SOME ACCOUNT OF THE PARISH CHURCH OF ST. MARY'S, HONLEY.
BY MRS MARY A. JAGGER, Honley, Authoress of 'Rookery Mill,' 'Is Love a Crime?' etc., etc.
Churchwardens of Honley.
The duty of keeping in order the unruly spirits of the village, now performed by policemen, then fell to the lot of the constables and churchwardens. Under the head of 'Extracts from the Parish-book,' some of these duties are enumerated. They were many and varied.
It was a weekly custom to visit the extreme ends of the three parishes — Honley, Netherthong, and Crosland — for the purpose of putting a stop to Sunday drinking out of the prescribed hours, and other misdemeanours of a like kind. Their shadows almost served to frighten away all children at play during divine service, as well as other Sabbath breakers of a larger growth.
Our modern teaching has developed the greatest contempt for the 'man in blue ;' so how would the village constables and churchwardens fare now-a-days?
On Honley Feast Sunday the churchwardens made a continual circuit of the village ; also carrying their staves of office. Their presence might have had the effect of restraining undue excitement on the part of those who came in large numbers to the bull-baiting that took place at the feast time.
On every Easter Sunday it was also the custom of the Honley churchwardens to proceed to Almondbury. Along with other churchwardens from neighbouring parishes, they walked in procession around the ancient village, also carrying their staves of office. I am not sure if the sight of these staves had the same overawing effect upon the minds of the natives of Almondbury as upon those of Honley. As there is safety in numbers, the churchwardens preferred to return home like dogs hunt — in couples. Such was the benighted state of Almondbury, at that time, that few could pass through a certain old lane, chiefly inhabited by bird-fanciers and out-weavers, without being subjected to rough usage.
The names may recall the memory of many an old Honley worthy.
1685, Will-Brooke de Honley (he signed the terrier of Honley and Meltham Chapels) ; 1746, William Brooke ; 1747-48, John Cockin ; 1750, John Sykes, Wood-bottom ; 1751-5, William Crossley ; 1756 8, Emmanuel Bothomley, Gynn ; 1759, Richard Armitage, Hall Ing ; 1760-1, Joseph Moorhouse ; 1762. John Lockwood, Brockholes ; 1763, Matthew Haigh, Ridings ; 1764, Joseph Walker ; 1765-6, Joseph Swallow, Oldfield ; 1767, Godfrey Berry, Deanhouse ; 1768, Richard Woffenden, Stag wood - bottom ; 1769-70, John Littlewood, Banks ; 1771-2, Jonathan Sanderson ; 1773-5, William Jagger ; 1776-7, Joseph Armitage ; 1778-80, Thomas Cockin ; 1781-3, George Armitage ; 1785-6, Benjamin Batley ; 1757,Matthew Kaye ; 1788-95. John Brooke ; 1796, Benjamin Townsend ; 1797, James Armitage ; 1798, Nathaniel Berry, Deanhouse ; 1799 1800, Joseph Woodhead, Thurstin ; 1801, William Brooke ; 1802-3, James Armitage, Reins ; 1804-14, Thomas Leigh, Top o’th Town ; 1815-16, Robert Bradley ; 1816-19, Joseph Armitage, High Royd ; 1820-21, Charles Littlewood ; 1822, Joshua Robinson ; 1823, Robert Robinson ; 1824, Joshua Charlesworth, who died in office. He was succeeded by Thomas Sanderson until 1828. 1828, George Jessop ; 1829, John Littlewood ; 1830-1, Thomas Brooke ; 1832-3, Thomas Hallas ; 1834 5, John Dyson, Wood Nook ; 1836-7, William Wilkinson ; 1838, George Beaumont ; 1839, Richard Haigh was chosen, but refused to serve ; 1840-4, James Stocks ; 1845 6, Godfrey Drake ; 1847, James Haigh ; 1848*59, William Wilkinson ; 1856, William Wilkinson and Joseph Whitworth ; 1858, George W. Farrar ; 1859, William Wilkinson ; 1860-64, Joseph Hirst ; 1865, Joseph Hirst and Joseph Waite ; 1866, Joseph Hirst and George Wm. Farrar ; 1867, William Wilkinson and George Wm. Farrar ; 1868-9, William Wilkinson ; 1870. Alfred Beaumont and William Wilkinson ; 1871-4, James F. Lunn and Alfred Beaumont ; 1875-6, James F. Lunn and Lupton Littlewood ; 1877, James F. Lunn and Richard Littlewood ; 1878-80, James F. Lunn and Thomas Farrar ; 1881, James F. Lunn and James Mellor ; 1883, James Beaumont and George Wm. Farrar ; 1884-5, George Wm. Farrar and James Mellor ; 1887 6, William Brooke and Samuel Jagger.
From an old Parish book. The entries are in the handwriting of John Brooke, chapelwarden ; and afterwards Thomas Leigh, chapelwarden.
|July||31||To a treat when Marsden organist and singers came to Honley||0||5||0|
|Aug||7||My expenses going to Crossland and Blackmoorfoot||0||10||0|
|To Mr Armitage for his journey to York||1||11||6|
|Dec.||25||Our singers' Christmas box||0||5||0|
|March||2||To clerk half-year's wages||0||7||6|
|To sexton half-year's wages (Duties or else payment must have been very light)||0||4||6|
|April||4||Our share of a new surplice||0||15||8|
|June||17||To Mr Alexander for his journey to York||2||12||6|
|Sept.||23||Treating a fresh minister, Mr Amerton||0||1||0|
|30||Treating afresh minister.Mr Armistead||0||1||0|
|Mar.||17||Treating Mr Bellas, minister||0||1||0|
|20||Joshua Moorhouse and self journey to York to give instructions for having answers to Dyson's allegations. Leeds for horses, turnpike, and hostler||0||2||3|
|For one dinner and liquor||0||3||2|
|Coach hire from Leeds to York||0||14||0|
|Spent at the top of Bramham Moor||0||0||9|
|Spent at Tadcaster||0||1||0|
|Paid our expenses at York||2||11||0|
|Coach hire from York to Leeds||0||14||0|
|Spent at Tadcaster and Bramham Moor||0||1||0|
|Gave coachman at Leeds||0||2||10|
|Paid at Robert-Town for dinners||0||2||0|
|A quart of ale at Huddersfield (Shall not give any more exiracts of journies to York, as they are numerous and similar to the foregoing)||0||0||4|
|Mar.||24||Treat for Mr Pattison||0||1||0|
|31||Washing surplice for one year||0||1||0|
|My expenses at Almondbury on Easter-Day||0||2||0|
|April||1||Chusiug new chapel warden||0||1||0|
|3||Letting Abraham Shaw spout-making for chapel. Gave him in earnest||0||1||2|
|June||17||To Christopher Sanderson, docking in the chapel-yard||0||4||0|
|Paid for new Bible||1||4||10|
|July||22||Wine fetching and bread from Almondbury||0||4||6|
|Sept.||1||My journey to Netherthong with other chapelwardens||0||1||0|
|April||25||Paid as per bill belonging to pulpit shifting||0||16||7|
|Expenses on Easter Sunday at Almondbury||0||2||0|
|On Monday chasing chapelwarden||0||4||0|
|May||18||Paid at my footing||0||1||0|
|Oct.||12||A treat for Mr Sedgwick||0||1||0|
|Nov.||12||Paid at a meeting of the chapelry about two pews||0||7||6|
|April||1||Sexton for one year bell-ringing||0||9||0|
|Oct.||5||Treating Mr Bellus twice||0||2||0|
|Treating different parsons||0||6||4|
|Aug.||11||Treating a strange minister, Mr Mason||0||1||0|
|Paid at my footing||0||4||6|
|Sept.||1||My journey to Netherthong with other chapelwardens||0||1||0|
|May||12||Postage for letters fiom York ever since troubles began||1||17||7½|
|Aug.||10||A treat to Mr Mason||0||1||0|
|17||A treat to Deanbead parson||0||1||0|
|23||A treat to Mr Sunderland||0||1||0|
|Aug.||20||To Wm. France teaching singers||0||10||6|
|Nov.||2||To Almondbury with a town apprentice||0||3||0|
|June||17||To three days taking account of corn||0||9||0|
|Sept.||6||A journey to Mytham Bridge to notice a woman out of the town||0||1||0|
|July||18||One day hiring Militia||0||5||0|
|Sept.||3||Expenses of bellman for 'crying Act of Parliament for army defence'||0||2||6|
|April||10||Myself and sexton dining at the 'George'||0||5||0|
|May||10||To bellwoman crying against profaning chapel-yard||0||0||4|
|Aug.||10||J. Donaldson's (of York) bill for repairing organ||132||16||6|
|(There are other items too numerous to copy, relating to the organ, amounting to upwards of)||50||0||0|
|A summons for Lockwood and Sons before George Armitage, Esq., to compel them to amend their work on the organ||0||1||0|
|Sept.||24||A pewter basin for christening||0||3||0|
|March||8||Messenger to Armitage Bridge for a certificate to sign for Recruits||0||1||0|
|7||Spent when re-chosen chapelwarden||0||1||0|
|Aug.||23||My attendance at Armitage Bridge to put out J. Bailey apprentice||0||2||0|
|April||2||Spent at Will Theater's by townspeople, at attendance at Vestry, to make me a chapelwarden. Being a large party, would have double allowance to oppose Crossland and Thong people||0||5||0|
|May||15||Journey to Linfit to consult Jonathan Sanderson as a witness in these suits||0||3||0|
|Oct.||23||Sent to J. Eastwood and Thomas Hobson, of Batley Carr, part expenses to York as evidence||2||2||0|
|27||Journey to Huddersfield to engage Nathaniel Berry as evidence||0||3||0|
|30||To give Nathaniel Berry backword that he was not to go to York||0||1||0|
|Nov.||12||Paid Honley's share for Robert Ludge making J. Haulkyard's cloaths and trimmings||0||14||0|
|April||10||Paid Mr Wrigley Honley's share of sexton's coat cloth||0||15||0|
|Aug.||8||Post carrying a petition to Archbishop, and booking at coach office||0||0||8|
|Posting of letter describing J. Sanderson a deserter||0||1||0|
|April||23||Remitted to Lister and Lawton the cost of suits against Crossland and Netherthong||214||7||7|
Copied from an old Parish book at Almondbury relating to Honley.
|Jany.||3||'At a meeting held in the Vestry of Almondbury, it was resolved that nine gallons of wine, and no more, should be allowed to the parish of Honley.'|
|July||28||Expenses at Honley for Mr Alexander and Richard Littlewood and myself when searching for the papers belonging to Free School||0||3||1|
|Expenses a second time going to Honley to Richard Littlewood in search of the Seal of the School||0||0||6|
|'William Haigh’s imprudence and misconduct hath caused some disputes in the parish ; the minister and chapel wardens of Honley desired the churchwardens to meet them at the house of Mrs Mellor, in Almondbury, on the 26th of December last, which request they complied with ; at which meeting the said chapel wardens of Honley declared their resolution of paying the several assessments made upon them for repairs, &c., towards the Parish Church into the Ecclesiastical Court at York, unless the officers then met would appoint some other persons to receive assessments, and lay out the necessary sums for repairs about the Church to better advantage, and they agreed to do so.'|
|April||11||To bread at Honley||0||0||4|
|Carriage of wine to Honley||0||0||2|
|Expenses of self to Honley||0||2||0|
|March||8||To wine to Hanley Chapel||8||2||0|
|Oct.||11||'A notice of meeting to be held in the Vestry of the Church on Thursday, the 23rd, at two in the afternoon, to take into consideration the propriety of allowing or disallowing the chapelwardens of Honley their expenses for going to York to oppose the intended improvements in the said Church.'|