Table of Contents:
The Third Section of the History of the Church and Parish begins with 1857, when the Rev. Thomas Roberts Jones was presented by Mrs. Davies to the Living. In 1856 an Act of Parliament was passed, entitled "The New Parishes Act." In pursuance of this Act the Ecclesiastical Commissioners, on the application of the Rev. Thomas Roberts Jones, authorized the Publication of Banns of Marriage, and the Solemnization of Marriages, as well as Baptisms, Churchings, and Burials in the Church : and the payment of Fees to the Vicar of Huddersfield was to cease at the next change of Vicar. Thus "the Chapelry District of the Holy Trinity, Huddersfield," became technically "the new Parish of Holy Trinity, Huddersfield," the Incumbent received the title of Vicar, and the last of the rights of the Vicar of Huddersfield in connection with Trinity Church ceased.
Mr. Jones' Assistant Curates were the Revs. Abraham Smith, A.T. Wood (1857-60), Frederick Ball (1861-5), Alfred Turner (1865-7), still remembered by some for his interest in the Day Schools, and his lavish gifts to babies and little children (died 1912) ; the Rev. Edward Smyth Thorpe (1868-1872), who stayed on with Mr. Jones' successor.
Soon after the advent of Mr. Jones there was a vigorous attempt to improve the Choir. We saw that in 1856 twenty boys were to be instructed as Choristers by Mr. Hanley. In July, 1858, a meeting of the Congregation was held to consider the improvement of the Choir, and the next month it was arranged that Mr. Wm. Hanley should continue the management of the Choir at his former salary, £15. A Tenor was to have £b, another £2 ; an Alto and two Basses £2 each. The Organist, Mr. Longhurst, was to have £15 as before. The boys were to sing gratuitously. The total cost of Organist, Choirmaster, and Choir was, therefore, £47. The Choir moved into the Chancel, but the organ was still in the West Gallery. This did not work, for on October 24th, 1859 (the next year), there was another meeting to consider the improvement of the Choir. After considerable discussion, it was resolved : "That the Choir be removed out of the Chancel into the Gallery." There was trouble about efficient control of the choir boys. The adult portion of the choir was also completely re-organised, Mr. Richard Garner, of Trinity Street, undertaking to get up a choir of four voices, including himself, for £45 per annum. This arrangement lasted for about seven years. In 1861 the salary of Mr. Longhurst, the organist, was advanced from £15 to £20. So the cost was going up. £65 now instead of £47. In 1867 the organist was appointed choirmaster, and a treble, alto, tenor, and bass singers were advertised for. It seems as if the boys were dispensed with.
During Mr. Jones' Incumbency five of the freehold pews came into the market. The expression is quiet a suitable one, for on June 29th, 1858, two pews in the North Gallery were sold by auction in the George Hotel, and fetched respectively £11 5s. and £17. These were purchased by the Vicar. One had belonged to Mr. Joseph Brook, of Newhouse, the other to a Mr. John Eddison. The Vicar borrowed the money for the purchase of these, and repaid it with interest in 1868. Three other pews were bought for £5 10s., £6, and £5 10s. respectively, sums which were only a fraction of their original cost. The first two of these belonged to Mr. J. W. Allen, and were in the South Aisle. The third was in the North Gallery, and had belonged to Mr. Joseph Brook. They were bought by Mr. Joseph Beaumont, but, it seems, on behalf of the Vicar, and eventually, I think, in 1868 Mrs. Allen found the money. In 1876 Mr. Thomas Allen conveyed two pews to the Vicar and Wardens. There are still a few freehold pews left in the Church in the North and South Galleries.
We have seen how the old order was changing. Another indication appears in a note for April 9th, 1860, to the effect that £34 was paid for alteration to the Reading Desk and Pulpit. I suppose the third deck was taken away, and the Clerk no longer sat there to give out the hymns and say the Amens, and otherwise lead the service. At the same time the heating of the Church was considered. Estimates were obtained for heating with hot water, but as they ran to £110 or £120 the Committee decided to have the stoves examined and repaired and made the best of. There was a stove in the middle of the Chancel, and another about one-third of the way up the middle aisle, and just before the sermon the Verger used to make a fine clatter poking them up.
In 1861 Mrs. John Allen purchased the freehold house, No. 60, Westfield, Trinity Street, and presented it to the living, to be used as Trinity Vicarage. The Deed of Conveyance, dated April, 1861, was sent in May, 1861, to the Ripon Diocesan Registry, whence it was transferred in 1913 to the Wakefield Diocesan Registry.
On July 28th, 1863, Miss Hannah Allen, daughter of Mrs. John Allen, died at Scarborough. The Rev. T.R. Jones preached a funeral sermon, in the course of which he told the Congregation that it was Miss Allen's dying wish that an Infants' School should be built at Marsh. The Congregation decided to carry this out as a memorial to Miss Allen. Subscriptions were obtained, the Allen family giving largely. The architect was Mr. Tarn, who had come to Huddersfield from London, and was a member of the Congregation during his short stay in the Town.
The Marsh Memorial School was opened on Palm Sunday, 1865. Sunday Evening Services were held there from the first, and it was opened at once as a Day School, but was not used as a Sunday School till 1874. The Babies' Class Room was added to it in 1894. The School was not placed under Government inspection until 1876, and so received no grants till then. The ground is leased from Sir J. W. Ramsden for a term of 99 years, and the annual rent is £7 12s.
In 1866 the Tower was pointed at a cost of £26, and the Organ was repaired and improved by Mr. Conacher at a cost of £120 or £130.
Before 1870 they had evidently resorted again to half-yearly collections for Church Expenses, but a further step was made. At a meeting held on April 18th, 1870, the unanimous feeling was in favour of quarterly collections for Church Expenses instead of half-yearly.
At the end of 1870 it was decided to put the Churchyard into proper condition, and certain alterations were made, Mr. James Brook, Jr., taking a leading part in the plans.
The following gentlemen were Churchwardens during Mr. Jones' Vicariate :— Messrs. Benjamin Hall, John Wilkinson, N. Carter, G. Harper, Joseph Beamont, Jr., — Roberts, Sidney F. Battye, Wm. Bance, Ben Lockwood, James Hinchliffe,William Yeoman, Joe T. Beaumont, W. W. Cliffe, J. Wilkinson (again).
In 1870 an old and valued supporter of the Church passed away in the person of Mr. Edward Lake Hesp. He was born in 1798 He was a leading and active member of the Congregation as early as 1835, for we find him often acting as a Chairman of the Lay Committee established at that time. Mr. Hesp was the last to be buried in the vaults in the crypt under the Church. His wife had been buried there.
Early in 1871 the Rev. T. R. Jones exchanged Livings with the Rev. Thomas Henry Sharpe, and left Huddersfield for Codicote. The consent of the Patron had to be obtained to this exchange, and the Patron at this time was Mr. Benjamin Haigh Allen, the eldest son of the Founder, his. mother, Mrs. Acton Davies, having died in 1865. Mr. Allen was living at Clifford Priory, Herefordshire.
On February 7th, 1871, a few friends collected in Trinity Churchyard to witness the planting by Mrs. Jones of a Fern-leaved Beech. In planting the tree Mrs. Jones used the following words : " I plant this at the request of our dear friend Mrs. Allen, this 7th day of February, 1871, in commemoration of the planting and improvement of the Churchyard and of Mr. Jones' resignation of the Living of Holy Trinity."
The seventh Incumbent was the Rev. Thomas Henry Sharpe, M.A. (1871 to 1886). His Assistant Curates were the Revs. Edward Smyth Thorpe (1868-72), Lewis Jones (1872-5), a Welshman, who has held curacies and livings in Wales since ; T.G. Johnson (1875), H. H. Rose (1875-9), since when he has been Vicar of Slaithwaite, and for years was constantly in demand as a preacher at Trinity ; D. S. Cowley, and C.M. Sharpe, son of the Vicar (1880-1886).
From January, 1874, we have a much fuller record of doings in the Parish, for with that date the Parish Magazine begins. From the first the inset was " Home Words," and it has held its place ever since in spite of many competitors, though for one year the Church Monthly was tried. The circulation was soon 300, and continued about that figure for some time. It is now, with a larger population, about 450. Let me mention some of the Annual Events recorded in the Parish Magazine.
An Annual Missionary Tea Party was held in January in the large Upper Room of Portland Street School. I should like to discover how long this had been held. It had certainly been in existence since 1837, for the Rev. Richard Collins, Senior, Rector of Kirkburton, attended it 44 times in 45 years — and he died in 1882 — so the first time he attended it was in 1837. I have been told how ladies presided at the tables in white kid gloves and poured out, whilst their footmen stood behind and served Ichabod! The glory has departed! Generally 200 people sat down to the tea and others came into the Meeting afterwards, at which several addresses were given. There were also Quarterly Meetings for the C.M.S., but the Magazine is generally sad that they were not so well attended except by young folk. However, during Mr. Sharpe's Vicariate the monetary support of the C.M.S. was much more than doubled. In 1870 it was £68. In 1880 it was £170, with an average of £166 for the ten years. That is about where we stand now, and that with the help of O.O.M. Fund. It is time for another advance.
The Vestry Meeting in April, 1873, came to two important decisions. The first was "that all accounts connected with the Church and Schools should be printed yearly, and that copies be placed in each pew before the Annual Vestry Meeting." The first part of this resolution has been carried out ever since. The latter part ceased some years ago. Was it because the accounts were found more interesting than the Sermon or Service? The second decision was that an Annual Congregational Tea Meeting be held on Easter Monday for the purpose of appointing a Committee to assist the Churchwardens in the general management of financial matters. You will remember that such a Committee had been formed in 1835, but it practically ceased to exist when Vestry Meetings began in 1857. Here then was a revival, though I do not think they knew that it was a revival. They thought it was quite a new thing. So on April 28th, 1873, a Special Congregational Meeting was held in Portland Street Schools, and appointed the Committee for that year — the first Church Council. The first Congregational Tea Party and Annual Meeting were held as arranged on Easter Monday, 1874. About 120 sat down to tea, and a very pleasant evening was spent. Short but effective speeches were made by members of the Congregation, and several songs were sung. The numbers increased from year to year, until in 1879, 400 sat down to tea — and the room was warm for the meeting.
In that same year, 1874, about three weeks after the Congregational Tea Party in Portland Street Schools, a Tea Party was held at the Marsh Memorial School, when nearly 200 sat down to tea, after which there was a crowded meeting. Important developments were evidently set forth then, for on Trinity Sunday, May 31st, 1874, a Sunday School was opened in Marsh Memorial School. The Afternoon Service held there was moved on from 3 o'clock to 3-15. The first Superintendent was Mr. Robinson, of whom I shall have more to say later.
With regard to the Sunday Schools and Whitsuntide. During these years Trinity Church had its own selections of hymns. On Whit Monday the scholars assembled at Portland Street, marched by New North Road and Blacker Lane, where they were joined by the contingent from Marsh, which grew year by year. Then they used to sing to dear old Mrs. John Allen at West Place, then proceeded to the front of the Infirmary and sang to the patients, then to tea in Portland Street, and then to the Old Rifle Fields, which were about where the Playing ground in the Park is now.
One year the Parish Magazine records that 500 scholars sat down to tea, followed by about 300 parents, friends, and members of the Congregation. The number of Sunday Scholars in 1871 was 358, in 1872 was 380, in 1873 was 441, in 1874 was 506, and still they increased. In 1873 the School was considerably enlarged by extending the main School backwards some 18 feet, but in these years of growth Portland Street Schools were not only crowded on Sundays, but rooms were used in neighbouring houses. In 1876 the first Public Distribution of Sunday School Prizes took place. Teachers provided tea at 2d., and there was plenty of warmth and noise. In 1881 the Sunday School Teachers decided to adopt courses of lessons such as those published by the Sunday School Institute. From 1873, several years in succession, Trinity Church joined with the Parish Church in an annual trip to the seaside — about 800 altogether generally going. In this way Bridlington, Scarborough, Lytham, and Blackpool were visited.
In 1874 a Band of Hope was started in Portland Street Schools. There were soon 100 members, and they increased to 200. They used to take part in the great doings on Whit Tuesday.
A Mothers' Meeting was first started in Marsh Memorial School in January, 1875. was taken by Mrs. F. Butter-worth. In 1877 it moved to the Conservative Club Rooms, no doubt because the School came under Government Inspection in 1876, and so the room would not be available on a Monday afternoon at three o'clock. The Mothers' Meeting at Portland Street School began in 1878.
Not long before Mr. Sharpe came to Huddersfield there had been a very remarkable Revival, which spread over Wales and Ireland, Scotland and parts of England. And there was a similar spiritual movement in America at the time. So there began to be what some called Revival Meetings, and these developed into the first Parochial Missions. A Special Missionary came and held Evangelistic Services for about ten days, and an effort was made to draw in and awaken the careless, the indifferent, the ungodly, and to bring professing Christians to definite decision. Mr. Sharpe was evidently in sympathy from the first with such efforts. In April, 1872, the Rev. Wm. Haslam held such a Mission in Trinity Church. In November, 1874, "Charles Smith, late a working man" (such is the description), did the same at Marsh. In October, 1875, the Rev. John E. Linnell, of Christ Church, Burton-on-Trent, came, and later, in 1884, the Rev. R. D. Munro.
In his New Year's letter for 1877, in the Parish Magazine, the Vicar writes : "We have lately commenced an Occasional Meeting for prayer after the Sunday Evening Service, which, up to this time has been well attended, affording great encouragement, and are forming a Holy Trinity Church Union, the first monthly meeting of which will be held on Saturday evening next at 7-30." These were found useful and hopeful for a time. About 100 or more used to remain for prayer on Sunday evening, but after a year or so the monthly meetings of the Union on Saturdays fell off, and the Magazine again and again bewails the fact.
Other institutions were Portland Street Y.M.C.A., also the Mutual Improvement Class every Monday evening — and Pleasant Evenings. Clearly there was an immense amount of work and earnest effort. The Clergy were well backed up, not only by ladies, but by several gentlemen of the Congregation, who threw themselves heart and soul into these good works. Some of them are among us still — not quite so young as they were then.
In December, 1875, Mrs. Wilkinson handed over to the Vicar and Churchwardens £150, which she had collected, to be invested, the interest to be appropriated for keeping in •order the Churchyard, and especially cutting the grass in May, June, July, August, September, and October.
In 1877 Mr. Sidney F. Battye bequeathed (1) £200 to be invested for the benefit of the Choir Fund, and (2) £100 to be applied by the Treasurer and Committee of Management for the benefit of Portland Street Boys' School. This sum was invested for some years, but has been expended of late years in carrying out necessary improvements at Portland Street Schools.
I pass now to the great changes effected in the interior of the Church in the years 1874 1880. Unhappily in the latter year there was a serious dispute.
Opposite page 37 you will see a plan of the Floor of the Church, first as it was in 1873, and then as it was after the alterations in 1880. The alterations made in 1874 affected only the West end of the Church. The Screen which formed the lobby under the West Gallery was removed, and that part added to the Church, being seated as it is now. Also some of the square pews at the West end of the North and South Aisles were removed and the present seats placed there. In these ways the accommodation on the floor of the Church was increased by 150. Otherwise the Church remained the same. The work of restoration took six weeks, and the Church was re-opened on Wednesday, November nth, 1874. There was a large congregation, and the preacher was the Rev. T.A. Stowell, M.A , Rector of Christ Church, Salford, son of the Rev. Hugh Stowell, who was Curate of Holy Trinity, 1823-5, and preached at the re-opening of the Church in 1846. The entire cost of the work of restoration amounted to about £350, towards which by the end of the opening £270 had been subscribed by the congregation and their friends.
It is evident that these alterations were made without obtaining a Faculty or Licence from the Chancellor of the Diocese. No parishioner objected, and so the matter passed without any trouble. But the alterations proposed in 1880 were very much more extensive. For some time it had been felt desirable to bring the organ down from the West Gallery, and to re-seat the body of the Church, but the Committee could not face the cost until they were brought to the point by a very generous offer of £1,000 from Mrs. John Allen if the whole Scheme was carried out. The whole Scheme included the following :—
A small minority, of whom the chief was Mr. William Hick, opposed the removal of the Galleries on the ground that it would be impossible to satisfy the Clause in the Act of Parliament assigning 500 free sittings to the Poor. The majority contended that there would be an ample supply of free sittings for those who desired them, and it was also proposed that all sittings should be free when the bell stopped. The work was practically put in hand and one bay of the North Gallery removed, when, through the opposition, the Chancellor of the Diocese stepped in, and a Faculty had to be applied for before the work could be allowed to proceed. Representatives of the two parties with their Solicitors had to appear at Ripon, and then the matter was heard more fully in Portland Street School. The result was that the Faculty was granted for all the proposed alterations except the removal of the Galleries. I fear that there was a considerable amount of heat and bitterness, and the Church Committee had to find the money to pay the opposer's costs as well as their own. The Faculty in part having been obtained, the work started in earnest in September, 1880, and the Church was re-opened with a week of Services beginning on Monday December 6th, the Dean of Ripon preaching at 12 noon, and the Rev. F. Pigou, Vicar of Halifax, in the evening. Then there were three preachers from Sheffield, the Rev. H.A. Farrell, the Rev. Canon Blakeney, and the Rev. W.H. Falloon, and on Sunday the Vicar preached in the morning, and the Rev. H.H. Rose, always welcome, in the evening.
Now let us look at the Church and the Services to note the changes which came in December, 1880.
Enter the Church at the west door. The old dark lobby had gone six years before. Now look round the Church and you see no square pews, no high pews (except in the Galleries which remained as before), but you see the seats as they are now — neat and reasonable and comfortable, with their dark crimson woven matting. The old three or two decker had gone before this, and the pulpit tried for some time to find its proper position and proper height. Instead of one low step into the Chancel there were the three steps we see now. Instead of paving covered with cocoa-nut matting along the aisles, there were our present handsome encaustic tiles. A new Communion Table Cover had been given, and ladies of the congregation had worked the mat for the step beneath the rails, which were of heavy oak. The Reading Desk was where it is now, only the Clergyman faced the congregation still. The ante-room of the Clergy Vestry had become a Choir Vestry, and the Choir were surpliced then for the first time. We saw that early in Mr. Jones' time they began to train boys in the Choir, but this had been given up, till the surpliced Choir began in 1880. We have two men in our Choir to-day who joined it then as boys, Mr. Albert Woodhead and Mr. John William Halstead ; and Mr. Shambrook joined then too. Further, the opportunity was taken of introducing a new Hymn Book — Mercer's being exchanged for the Hymnal Companion (2nd Edition Bickersteth's).
In 1880, one of the most pleasing gifts to the Church was the Children's Gift. Our beautiful brass Lectern, costing £70, was given by the children, and round it run the words: "Suffer the little children to come unto Me, and forbid them not, for of such is the Kingdom of God." But they collected nearly £60 more than this, so on Whit-Sunday, 1881, appeared a new Pulpit, round the base of which run the words : "Presented with the Lectern by the Teachers and Scholars of the Schools and the Younger Members of the Congregation, in commemoration of the Centenary of Sunday Schools, on the occasion of the Re-opening of the Church, December 6th, 1880."
The Parish Magazine for January, 1881, exclaims : "What can be more gratifying to those who have spent much time and trouble in carrying out extensive alterations in a Church on behalf of a congregation than to hear on its completion the one voice of all declaring the work to be well done, and a great success? Such we believe to be the case with Holy Trinity! We have not heard a dissentient voice, all with one consent have expressed their great satisfaction with the alteration."
We agree with them.
The total cost amounted to a large sum — I cannot discover how much — and the debt was not cleared off till 1884, strenuous efforts having been made in 1883.
The year 1884 was notable for the deaths of three most valued supporters of the Church and its work — Mr. James Robinson, who died suddenly on January 24th — Miss Bywater, a devoted Sunday School Teacher and District Visitor for over 20 years — and Mrs. John Allen, who at the ripe age of 81 died on December 23rd. Of the first and third of these the Church possesses very substantial memorials.
Mr. James Robinson, when he was 3 years old, received his first prize as a Sunday Scholar, when the Sunday Schools were held in the Room over the Stables at Greenhead. Then he attended at the Cholera House — then at Portland Street Schools, when Portland Street was Dyke End Lane, and you had to jump over the dyke. He became a Teacher, and at the age of 24, in 1855, he was appointed Superintendent of the Morning Sunday School, and from that time to his death, i.e., for 29 years, he continued to fill the office with the greatest diligence, punctuality, and zeal. It was he, who in 1874, commenced a small Afternoon School at Marsh (the district which always occupied, perhaps, the warmest corner in his heart). We may call him the Founder of Marsh Sunday School. From the opening of the Marsh Memorial School in 1865, he took the deepest interest in the Services held there, and was always present as leader in the Choir. Nothing but illness or absence from home could keep him from the Service either on Sunday or Thursday. He used also to conduct Cottage Meetings in his own house, No. 1, Gledholt Road. He was buried at Lindley Church, the Church Committee, Sunday School Teachers and Scholars, and many others meeting at Marsh School and joining the funeral procession there.
It was soon evident that many wished for a permanent memorial of such a faithful worker. Mrs. John Allen led with £100, and the total given was £280. It was decided to place a Clock in the Church Tower. On August 27th, 1884, a Special Service was held, when Mr. Thomas Allen set the Clock in motion. The Sermon was preached by the Rev. H.H. Rose. The dials are 7ft. 6in. in diameter. The new bell, which was hung at this time — there being only one before — weighs 8½ cwts.
On December 23rd, 1884, Mrs. Allen died at 81 years of age. The Rev. T.H. Sharpe, writing in the Parish Magazine, said : "We have lost one who, we can say without fear of being thought to speak disparagingly of others, has done more for our Church and all connected with it than any other person. She was ever forward with her money in every good cause, though so unostentatious that her name often was not allowed to appear, so anxious was she not to let her left hand know what her right hand did ; and though for some years through sickness she was unable to take any active part in the work, nevertheless she took the keenest interest in every agency, and when she could not personally help to take part in the battle, she, like Moses on the mount, continually held up her hands in supplication to God for His blessing on those in the valley beneath."
Let us recall some of the most important gifts of Mrs. Allen for the good of Holy Trinity Church :—
It was inevitable that in spite of the severe drain upon them for the last four years, the congregation should desire to place in the Church a conspicuous Memorial of such a Benefactress. It was decided to put stained-glass in the East Window. Several still remember with some affection the ivy trailing across the old plain window and the twittering of the sparrows which made their nests there. But we are all glad that we have such a suitable Memorial of this Saint of God, who must have been like a mother to the Church. The Artists were Messrs. A.O. Hemming & Co., London — the subject being, in the upper part The Ascension, and in the lower the words of our Lord : "I was an hungred and ye gave me meat : I was thirsty, and ye gave me drink : I was naked, and ye clothed me : I was sick, and ye visited me : I was in prison, and ye came unto me." (St. Matt. xxv. 35, 36.) The Inscription at the bottom of the window runs : "To the Glory of God and in memory of Sarah Allen, sister-in-law of the Founder of this Church, this window was erected by the Congregation and other Friends in loving appreciation of her devotion and self-denying acts of charity, during a long life in the Parish. Born March, 1803. Died December 23rd, 1884."
The window was unveiled on Thursday, December 17th, 1885, by Mr. William Brooke, and the Rev. J.W. Bardsley, Vicar of Huddersfield, preached. The Service was held at 12 o'clock, and was followed by a luncheon at Portland Street School at which 134 sat down. The Services were continued on the Sunday, when the Vicars of Huddersfield, Honley, and Paddock preached. The cost of the window was £430, and the receipts on the occasion of the unveiling completed the amount required.
One member of Mrs. Allen's family remained — Mr. Thomas Allen, who is remembered by many. He was unable to take up any business or profession, but he was known to all as a kindly visitor and friend. He died in South Africa at Cape Town in 1899, aged 73 years.
The Family Tablet is on the North wall of the Chancel near the East end "Sacred to the memory of John Alien, late of Gledholt, who entered into rest, January 7th, 1830, aged 35 years. Also of Sarah, daughter of John and Sarah Allen, who departed this life January 29th, 1843 (at Chapel Hill). Also of Hannah, daughter of John and Sarah Allen, who departed this life July 28th, 1863 (at Scarborough). Also of Sarah Allen, who died at West Place, on the 23rd December, 1884, aged 81 years (widow of the above John Allen). Also of Thomas, son of John and Sarah Allen, who died at Cape Town, March 14th, 1899, aged 73 years. Jesus my Saviour. Complete in Him."
In 1884 a very great improvement was made at the East end of the Churchyard. Before this the Churchyard ended on the East side with a wall which all the way was in a straight line with the wall of Back Wentworth Street. The path which goes along the South side of the Church, instead of bending towards the N.E. and N. as it does now, went straight on till it descended into Back Wentworth Street by what the Parish Magazine calls a "chimney-like alley, and dark break-leg steps at the end thereto." We can imagine what an immense improvement it was when the Churchyard was extended to Wentworth Street, the new steps were made leading down straight from the East end of the Church, and the handsome Lych Gate was built. For some reason or other the cost of this fine improvement was not readily met, as the following account published near the end of 1886 will show :—
|Expenses||£ s. d.|
|To Ramsden Estate — for Ground||50 0 0|
|Lych Gate||29 15 6|
|Alteration of Steps, &c.||14 5 5|
|Carting Soil||2 2 0|
|Stones for Rockery||1 12 0|
|Total||£97 14 11|
|Receipts||£ s. d.|
|The late Mrs. Allen||50 0 0|
|Nine other Contributors||9 5 0|
|"A Sincere Lover of Honesty"||33 9 11|
|Total||£97 14 11|
About the same time funds were being raised for a Warming Apparatus for Marsh Memorial School and a Harmonium at Portland Street School for the Sunday School.
The Parish Magazine for August, 1886, records these two deaths side by side :—
Both had been valued and beloved workers for Trinity Church during their respective times at the Vicarage.
In September, 1886, a new staircase was built for Portland Street Schools. I am not sure to which this refers. It was not the outside staircase. The bridge from the Infants' School to the Girls' School was made in the sixties. I think this new staircase must have replaced an inferior one in the Infants' School.
The following were Churchwardens during Mr. Sharpe's Vicariate :— Messrs. W.W. Cliffe, J. Wilkinson, S.F. Battye, Wm. R. Middlemost, F. Butterworth, J.H. Sykes, E.T. Sykes, James Drake, H.D. Taylor, J. Sugden, B. Alison, B. Schofield, Dunnerdale.
The Rev. T.H. Sharpe's health had been failing for some time, and he determined to resign his charge. A Commission sat after some delay — allowed the resignation — and accorded the retiring Incumbent a Pension from the living. The resignation took effect on October 15th, 1886. It was decided to make a Presentation to him from the Congregation. Finding difficulty in selecting a suitable expression for their Testimonial, they presented a note for £100. To the Rev. C.M. Sharpe, the active and popular Curate, several presentations were made. In March, 1887, he also received from the Congregation a model of Holy Trinity Church (beautifully made by Mr. Robinson, a member of Mr. Mason's Bible Class) originally purchased by the parishioners for their late esteemed Vicar. The Rev. C.M. Sharpe left Huddersfield to be Curate of Tankersley, and in 1888 he was presented to the Vicarage of Elsecar.
The Rev. T.H. Sharpe on his resignation took a house at Gledholt and went to reside there, but he died suddenly in November, less than a month from the date of his resignation, and was buried in Trinity Churchyard, near the main entrance gates. He was 69 years of age. His Vicariate of 15 years had witnessed an immense amount of earnest, devoted, spiritual work, and also very great changes and improvements in the Church and its Services, and in the Churchyard.
The eighth Incumbent was the Rev. Edward Markby, M.A., who was presented to the living by Simeon's Trustees.
The new Vicar entered upon his duties on October 17th, 1886, and was formally inducted at a public Service on October 30th. For the benefit of those who do not know how Vicarages are kept in repair, I would explain that when a Living is vacated by Death or by Resignation or by Preferment, the Parsonage House, if there is one, is, by order of the Bishop, inspected by the Diocesan Surveyor, who reports all dilapidations, and draws up a Schedule of the structural repairs which he considers necessary, and estimates the cost of them. The outgoing Vicar, or, if he has died, his representative, has to pay that cost. The incoming Vicar has to see the repairs carried out, and the Diocesan Surveyor inspects them, and if satisfied gives a Certificate which covers the next five years. You observe that legally the Clergy themselves are responsible for the upkeep of Parsonage Houses. With regard to interior painting, papering, decoration, &c., each Incumbent can do just as much or as little as he likes, and of course he pays for it. When Mr. Markby was about to enter Trinity Vicarage the Bishop's Surveyor and the Borough Health Inspector independently made surveys of its sanitary condition, and reported it most defective and highly injurious to health. The matter was brought before the Church Committee. They at once decided to make an appeal to the Congregation. This met with an immediate and generous response, the subscriptions amounting to £61 16s. 6d.
In February, 1888, a Memorial Window to the late Vicar, the Rev. T. H. Sharpe, was completed. Mr. I. Hordern originated the idea and obtained the subscriptions. The Window was designed and executed by Messrs. A.O. Hemming & Co., the same firm to which the East Window had been entrusted. In the estimation of those who knew Mr. Sharpe, the subject in this case was not so happily chosen. The Memorial is 14 the portion of the three-light Eastern-most window showing under the Gallery on the South side of the Nave." The design comprehends three figures of the Archangels. Running through the base is the following inscription :—"To the Glory of God and in memory of Thomas Henry Sharpe, for 15 years Vicar of this Parish, this Window was erected 1888."
In this same year further important work was carried out in the Church.
It will be remembered that the great improvements made in the Church in 1880 did not touch the Galleries. Mr. Markby set to work to collect subscriptions for completely reorganising the Galleries. It was considered advisable to take the opportunity of cleansing and re-painting the Church — and then it was discovered that certain portions of the roof were affected by dry-rot. The Church was closed for the month of July, and the following work was done with Messrs. John Kirk and Sons as Architects :—
The Church was re-opened on Wednesday, August ist, 1888. There was a large congregation. The Bishop of New Westminster (Dr. Sillitoe) read the Lesson, and the Bishop of Wakefield preached. On the Thursday evening the Bishop of New Westminster preached. On the Sunday morning and evening the Preacher was the Rev. Canon Wilkinson, D.D., Rector of Birmingham. The total of the collections for the Re -opening Services was £69 9s 7d.
By means of a vigorous canvass carried out early in the next year by members of the Church Council the debt was cleared off, and on August 8th, 1889, the last payment was made. The total cost of all this work was £878 17s. 9½d.
The visit of Bishop Walsh am How to re-open our Church must have been one of his earliest engagements as Bishop, for on October 23rd, 1888, a Public Meeting of Churchpeople was held in the Town Hall to bid farewell to Bishop Boyd Carpenter, who was our Bishop until the See of Wakefield was taken out of Ripon : and also to welcome Bishop Walsham How as the first Bishop of Wakefield.
I will gather here various gifts to the Church and improvements made during Mr. Markby's Vicariate.
Let me say here a few words about the development of the Parish.
I mentioned in a former Lecture that the Greenhead Estate was bought by Sir John W. Ramsden in 1848. Part of it was built upon. Then in 1870, Alderman Thomas Denham became tenant of the land forming a portion of Greenhead Park, and allowed the public access to it. But for this action of his it might have been built over. The Park was purchased by the Corporation in 1881, laid out as a Public Park, and opened in 1884.
Gledholt Road was mostly built in the Seventies. "Woodland Mount" by its name indicates the fact that a wood stretched from its western end to near the Junction Inn, Gledholt, and down between Gledholt Road and the Park. In earlier days this was a dark and lonely part of the road.
We turn our eyes now towards the District of Marsh, and trace developments there.
Marsh Memorial School, you will remember, had been built in 1865. What we call the Babies' Classroom was not erected till 1894. So, at the beginning of Mr. Markby's Vicariate, Marsh was growing, and the only building for Church purposes was Marsh Memorial School, without the Class rooms. There were very earnest and active workers there, among whom may be mentioned Mrs. J. H. Sykes, who held the Mothers' Meeting in the Conservative Club, and Miss Maude Middlemost, who superintended the Girls' Sunday School, played the Harmonium at the Services and trained the Choir, &c. There was a strong desire that something more should be done for Marsh, and one idea was to build a Church and form a new parish.
On Saturday, May 18th, 1889, a Sale of Work was held in the Memorial School to provide a new Harmonium. It was a great success, realising about £53, so that a fine Harmonium was bought for £39, and a balance of £11 was placed in the bank and credited to "The Marsh Fund." From the year 1887 during the winter months a Fortnightly Sewing Meeting and Tea was held in the Marsh Conservative Club-rooms. Orders were taken and work executed, and in January, 1890, a balance of about £60 was in the bank, as a nucleus for a proposed new Church at Marsh. On November 14th and 15th, 1890, a Sale of Work was held in the Memorial School on behalf of this Fund, and added a clear £115 13s. 10d. to it.
In April, 1891, Marsh lost the valuable help of Miss Maude Middlemost, owing to the removal of the family to Birchencliffe. Other able helpers were found to take up the different portions of her work.
Then a new development came about. On October 12th, 1891, a Meeting was held in the Memorial School to consider the advisability of erecting a Parish Room at Marsh. The Vicar explained the need for one, first, for the Sunday School (as a room had to be engaged elsewhere every Sunday for the elder girls) ; 2nd, for the Mothers' Meetings ; 3rd, for temperance, tea, and other meetings on week-days. "The Vicar said that some were more desirous of a Church being built, but as he felt that would be better managed by including the other Parishes interested in its erection, he refused to be responsible for starting so great an effort. Moreover, he thought that as long as Holy Trinity Church has room enough and to spare, the need for a Church was not as pressing as for a Parish Room. In addition, even if the Church was built, it would not meet the above stated needs." The meeting took a similar view, and unanimously decided to make an effort to erect a Parish Room. Working parties were started to work for it.
In November, 1891, Mr. I. Hordern offered the Committee a wooden building which he was about to put up, just behind the Marsh Memorial School, to be purchased for £200, with a pepper-corn ground rent, — the building would be 70 feet by 30 feet, and varnished internally, — the purchasers to arrange for the furnishing, lighting and heating. The offer was gratefully accepted.
There was naturally a somewhat strong difference of opinion between the supporters of a Church for Marsh and the supporters of a Parish Room. Mr. Hordern explained that he had a great desire for a Church, but saw the need of the Parish Room, and promised £10 10s. 0d. towards it, hoping that the erection of the Parish Room would prepare the way for the building of the Church. Mrs. J. Sykes, who was most anxious to have a Parish Room, promised £10 10s. 0d. towards the proposed Church.
On Saturday Evening, April 30th, 1892, the Parish Room was opened by Mr. J.A. Brooke, J.P. First there was a Tea, of which a large number partook. Then the room was crowded to excess to witness the Opening Ceremony, and to enjoy the presentation of the programme which had been arranged. Service was held in the New Room for the first time the next day, Sunday, May 1st, 1892.
This is how it was paid for :—
The total receipts were £660, which enabled the Committee to pay for the Room, Lighting, Heating and Furnishing, and also to purchase £190 Huddersfield Corporation Stock, the annual interest of which was "to be devoted towards the expenses of the building, as long as it remains connected with Holy Trinity Parish."
What about the proposed Church? The proposal, we must remember, was to form a new Parish, taking a large portion from Holy Trinity, and portions from Lindley and Paddock. Sir J. W. Ramsden promised a site for the Church and Parsonage near the Huddersfield Laundry. Mr. Markby, as we have seen, refused to be responsible for starting so great an effort," which moreover affected other parishes. Consequently, in 1892, the Vicar of Huddersfield, the Rev. Canon Bardsley, issued a circular appealing for promises and subscriptions for building a Church and endowing it. That would mean a large sum of money. About £2,000 were promised. Then the appeal seems not to have been pressed. At all events, after 1893 nothing more was done. The Sewing Meetings, which had been held 1887 to 1892, handed over £188 18s. 4d. to the late E. Armitage, Esq., Treasurer of the proposed New Church at Marsh. Someone else paid £100 to the Fund (no one now knows who it was). That £288 has been standing in the Bank at compound interest, and now amounts to about £450.
If Marsh was growing at the beginning of Mr. Markby's Vicariate, it was growing much more rapidly at the end of it, and at the beginning of his successor's time, for here are the figures of the Census for the whole Parish of Holy Trinity. In 1881, 4,725. 1891, I do not know. In 1901, 5,363, so that in 20 years the increase had been only 638. In 1911, 6,348, showing on increase in 10 years of 985. These increases are almost entirely in Marsh.
In 1896, the first Marsh Congregational Shrove-tide Tea and Entertainment was held with great success. This affected attendance at the Annual Congregational Easter Tea and Meeting at Portland Street School, and in 1900 that Tea was dropped, and a Parochial Business Meeting held without it, the result being that gentlemen predominated, only three ladies being present, whereas gentlemen had been somewhat scarce.
In 1897, a very useful new room (the Sewing Meeting Room) was added to the Parish Room, — Mrs. J. H. Sykes and Mrs. H. Beardsell undertaking to raise sufficient funds to pay for it. This was done by holding a Sale of Work at Bryancliffe, of which the receipts were £51 13s. 9d.
In 1898, someone anonymously presented to the Parish Room a handsome carved Oak Glastonbury Chair and Oak Reading Desk to match.
The profits of the Marsh Congregational Tea in 1901, were used to purchase Choir Desks for the Parish Room.
In 1901, Electric Light was installed.
Since then the Marsh Mothers have provided Linoleum for the Sewing Meeting Room, excellent Crockery, new Chairs, &c., out of the profits of their Entertainments.
We must trace now briefly the fortunes of our National Schools.
All Clergy and Managers whose experience of Church Day Schools extends to the years before the Education Act of 1902, remember the constant struggle with finance. This parish shared in that experience. When Mr. Markby became Vicar, he found the Schools in a very satisfactory condition except in this one point of finance. In 1887 a special effort was made to wipe off a debt and to have some working capital. By the end of April, £364 had been obtained, £153. of which was by a Sale of Work.
The Vicar invited Mr. J.B. Green (H.M.I.), to be present at an Entertainment with Prize Distribution on May 18th, 1887. Mr. Green, in his reply regretting his inability to attend, wrote "Your Schools are worthy of all the support the Managers have asked for them. They are thoroughly efficient in every respect, their position at the present time being unique in so far as the Church Schools in this district are concerned. No Church School of three departments has hitherto obtained the excellent merit all round as yours has done, a fact which fully establishes the good reputation the Holy Trinity Schools have been gaining for several years past. I most heartily congratulate the Managers and Teachers on the excellent results they have achieved."
In 1890, though all three schools continued to obtain the Excellent Merit Grant, the number of scholars attending the Portland Street Boys' School was gradually diminishing, and simply in consequence of this the Grant had fallen from £295 in 1887-8 to £203 in 1889-90. The attendance at Marsh School had increased, so that the Grant in the same period had grown from £62 to £81.
In the summer of 1890 there were important changes in the Staff at Portland Street. Mr. Pipes, B.A., who had been very successful as Head Master of the Boys' School, went to Hull, and was followed by Mr. S. Fletcher, one of whose testimonials said : "Mr. Fletcher's teaching is intelligent and productive of intelligence in his pupils. A great feature in his teaching is the remarkable hold he has on the affections of his pupils." Mr. Fletcher was chosen out of 230 applicants. A few months later Miss Vasey, the Head Mistress of the Girls' School, was succeeded by Miss A. Mellor. In the same year an Assistant Master and an Assistant Mistress left. It was trying under such circumstances to have a new Government Inspector with new methods and a new Education Code. But the new Staff came through very well, and maintained the good name. Unhappily, the numbers at Portland Street continued to diminish.
In 1891, another Special Appeal had to be made to reestablish the finances. £135 was subscribed, which wiped out deficiencies and left a reserve fund of £78.
Marsh Memorial School, which had been under Miss Robinson as Head-mistress since 1884, obtained the Higher Merit Grant for efficiency. Here is a summary of the Inspector's Report : "This is a very pleasing Infants' School. The children, being well trained from the first in the habit of attention, are easily taught, and make good progress."
In 1891 the Free or Assisted Education Act was passed. Financially this was of some assistance to Marsh School, but not to Portland Street. It enabled the Managers to abolish School Pence for all children under Standard III. Those above Standard II. were to be charged a penny a week.
As all the Board Schools in Huddersfield at once became Free, the attendance at Portland Street probably suffered further diminution on this account. In 1892, a General Parochial Meeting was convened by the Managers to consider the situation. Apparently there was some feeling that the Managers might have managed better, though it is doubtful whether there was any justification for it. It was decided that the Church Council should constitute the Managing Committee of the Schools with power to add to the number of the Committee.
Steps were taken to convert Portland Street School into a Mixed School. The plan was sanctioned by the Education Department, and an outer staircase in the Boys' School Yard had to be erected, so as to afford separate entrances for boys and girls, who are allowed, by the Code, to mix only inside the School. The new Scheme came into operation in August, 1892.
The next year, 1893, brought further heavy demands. The Education Department reported that various alterations must be made.
To meet the expenses a Sale of Work was held on December 1st & 2nd, 1893, in the Parish Room, resulting (with donations amounting to £40) in the sum of £400 17s. 7d. Of this, £68 went in erecting the new Staircase at Portland Street and towards Mission Street, Marsh ; £224 for new Class-room and Furniture at Marsh ; £28 10s. to the Churchwardens for the Church ; and £85 estimated expenses for pointing the Church.
It is well to remember that this Sale of Work took place only 14 months after the Bazaar for the Parish Room, which had raised £475.
But in 1894 Managers had to set forth the Financial condition of the Schools again and appeal for £220 to wipe off their immediate deficiency, chiefly on account of improvements, — and also to point out that they must look forward to an annual deficit of £43. It seems that the £220 was raised in a few months by special donations.
In 1896, all the Schools — Portland Street and Marsh — obtained excellent Reports and the Principal Grant, and in the following year the Reports were still better. Yet the Vicar had to complain that the numbers at Portland Street were still diminishing. This, however, was the case with all Huddersfield Schools owing to a decrease in the birth-rate.
In 1897 there was a new Education Act to relieve necessitous Schools by special aid grants. I suppose this was some help to our Schools, yet there continued to be an annual deficit of about £50, so that by 1901 there was an accumulated debt of £378, though £100 from Government Grant was due towards that.
In 1901 a most interesting and creditable achievement in the raising of money for Church and Schools took place. At the end of 1900 the Church Council decided to recommend that £1,200 be raised and allocated as follows :— Schools, £500 ; Church Needs (consisting of Roof, New Boiler, Cleaning and Painting, Electric Light, and Expenses,) £700. It was decided to open a Subscription List, and also prepare for a Bazaar. Shortly afterwards the Vicar received a letter from Mr. Alfred Kaye, enclosing two cheques for £25 each from himself and his wife, saying that they preferred to give thus than take part in the Bazaar. The letter suggested that others might like to do the same, so that instead of incurring the heavy expenses of a Bazaar in the Town Hall, a smaller Bazaar in the Parish Room or Parochial Hall might suffice. The Vicar consequently approached several members of the Congregation to see what they felt, with the result that in January he was able to announce to a Congregational Meeting that £872 had been promised, whereupon the Bazaar was given up. The Vicar continued his canvass and by this means obtained £1,065. As this did not quite meet the whole need, a Sale of Work was held in the Parish Room on Feb. 20th and 21st, 1903. £250 was asked for, and £449 12s. 11d. were the gross receipts.
To return to the Schools. In 1903 Mr. Balfour's Education Act of 1902 came into force, and our Schools ceased to be a constant strain upon us. Heavy demands came only in the way of improvements to the Buildings. But this history which is typical of hundreds of National Schools shows how nobly Church people supported their Schools in the past.
Miss Robinson is still with us, having been Head Mistress of Marsh Memorial School since 1884 ; and Mr. S. Fletcher is still with us, having been Head Master of Portland Street School since 1890.
It is time now to refer to Mr. Markby's Assistant Curates.
In January, 1887, the Rev. H.H. Ashley Nash, B.A., of Queen's College, Cambridge, came as Curate, after serving a two years' Curacy at Cullompton, near Exeter. He remained five years, and besides parochial work acted as Clerical Secretary of the C.E.T.S. for the Rural Deanery, and of the Church Institute. On his leaving to become Association Secretary of the Society for promoting Christianity among the Jews, at the end of 1891, he received four presentations, including a purse of 30 guineas from the congregation.
After being five months without a Curate, Mr. Markby welcomed as his colleague in April, 1892, the Rev. H. Brownrigg, B.A., of St. Catharine's College, Cambridge, who had served his first Curacy of 2¼ years at All Souls', Halifax. After 3½ years he was offered a kind of sole charge at Sandal, near Wakefield. On his leaving in September, 1895, received various presentations, including a Purse of Gold (£43) from the Congregation. As there was an interval of three months before a new Curate could enter upon his work, Capain Mulholland of the Church Army took up the work at Marsh for that period, and was much appreciated.
On December 21st, 1895, the Rev. W.S. Sherwen, B.A., of St. John's College, Cambridge, was ordained in Huddersfield Parish Church, with the Rev. Cyril Bardsley, son of the Vicar of Huddersfield, who is now Hon. Sec. of the C.M.S. in London. Mr. Sherwen was here 13! years, till October, 1909.
The people at Marsh at the end of 7 years spontaneously showed their appreciation of his work by presenting him with a handsome Clock and two fine bronze figures.
On June 16th, 1903, he was married to Miss J.D. Eastwood, and they received numberless presents including £100 from the Congregation.
The following served as Churchwardens between 1886 and 1904 :— Messrs. W. Storry, A. Jubb, J.T. Green, F. Butterworth, J.T. Smiles, J.O. Stock, B. Barraclough, J. Fisher, E. Rowbottom, S.H. Brierly, H.P. Bairstow, J. Pogson, and S. Russell.
During Mr. Markby's Vicariate two Special Ten Days' Missions were held.
The first was from Oct. 27th to Nov. 4th, 1889, the Missioner being the Rev. J.F. Kitto, M.A., Vicar of St. Martin's in the Fields, Charing Cross. The second was originally arranged for October, 1899, but owing to the illness of the Missioner it had to be deferred and was held from February 17th to 27th, 1900, the Missioner being the Rev. Foster Pegg, Vicar of St. Matthew's, St. Leonard's-on-Sea, who was assisted by Miss Bazett.
In 1897 Bishop Walsham How, the first Bishop of Wakefield, died, and the Rt. Rev. George Rodney Eden, who had been Bishop of Dover, Suffragan to the Archbishop of Canterbury, became Bishop of Wakefield.
An interesting development in our Church's support of Foreign Missionary Work must be recorded. During the Rev. T. H. Sharpe's Vicariate, Contributions to the C.M.S. had maintained an annual average of £160. From one reason or another this declined in the early part of Mr. Markby's time. I find that in 1897-8 the amount was about £90.
A small Annual Sale of Work at the Vicarage was begun in 1895, which has been carried on ever since with an average result of £30 to £35.
But in 1898 the Missionary interest of the Congregation was greatly increased by the fact that the Vicar's son, the Rev. F.E. Markby, went out to North India in connection with the C.M.S., and Miss Annie Graham, a former Sunday School Teacher, after working for two years as a Deaconess in Liverpool, was accepted by the C.M.S. for training for Missionary Work.
For some years past individuals, Congregations, or Associations have adopted certain Missionaries of the C.M.S. as "Our Own Missionary." That means that they have raised special contributions (from £50 to £100) towards his support, and maintained a special connection with him ; this proceeding has been most natural when the Missionary has been taken as "their own Missionary" by the Congregation to which he belonged.
In 1898 a member of the Congregation wrote to Mr. A.C. Sharpe, suggesting that the Vicar's son should be adopted by the Congregation as "Our Own Missionary" — offering £10 10s. 0d. per annum for five years anonymously, and a subscription of two or three guineas per annum independently. The letter was brought before the Church Council and the proposal adopted. The appeal was put in the Parish Magazine, and there has never been any personal solicitation for subscriptions to "O.O.M." Fund. In a few months £64 had been promised.
The Rev. F.E. Markby went out in the Autumn of 1898. Unfortunately he met with two difficulties — the first was fever, which necessitated his removal from his first Station — the second was the language, which eventually led him regretfully to resign his connection with the C.M.S. and take the Chaplaincy of Cochin, where the work would be in English.
The Subscribers at once adopted Miss Annie Graham as "Our Own Missionary." This was in May, 1903. Miss Graham had already passed her first Chinese Examination, having gone out to Hangchow in October, 1901. She has therefore completed twelve years' work. She came home on furlough in 1908, and her next furlough is due early next year. We are proud of her work and trust she may long be spared to carry it on. May the Parish continue to support her heartily by prayers and gifts.
Here I must bring my History somewhat abruptly to a close. I do not profess to have said anything about the last ten years. When I began looking up the history of the Church, I had no idea of going to this length, or of giving a Lecture, much less three Lectures. The preparation has taken a great deal of time, but I feel it has been justified.
First, because it is good to have a record such as this kept in a Church's Archives, and I have gathered material about the early days which the passage of another ten years might have made more difficult to obtain.
Secondly, because I feel it has done me good in drawing me closer to the Church and Parish. I feel I know it a deal better than I did before.
Thirdly, I hope the history will stimulate us all to carry on earnestly, devotedly, and vigorously the good work of our Church and Parish as Clergy and Laity have in the past. And may God be with us as He was with them.