefactions, and goes back as far as 1670; it seems to have been due to the suggestion of the vicar, Richard Clegg. The present income is £5 9s., of which the vicar gives £2 12s., and is spent on a distribution of penny loaves every Sunday after morning service at the parish church, and on various holidays. The number of applicants is very small.
Mary Jones, widow, in 1827 left £100 for an annual Christmas gift to poor widows. The income is £2 10s. 8d., which is given in coals to widows in the townships of Kirkham and Wesham —the modern ecclesiastical parish. The vicar and churchwardens have charge of the distribution, but no difference is made on account of creed.
99 Richard Brown in 1641 gave a rentcharge of £1 on his land and Mrs. Clegg and Mrs. Sayle (before 1734) gave £20 each for the poor. Land was purchased and the bailiffs of the town have administered the income—sometimes irregularly. Some of the land has been sold and the proceeds, with accumulations, arc now represented by £628 consols. The gross income is £27 14s., and it may be applied, under a scheme of the Charity Commissioners made in 1898, in various ways—subscriptions in aid of hospitals, provident clubs, &c.; provision of nurses, outfit on entering a trade, supply of food, fuel, clothes, &c., or money grants.
100 Elizabeth Brown in 1739 left £40 on trust for poor widows. The interest has been distributed in small money gifts. The capital, now amounting to £48 14s., has been paid over to the official trustee.
William Harrison's gift of, £140 for Bibles and other religious books, for poor people in Kirkham and Little Eccleston-with-Larbreck, is now applied to school prizes, &c.
Mary Bradkirk in 1816 gave £100 for five poor persons of Kirkham, members of the Church of England and regular attenders of the parish church. The present income, £2 12s. 6d.t is distributed accordingly.
A sum of, £180, trust money of unknown origin, was in 1892 invested for the benefit of poor widows. The income is £5 3s. 9d., which is given in small turns to between fifty and sixty widows.
101 This was a gift of the above-named Mary Bradkirk. The income is divided among five poor persons; attendance at Warton or Wrea Green Church is a qualification, in accordance with recent ecclesiastical arrangements.
102 This sum appears to be due to ancient gifts by Andrew Freckleton and others, once charged upon the Marsh, and to a rent-charge of 10s. on a close called Swainson Butts. The former gift is now provided for in this manner: 'There are 230½ cattle gates on Freckleton Marsh, but in practice 231 are let yearly, the rents received being paid into the general fund . . . except that of the odd half-gate, which is now paid to the parish council. As it represents nothing corporeal and only exists as a fiction for the sake of this charity it is not assessed for rates, &c., like the other cattle gates.' The rent varies from time to time. The doles are given on St. Thomas's Day and vary from 6d. to 4s. 6d.
103 This charity was in existence in 1789. It is the income of two cattlegates on Freckleton Marsh purchased with the original endowment said to have been given by Thomas Thompson and William Crookall. The money is distributed on St. Thomas's Day to about forty poor persons.
104 This is another of Mary Bradkirk's benefactions, similar to that for Kirkham, It is given to five poor persons in equal shares.
105 William Grimbaldston, M.D., in 1725 left £300 for binding out poor children of Treales as apprentices; £400 for the master of Kirkham School, provided he had been bred at Westminster, Winchester or Eton, or in default for apprenticing, as before; £50 for classics, for Kirkham School; £500 for the saying of daily prayers in Kirkham Church, or in default for poor housekeepers born in Treales; £50 for books for poor children of the parish belonging to the Church of England. The money was invested in land, and, as there were few applications for apprenticing, a school was founded in Treales. The gift for daily prayers remains as directed; the rest of the income is now devoted to Kirkham Grammar School.
Ellen and John Bolton in 1657–8, James Porter and his brother in 1729 and others gave money for the poor which was invested in a house and land at Catforth in Woodplumpton. The rent, now £13, is administered under a scheme made by the Charity Commissioners in 1899. The scheme, however, is practically disregarded, and the net income is divided on St. Thomas's Day among poor persons belonging to the hamlet of Treales. Old 'charity money' of £15, supposed to be the gift of one Bridgett, is now represented by £20 in Kirkham Savings Bank, The income (10s.) is given in doles of 1s. or 1s. 6d. to poor people of Wharles.
106 Mrs. Mary Southworth in 1870 bequeathed £200 for the benefit of the school and scholars of the Established Church of England at Wharton. The portion for the scholars is spent on clogs for those who attend most regularly.
107 Anne Moor of Westby in 1805 left the residue of her estate, £40, for the school and the poor. The capital is now invested in consols, and the poor's moiety, formerly distributed in kind, seems for many years to have been allowed to accumulate.
108 This was a rent-charge on Lentworth Hall and other lands made by Sir Nicholas Shireburne in 1706. The charge was in 1868 placed upon a farm in Hambleton, and since its sale has been paid by the purchasers of the different portions. It is collected by the vicar and churchwardens and distributed at Christmas among about tea poor families.
109 Mary Hanktnson, a benefactor of Esprick School, also bequeathed £200 in 1805 for the benefit of the poor of that hamlet. In 1901–2 there were only two poor persons in Esprick, and the money was paid to them in monthly instalments.
One Lawrenson, of date unknown, left £20 to the poor of Greenhalgh. This sum was invested in the highways, but only £12 has been repaid; the 6s. interest is divided among the two or three poor persons in the hamlet.
110 In 1697 William Gillow of Little Eccleston charged a close called Porter's Harlow with a rent of 10s. a year for the poor of the township, and George Gillow in 1720 added 20s. a year from the same land. The 30s. continues to be paid to the overseers, who distribute it in doles of 4s. to 7s. among poor widows and others.
111 For Kirkham generally and Freckleton there was in 1824 a rent of 6s. due to a gift of Elizabeth Clitherall in 1675, and another rent of 27s. of unknown origin. This was given in money doles. The rent-charges have long ceased to be paid owing to disputes as to liability and as to the lands charged.
Mrs. Nightingale (before 1786) gave £10 for the poor of Hambleton. The money was spent on paving a lanc. Interest was paid until 1885, when the auditor disallowed it. It appears that the £10 would have been repaid to the vicar and churchwardens as trustees, if these wardens had not opposed it, fearing loss of interest.