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Vestry Meetings

Northampton Mercury, 12 April 1856

RUSHDEN—At a Public Vestry Meeting held on Thursday last, Mr. THOMPSON WYLDS and Mr. JOHN were Appointed SURVEYORS of the HIGHWAYS

The Northampton Mercury Saturday March 30th 1878, transcribed by Susan Manton

Fire Engine—There is now every probability of the long talk-talked of fire engine being purchased. Last year a committee was appointed to ascertain if the amount required could be raised by public subscription, aided by contributions from the fire assurance offices. That was found to be impracticable; and the committee then decided to recommend the committee then decided to recommend the vestry to obtain an engine under the provisions of the Lighting and Watching Act. Accordingly a resolution to that effect was submitted and unanimously adopted at a vestry held on the 21st instant and the fire engine committee being requested to act with the lighting inspector in carrying out the resolution.

The Northampton Mercury Saturday March 30th 1878, transcribed by Susan Manton

Parish Vestry March 31st—Messrs. Wilkins and S. Knight were elected overseers for the ensuing year and H. W. Currie esq. was elected waywarden. Mr. Currie being an ex officio waywarden, expressed a wish that some one else should be appointed, but in response to a very unanimous vote, he consented to be the representative of the parish at the highway board. A sum of £4 2s 3d in hand, from letting the village green and other sources was appropriated to the purchase of a clock for the vestry hall.

Northampton Mercury April 27th 1878, transcribed by Susan Manton

A Stormy Vestry Thursday

Rev. J. T. Barker, in the chair. Present: Mr. F. U. Sartoris and Mr. R. Butcher, churchwardens; Messrs. Wyldes, Mortimer, Mason G. H. Skinner, G. Denton, W. Wilkins; Rev. R. E. Bradfield; Messrs. W. Colson, W. Claridge, E. Knight, C. Cunnington, C. Sanders, D. Dickens, etc. Mr. R. O. Butcher said there was a balance due of £15. The chairman asked if any one would move that the accounts be passed, but no one made a proposition, and he proceeded to the next business – the election of church wardens. Mr. G. Denton proposed Mr. W. Wilkins, who said he should not act and should not have attended but for the injustice of the past churchwardens. (Mr. Sartoris: Question) The chairman said the business before the meeting was the election of a parish warden. Mr. Wilkins said he was speaking to the question. The Dissenters would not have attended if the churchwardens had not to do with the assessment of property in the parish. In that capacity they had re-assessed part of the property, but it was curious that the assessment of the property of the Church party had not been interfered with. As the churchwardens had acted so unfairly they had forfeited the confidence of the parish. He concluded by proposing Mr. Packwood. Mr. Colson seconded. He was sorry there was any necessity for Dissenters to be present; but their rights were being infringed. At a recent meeting he observed that two gentlemen were nominated as overseers. (The Chairman: Four) Well he contended the parish only nominated two. Mr. Wilkins obtained over 50 votes, and yet he was not appointed. (Cries of “Chair” and “Question”) It was the question. He should like to know the reason why the overseers were not appointed by the magistrates, but as they ignored the parish in the appointment of overseers, it followed that the parish in appointment of the overseers, it followed that the churchwardens were the only officers the parish could elect. (The Chairman: There are the guardians) Yes but they had no power over the assessment. Rev. R.E. Bradfield want to know what the duties of the churchwardens were? (The Chairman: It is not my duty to define them.) If their duty is to be confined to church affairs, then he should not attend at their election; but if they could alter the assessment then they should come and claim their right to a voice in their election. They cannot appoint the overseer, as was proved by the late election, for although Mr. Wilkins got so many votes, yet at Wellingborough where he (the speaker) understood there had been a special whip among the magistrates, his nomination was set aside. On those grounds e supported Mr. Packwood’s nomination. The Chairman: Everyone has a perfect right to vote for a warden, but there will be a poll.

Mr. Colson: We are prepared for that

The Chairman said, in reference to the appointment of overseers, it was not the custom of the magistrates always to take the two first on the list, but to have the rate book and to see that the person nominated was a substantial rate payer, as they did not think that a person paying rates for a £15 or £30 house should oversee a person assessed at £600 and that was, in his opinion, the reason why the appointment was vested in the magistrates. As regard the partial way in which the assessment was alleged to have been made, that was  mistake, as all they could do was to submit their views to the Assessment Committee, with whom rested the confirmation of it, or otherwise. The parties aggrieved could appeal. (A Voice: Shall we get justice). He thought his property was assessed too high, and he attended the committee and got justice done. It was a pity to raise this opposition, as, if there had been an injustice, the Assessment Committee would attend to it. Mr. Wilkins wanted to make a personal explanation, when Mr. Sartoris rose to order, and said he blamed the chairman, who, in kindness of his heart, ad allowed a desultory conversation. (Hear, hear). Mr. G. Denton said he would withdraw the proposition, if the churchwardens would pledge themselves not to interfere with the rating. (Hear, hear) Mr. Wilkins continued his explanation, and the chairman said, in reply, he did not mean that Mr. Wilkins was not a fit person for the office of overseer. After further discussion, the Chairman said they must either vote, or, as Mr. Denton suggested, agree to a compromise. Mr. Butcher said he did not interfere with the assessment, but it was brought to him and he was obliged to sign whether it was for one party or the other. Mr. Denton’s suggestion is that the parish warden will in no way interfere with the rate. You cannot compel Mr. Butcher (as he is the rector’s warden) to do either one way or the other. He had no doubt, if they had a poll, about the result, but if they could avoid it, it would be best, as it created ill feeling.

Mr. Wilkins: Mr. Sartoris practically appeals to himself being a magistrate.

Mr. Sartoris: Can I speak?

The Chairman thought not.

Mr. C. Sanders: Don’t you think that a supplementary assessment creates ill feeling? There are plenty of places that wanted some putting on.

Mr. S. Knight wanted to know how it was, if the list was a just one, and ought to be signed by both churchwardens, it was not also signed by both overseers, as it was not taken to him.

Mr. Wyldes: I called upon you several times, but they said you were ill.

Mr. Sanders: You never came to my place and I want to know how you could assess a place you never saw.

Mr. Wyldes: You ask your brother.

Mr. Butcher said he had nothing to do with it and he never knew what he signed. Mr. Colson said the list was an unjust document and they wanted a man who would act fairly Mr. S. Knight, junior, asked Mr. Sartoris if we was willing to pledge himself if he was elected that he would not interfere with the rate. Mr. Sartoris said that it was a matter that he did not want to interfere with; but as the Act of Parliament imposed a duty on him, he did not feel disposed, nor did he think he should be justified in accepting the office on such terms, neither did he think he should be doing right to those who might follow him in creating a precedent. Personally he should like to see the parish re-assessed. He had not tried to interfere with anyone, or make himself objectionable, but simply to do his duty. It was then suggested that Mr. Sartoris should not sign any list until it had the signature of both overseers, but that he also declined to do and then left the meeting. Mr. Colson asked whether, as Mr. Sartoris was willing for the parish to be re-assessed, it would not be well to order it, as then I would remove from any individual the possible allegation that he had caused the parish this expense. The Chairman said the meeting could not decide on such a question but he suggested that they might pass some such resolution as the following: “That, in the opinion of this meeting, it is desirable that steps should be taken to call a vestry to sanction a re-assessment of the parish” but no-one proposed it. After some discussion on a show of hands, 28 voted for Mr. Packwood and 15 for Mr. Sartoris. A poll was demanded by Messrs. S. Mason and W. Claridge on behalf of Mr. Sartoris. The Chairman proposed to take the poll on Thursday next.

Mr. Claridge: Then you will have plenty of time to canvas.

A Voice: They will not have to sign the papers.

The Chairman did not think there was any occasion for thus stirring up strife

Mr. Colson: It is your party that is doing it.

The Chairman: When all this commotion and ill will has subsided, each party can appeal to the parish as to which has been the most charitable. It was decided that the poll be taken from eleven till two and from six to eight on Thursday next, and the meeting terminated.

The Wellingborough News, 21st March 1885, transcribed by Gill Hollis

Vestry Meeting at Rushden

A special meeting was held on Thursday morning for the purpose of considering the taking over of Crabb-street, in Rushden, by the Irthlingborough District Highways Board, the owners having given notice to the above Board of their intention to dedicate the street to the use of the public. The clerk to that Board, in accordance with the Act, called a vestry meeting to consider if the road was of sufficient use to the parish to warrant it’s being taken to by the Board. There were present – the Rev. Canon Barker (in the chair), Mr. William Jackson (on behalf of the owners of the road), Mr. C. Matthews (on behalf of the clerk to the Highway Board), and Messrs. P. Cave, W. Wilkins, G. Perkins, E. Knight, J. Margetts, F. Knight, J. Darnell, W. Sargent, Wheeler, C. Cunnington, A. Gadsby, A. Corby, Burton, Mortimer, S. Knight, jun., Ward, Fountain, J. Sargent, W. Claridge, and Mr. and Mrs. Cuff. Mr. Jackson read the requirements of the Act, and Mr. W. Wilkins moved a resolution to the effect that the road was of sufficient utility to warrant them in adopting it as a parish road, as there was not a road for nearly half-a-mile to get back to the main street; and seeing that the owners had to keep it in repair for twelve months, all the extraordinary traffic would be over. The district roads only cost about £23 per mile, and as this road was only one-sixth of a mile in length, it would only cost the district £4. Mr. P. Cave seconded the motion, and it was carried nem con.

At the annual vestry for the election of a Way-warden, nomination of overseers, rating new property, &c., the same gentlemen attended, and some others, among whom were Messrs. Thomas Sanders, G. Skinner, &c. – The Chairman said the first business was to consider what, if any, alterations should be made in the letting of the vestry hall. Some considerable discussion ensued, some being of opinion that people using the room should be charged a sum for its use, others thinking it was the property of the ratepayers, and as only ratepayers used it, it should be free. It was urged that if a charge was made it would not amount to much in the year, and as it has been used ever since 1874 under the control of the overseers and churchwardens, it had better be left as it was. – Messrs. S. Knight, W. Wilkins, J. Higgins, H. Packwood, C. L. Bradfield and others spoke on the subject, and it was ultimately resolved to proceed to the next business. This was the proposed improvement in the widening and levelling of the road near the vestry hall. The committee appointed last year to carry out this improvement reported that they were not unanimous on the subject, and as it would cost more than was anticipated it was thought better to bring the matter again before the vestry. – In answer to Mr. Packwood, the chairman was understood to say it was in deference to the adverse opinion of some as to the necessity for doing the work that it had not been carried out. – Mr. Packwood thought that when anything was decided at a vestry meeting it was not right for one or two to overrule it. – This opinion was endorsed by several other gentlemen who spoke on the subject. – Mr. Ward said if it had been in any other part of the village it would have been done. – It was unanimously resolved that the resolution of the vestry of 1884 be carried out. – Messrs. Thomas Tailby and G. H. Skinner were nominated as overseers. – Canon Barker was unanimously re-elected way-warden. The rev. gentleman said that as way-warden he had been impugned by a certain gentleman, who was not at the meeting, or he should have been able to defend his conduct. – A lengthy discussion ensued as to the control the way-wardens or the ratepayers had over the men employed on the roads, and the expending of the money. – The Way-warden was strongly in favour of a Parochial Committee, similar to the Parochial Sanitary Committee, to assist the surveyor in looking after the roads. –In answer to Mr. Sanders, as to whether the way-warden could state the actual outlay on the roads in the parish, the rev. gentleman said he was not then able, but as soon as he had the amounts he would lay them before the vestry. – The next question was to consider a footpath from Duck Street to Wellingborough Road, which Mr. J. Higgins said was in a disgraceful state. – Messrs. G. Skinner, G. H. Skinner, H. Packwood, T. Wilmot, and others concurred as to the bad state of the footpath in question, and as it was used by large numbers of people the way-warden was directed to press the matter on the attention of the surveyor. The appointment of a committee to assist the overseers in rating new property resulted in the following being re-appointed: Messrs. G. Denton, W. Wilkins, W. Foskett, E. Knight, P. Cave, and Mortimer. Mr. H. Packwood asked if any steps had been taken to procure urban powers for Rushden. The Chairman and Mr. Knight explained what had been done in the matter. The latter said it was before the Rural Sanitary Authority on Wednesday, and doubtless a report on the subject would appear. The Local Sanitary Committee was appointed as follows:- W. Foskett, H. Packwood, P. Cave, J. Higgins, J. T. Barker, F. Knight, W. Claridge, S. Knight, jun., Mortimer, C. Bayes, J. Margetts, and C. Sanders. – Mr. H. Packwood asked how it was that they had to pay for the sewage cart, seeing the scavenging of the village cost £50 per annum. It was explained that the charge was allowed by the Rural Committee. Some conversation ensued as to the levelling of the green and the providing of a recreation ground for the parish. – Mr. T. Wilmot suggested the mode of carrying out the improvement and the following were appointed a committee to consider the propriety of selling the pound, improving the green, and providing a recreation ground or park for the people:- J. Higgins, W. Wilkins, C. Bayes, T. Wilmot, G. Perkins, F. Knight, H. Packwood, and P. Cave; the committee to report to a future meeting. On the proposition of Mr. H. Packwood, the overseers were requested in future to call vestry meetings at six o’clock in the evening; Mr. W. Claridge dissented, as he thought anyone who had any interest in the meeting would not mind losing an hour to attend. Mr. D. Dickens complained of his assessment, as he stated his rent had been reduced £30, and they had only reduced his assessment £7. It was explained he was assessed too low before. Mr. W. Chettle asked if it was the custom to assess property before it was finished or occupied. It was explained that the local assessment committee made a list every six months, and property that was very nearly completed was assessed, but no rate was charged until it was occupied. This completed the business, which had lasted two hours and a quarter.

The Wellingborough News, 11th April 1885, transcribed by Gill Hollis

Vestry Meeting at Rushden

The Easter vestry was held in the Vestry-hall on Thursday morning last, when about sixteen persons assembled, the Rector (Rev. Canon Barker) occupied the chair. The Chairman said the deficiency, of £55, reported at last year’s vestry was now, he was happy to say, cleared off, leaving a balance in hand of 13s 9d. – Mr. Butcher said he estimated the voluntary offertories to amount to about £40, a decrease of £2 on the preceding year. – It was decided on the motion of Mr. G. H. Skinner that the offertories are taken as usual, Mr. Woodward remarked upon the satisfactory result. The election of Churchwardens was next proceeded with, the Rector nominating Mr. Butcher as his warden, and Mr. F. U. Sartoris, J.P. being unanimously chosen as parish churchwarden. Messrs. G. H. Skinner, Woodward, Ginns, and Stevens were elected as sidesmen,and Messrs. Woodward and Stevens as representatives to the Ruri-decanal Conference. The Rector said that there had been no occasion hitherto to convene the Church Council appointed last year to consider matters of finance, but he expected to need their assistance in connection with the pointing of the spire, and hoped therefore they would be reappointed. A resolution to that effect was unanimously agreed to, on the motion of Mr. Stevens, seconded by Mr. Packwood. Referring to the dilapidated condition of the spire, the Rector reported that about a fortnight ago a huge stone, weighing perhaps 50 pounds, fell with a crash on the lead roofing. Since then a survey had been taken of the spire, and it was found to be about a foot out of the perpendicular in a portion of it. They were to have an estimate of the cost and the Council should be summoned to consider the matter. Mr. Higgins was quite of opinion that the work should be undertaken; it was a noble spire, and deserved all the workmanship they could bestow to maintain its beauty. The Rector remarked that he found out in the door of the tower, as he stepped out upon the battlements, that it was pointed in 1598, in 1620, and again in 1719, so that 166 years had elapsed since it was last repaired. Towards the cost of the repairs he had in hand about £30 surplus on the restoration fund. All present considered it advisable that the work should be done, and Messrs. J. Higgins, B. Mortimer, H. Carter, J. Brawn, C. Smart, C. H. Callaway, and C. Barker were appointed on the Church Council, in addition to the wardens, sidesmen, &c. At the conclusion of the ordinary business the Rector solicited remarks, and Mr. Higgins referred to the church clock being kept too fast. The Rector replied that as the clock belonged to the parish it was not particularly a church question, but that some representation of the complaint might be recorded. Mr. Higgins said he spoke as a parishioner, and he did not believe in a good thing being badly handled. The following resolution was then submitted and carried, on the motion of Messrs. Higgins and Skinner: “That it would be desirable that the church clock should be kept closely with Greenwich Time.” This concluded the business.

Wellingborough News, 25th March 1887, transcribed by Kay Collins

EASTER VESTRY— The annual Easter vestry, for the nomination of overseers, the appointment of way warden, the passing of the Parish and the Pound and the Green Committee's Accounts, and any other business, was held in the Vestry-hall on Tuesday evening. The vestry, as usual, attracted a good number of parishioners, among whom we noticed—Rev. Canon Barker, who presided, Rev. W. J. Tomkins, and Messrs B. Mortimer, H. Skinner, T. Sanders, C. Sanders, H. Packwood, W. Wilkins, W. Claridge, G. Denton, J. Cave, P. Cave, C. Bradfield, F. Knight, C. Bayes, T. Willmott, C. Hewitt, W., J., and J. T. Colson, J. C. Stevens, C. G. Cunnington, S. Knight, jun., N. Crick, W. Sargent, and others.—The Rector having read the notice calling the meeting, and the minutes of the last Easter vestry, which were confirmed, the Way warden's and the Pound and Green Committee's Accounts were passed, as read, and after a rather lively discussion, in which Mr. H. Perkins offered £10 for the privilege of letting the Green, it was proposed by Mr. Denton, seconded by Mr. Mortimer, and unanimously adopted. "That the letting of the Green for the ensuing year be in the hands of the overseers and parish constables. It was also decided that parishioners should have the use of the Green at a cheaper rate than charged to strangers. It was also decided upon the motion of Mr. W. Wilkins, that the sum of £1 17s. 6d. be allowed Mr. G. Clarke, upon 30yds. of land which had been added to the Newton-road. Mr. T. Willmott, on behalf of the Rushden Temperance Society, applied for permission to erect a drinking fountain, and also a trough for cattle, at the lower end of the Green, which was granted, subject to the control of the Sanitary Committee. It was also decided to utilise the balance of the parish account in placing seats, ornamenting, and planting trees on the Green. Mr. Haydn Packwood, in presenting a statement of the cost of the Rushden roads for the next year, said that, although occupying the post of waywarden, he had received no books, no money had been paid to him, he had paid no money away, nor had any control over any money. The bye roads had cost £412 1s , and the main roads £375 3s. 2d., or a total of £784 4s. 2d. during the year. Northamptonshire was the fifth most expensive county in England as regards road-making, and this in the face of their wretched condition. On the motion of Mr. Paul cave, seconded by Mr. B. Mortimer, Mr. Packwood was unanimously re-elected waywarden. Four nominations were made for overseers, the show of hands being as follows:- W. Wilkins 33, T. Tailby 26, G. H. Skinner 24, and Paul Cave 18. For the Rating Committee of seven members, eleven were nominated, the voting being as follows: G. Denton 39, W. Wilkins 38, J. T. Colson 34, F. Knight 32, S. Knight 34, T. Tailby 34, W. Sargent 24, these were elected, and in the event of the overseers being chosen from any of the above, Messrs. B. Mortimer 18, and E. Knight 17, will be the next two. Mr. P. Cave obtained 13 and Mr. J. Smith six votes. The Sanitary Committee were then elected as follows: Messrs. Foscett, E. Knight, P. Cave, G. Denton, C. Bayes, H. Packwood, J. T. Barker, J. Higgins, W. Claridge, B. Mortimer, W. Wilkins, J. Cave, and T. Willmott. The rev. chairman then called the attention of the vestry to the urgent need of additional burial ground, as if the present death-rate is maintained the Churchyard will be quite full in twelve months, and if there should be any increase in less time than that. The Rev. W. J. Tomkins also stated that the graveyard at the Old Baptist Meeting was nearly full. The following committee were then elected to enquire into the best means of obtaining a cemetery, and to report upon the same at the earliest possible date:—Rev. Canon Barker, Rev. W. J. Tomkins, Messrs. G. Denton, W. Wilkins, S. Knight, W. Clarke, W. Claridge, B. Mortimer, H. Packwood, P. Cave, G. H. Skinner, and R. O. Butcher.—Mr. G. Denton reported to the vestry the action taken by himself and Mr. S. Knight at the Wellingborough Board to obtain an additional guardian for Rushden. According to the rates paid Rushden was justly entitled to another representative upon that Board, and he moved "That the Chairman, on behalf of the parish of Rushden in vestry assembled, petition the Local Government Board to grant an additional guardian for the parish of Rushden; and in the event of that body being unable to accede to the petition, to receive a deputation upon the subject." This was seconded by Mr. C. Bayes, and carried unanimously.

The Wellingborough News, 21st October 1887, transcribed by Jim Hollis

Rushden - Important Vestry Meeting

An important parish meeting, convened by the overseers (Messrs. W. Wilkins and G. H. Skinner), was held at the Vestry Hall last (Thursday) evening. The subjects for consideration were – (1) How, and when the poll on the alteration of the date of the feast shall be taken; (2) a communication from the surveyor of the Highway Board relating to the condition of the wall round the Green; and (3) the proceedings of the Parochial Committee with regard to the proposed site for the cemetery. Mr. W. Wilkins was appointed chairman, and those present included Messrs. Geo. Denton, J. Margetts, F. Knight, C. Bradfield, T. Willmot, C. Barker, W. Claridge, J. Darnell, W. Callaway, B. Mortimer, H. Packwood, C. Perkins, A. Willmot, Hooper, C. Miller, J. T. Colson, A. Wright, W. Clarke, G. Fountain, Wm. Radburne, Woodward, J. Sargent, &c.

The Poll on The Alteration of The Feast

The Chairman, having read the notice convening the meeting, asked for suggestions as to the manner the proposed poll to be taken on the alteration of the feast should be carried out. – Mr. C. Barker proposed that the vote be taken on the same basis as the Board of Guardians elections, by leaving a paper at the house of every householder. – Mr. Bradfield strongly objected to this mode. In his opinion it was a left-handed, old-fashioned way. Although they might trust people’s honesty they could not tell who filled in the paper; it might be a child, or even a man’s grandmother for all they knew. – Mr. Denton proposed as an amendment, “That the vote be taken by ballot,” which was seconded by Mr. Bradfield. – In answer to a question, the Chairman said the cost of the ballot would probably be half-a-sovereign, whilst the voting papers might amount to 50s. (“No, no”, and “A sovereign.”) – Mr. Denton said it was not a matter of money either way, and as for the trouble he contended that those who took any interest in the question at all would not mind going a little out of the way. – The Chairman then put the question to the vote, when nine supported voting papers being issued, and six voted against. – Mr. Barker proposed that the vote be on the basis of Higham Feast or at the old time. – Mr. Callaway moved that “or bank holiday” be inserted, which was seconded by Mr. Skinner, the latter remarked that the bank holiday section ought to have a voice in the matter as well as the others. – Mr. Denton suggested that the vote be taken for an alteration or against, and Mr. Darnell proposed that it be bank holiday or the old time. – On being put to the meeting, 14 supported it being Higham Feast or the old time, whilst three voted against. – A lively discussion followed as to who should distribute and collect the voting papers. – Mr. Denton proposed that the duty be entrusted to the assistant-overseer. – On Mr. Hooper being proposed for the work, Mr. W. Clarke said he strongly objected to Hooper, and on his stating the nature of his objection, considerable uproar was caused, and there was a lively exchange of personalities. – Mr. Hooper, addressing the Chairman, said he should be prepared to do the work for half-a-sovereign. – After further discussion it was decided that the town crier distribute and collect the papers, the remuneration to be decided by the committee. – Mr. Colson humorously suggested that the poll should be taken previous to the 5th November, so that a bonfire might be made of the papers. – It was also decided to leave the date to the committee.

The Repair of The Wall Round The Green

The Chairman said the Surveyor of the Highway Board (Mr. Marriott) had written to the way warden, stating that he would not be responsible for the repair of the wall round the Green. It appeared to him (the Chairman) that Mr. Marriott was labouring under a misapprehension. It was his duty to look after the highways, and if part of a wall fell down, as in the present case, it was certainly his place to see that it was remedied. During the two years he had been way warden the Surveyor had not raised the question, and he supposed it was only because it was a more expensive job this time that he declined to bear the cost. – Mr. Packwood said the fact was that he, as way warden, seeing the wall was gradually falling down, had asked Mr. Marriott to repair it. Mr. Marriott, however, declined to do so, but said if he did he should claim the right to the receipts from the letting of the Green. He (Mr. Packwood) replied that he should bring it before the vestry meeting, and the question for them now to decide was who ought to keep the wall in repair. It would no doubt be brought before the next meeting of the Board, and he would be guided by the wish of the meeting. He should like to see the wall well done, for it was at present in a miserable state. – Mr. Skinner said the Board acknowledged their responsibility by repairing the wall up to this time. – Mr. Claridge said it seemed to him that as the Green was bringing in a little more than it use to, the Board wanted to take it over. – The Chairman thought they could safely leave it in Mr. Packwood’s hands to deal with at the Board, and for him to explain that the vestry declined responsibility.

The Proposed Site for The Cemetery

The chairman said the recommendation of the Committee was that six acres of Canon Barker’s glebe field should be purchased for the site of the cemetery, and that the small field of three acres should be purchased and used as a roadway. It was offered to them at £100 per acre, or, if they purchased the small field, they might have the nine acres for £800. The suggestions of the committee had been taken before the Sanitary Authority, and had also been sent to the Local Government Board. They might probably hold an inquiry, and then it would be possible for anyone who liked to raise any objections. The Committee wanted the opinion of the vestry, and he felt sure any objections they might make would be entertained by the Committee. – Mr. Barker, said it would be a waste of money to purchase the small field, and he did not see that Canon Barker ought to try to push it on the parish. – The Chairman considered Canon Barker had acted in a very liberal spirit, and Mr. Bradfield thought he had made a great concession to them, as he had been offered more money for the land than he was willing to let the parish have it for. – Mr. Knight said he was on the Committee, but he strongly opposed the purchase of the small field. It was an important question, when they were going to spend £200 more than was needful. The Chairman said the report of the Medical Officer stated that the six acres would last them fifty years, taking as the basis of the estimate that the population does not exceed 8,000. – Mr. Packwood said their six acres would practically cost them £130 per acre, as he understood they would not be allowed to bury on the three acres approaching the land. – Mr. Denton expressed himself in favour of purchasing the whole of the glebe field, and also the small field. He considered they would spend £2,000 before they had done. – Mr. Knight said that was the more reason they should not have the field. – After further discussion Mr. Denton moved – “That the vestry approved the site recommended by the Parochial Committee, including the narrow field as an approach. – Mr. Willmot seconded. – Mr. Knight proposed as an amendment – “That the Parochial Committee be requested to reconsider the question of site, the vestry being of opinion that the narrow field is unnecessary as an approach. – The amendment was seconded by Mr. C. Barker, and on being put to the vote was carried by fifteen to three.

The meeting then terminated, having lasted over two hours and a half.

Wellingborough News, 28th February 1890, transcribed by Kay Collins

VESTRY MEETING : WE BEAT THE RECORDA short time ago a vestry meeting was reported at Earls Barton, the total attendance at which numbered four souls. This record is now put out of it by the attendance at a vestry meeting, called by the overseers for the nomination of constables; for seven o'clock last evening. At the time mentioned but one person (the assistant-overseer) was present, and he held undisputed possession for at least half-an-hour, by which time another ratepayer dropped in. After waiting a little time in the hope that others would put in an appearance, "meeting” dispersed.

Northampton Mercury, April 5th 1890, transcribed by Susan Manton

Vestry Meeting

A largely attended vestry meeting was held in Rushden on Thursday week. Mr. G. Denton was elected chairman and there present : Mr. W. Wilkins and Mr. H. Skinner (overseers, Mr. John Sargent (assistant overseer), Mr. C. Claridge, Mr. Samuel Knight and Mr. Chas. Bayes (Guardians), Mr. John Cave, Mr. Paul Cave, Mr. Arthur Cave, Mr. Amos Cave, Mr. Fred Cave, Mr. William Claridge, Mr. John Claridge, Mr. William Clarke, Mr. T. Linnett, Mr. F. Knight, Mr. H. Brawn, Mr. J. Mason, Mr. T. Sanders, Mr. G.J. Battle,  Mr. J.T. Colson, Mr. W. Sargent, Mr. H. Sartoris, The Rev. W.J. Tomkins etc.

Mr. W. Wilkins and Mr. G.H. Skinner were again nominated as overseers. The Chairman and Mr. Wilkins explained, in answer to Mr. W. Clarke, that owing to Canon Barker’s illness very little had been done to improving the Newton Road. It was then resolved, on the motion of Mr. J. Claridge, that a committee (consisting of chairman, overseers, and way warden) enter into communication with Canon Barker for the purchase of a piece of land to further widen the road at that point. Mr. Wilkins proposed and Mr. C. Bayes seconded, that the rating committee be re-elected. Mr. Barker opposed this, but it was carried by a large majority. Mr. Paul Cave was appointed waywarden. As there were eight persons nominated for the seven seats on the Parochial Sanitary Committee, with the guardian, overseers and waywarden the meeting proceeded to vote. The following was the result G. Denton 55 votes; H. Sartoris 53; F. Newman 48; T. Sanders 50; F. Knight 45; W. Clarke 43; J. Claridge 42; W. Claridge 8.

The question of forming a local board was brought on by the Chairman. In introducing it he remarked that a few years ago they applied for urban powers for

Rushden and although they did not get all they wanted then, the authorities at Wellingborough had allowed the committee full powers to deal with Rushden affairs, but they had no power over the footpaths neither could they enforce a building line or levels. Since then the place has grown very rapidly and very dirty, and although money matters had held the question back for some time, the committee now thought that something must be done. Mr. Wilkins proposed and Mr. F. Knight seconded “That the Parochial Committee take what steps they consider necessary to obtain a Local Board for the Parish.”

Mr. Ward wished to know if the Board would have control of all the roads and paths in the parish.

The Chairman replied in the affirmative and stated that the turnpike roads would still be under the care of the County. Mr. Paul Cave wished to add to the resolution that the Irchester and Wellingborough roads be added to the main roads. Mr. Sartoris explained that after the new railway was constructed the traffic on these roads be added to the main roads. Mr. Sartoris explained that after the new railway was constructed the traffic on these roads would be greatly reduced and then they would probably not be used any more than when he was a boy. After discussion the resolution was carried with only Mr. W. Claridge voting against.

The Chairman informed the meeting that the engineer (Mr. Middleton) had advised a trial well being sunk, and several tenders had been received. Mr. Bailey, of Grantham, had now commenced the work and in the course of a few weeks they would know if they could obtain water in sufficient quantity to meet their requirements. A vote of thanks was passed to Mr. Sartoris for the liberal manner he had treated the parish over the water supply. Mr. Sartoris replied.

Rushden Echo, 19th April 1912

At the Vestry Meeting, Mr George Skinner was re-elected Warden in his 96th year.

Rushden Echo, Aug 15th 1919
This 1919 advert tells that Miss Payne held a day school in the Vestry Hall.

In 1912 she had opened a school in Prospect House on Higham Hill.

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