7.  AN ACCESS TO CAPITAL.

'Church building projects were of three kinds.  Sometimes rich men built churches for their own convenience and accommodation, or for the convenience and accommodation of their work people, and this was the simplest way of all.  Another scheme was to build churches in destitute but populous districts;  and, provided there [was] confidence in the promoters of such undertakings, rich men would be found not unwilling to give liberally towards this object.  The other, and by far the most difficult, project was in raising funds for new churches in neighbourhoods which could not plead extreme populousness or extreme poverty and in which there were no rich people who could be looked to to supply the bulk of the funds.'

                                   

                                            Manchester Courier & Lancashire General Advertiser, Saturday, 16th March 1861.

 

General Remarks.

 

As K. Theodore Hoppen observed, 'Unlike Victorian novelists and painters, architects needed very large sums of money in order to realize their ideas...  [M]oney lay... central  to their activities, even though only a small part of it remained in their hands.' [1].  This was critical:  the architect whose potential clients had insufficient access to capital would soon find that he, in turn, had insufficient business, and so besides drawing up plans to spend his clients' money for them, the successful, provincial architect often needed to display the skill to help them raise the money in the first place.

 

 

To refine the quotation at the head of this chapter therefore, there were three principal sources of funding for the construction of new churches, schools and parsonages: single donors, grantors, or through an appeal for small subscribers.  The first was indeed the easiest for the architect, for although he might find himself subject to the donor's caprices, he could generally be sure that once his designs had been approved, his building would be realised with reasonable despatch.  This was certainly less burdensome than being dependent upon grants: grantors, as described above, usually attached a series of conditions to their awards, even when those awards were modest, and particularly for buildings where more than one grantor was involved, which was the majority, the necessary work incurred by the architect in meeting them was frequently time-consuming and laborious.  Still worse however, because it risked the abandonment of the more profitable parts of the project (for the architect), such as the church tower, was the situation where the architect was reliant on small subscribers.  The quest for subscriptions generally began in a flourish of optimism but could quickly fall away after every potential donor had been approached.  The church, assuming that is what it was, might then be completed by drawing upon its endowment, thus saving the problem for the future, but whatever approach was adopted, there was little to be gained from applying to the parish rate for assistance, even though that remained a theoretical possibility.  Compulsory church rates were not abolished by Act of Parliament until 1868 but, in practice, had long since proved impossible to collect wherever Nonconformism was rife, as it was throughout the Yorkshire clothing districts, which confined this putative source of finance in Mallinson and Healey's sphere of operations to a few rural villages in Holderness, and even here, as will emerge, the sums that could be raised barely justified the effort of collecting them.

 

 

This section will examine these types of commission in turn, considering them principally from Mallinson and Healey's perspective.  Every method of funding brought challenges of one kind or another, and a practice's success depended on their skill in overcoming them.

 

*     *     *     *     *     *     *

 

Single Donors.

 

Approximately twenty individual donors can be identified among Mallinson and Healey's clients who paid for a building in its entirety or nearly so [2],  but no schools or parsonages were raised in this way and only five Anglican churches, namely (in date order): (i) St. Paul's, Manningham, where the patron was John Hollings;  (ii) St. John's, Langcliffe, the gift of John Green Paley; (iii) St. Mark's, Low Moor, paid for in its entirety by Charles Hardy;  (iv) Holy Innocents', Thornhill Lees, erected by Messrs. Hague, Cook and Wormald, chiefly for their workforce;  and (v) All Saints', Horton, where the patron was Sir Francis Sharp Powell.  Nothing is known of the partners' dealings with John Green Paley of Oatlands, Harrogate, or of his character - a vicious attack on him in The Leeds Times seems to have been occasioned by nothing more than his stated support for the levying of church rates [3] - but as seen in chapter four, the partners' relations with the others seems to have been reasonably untroubled, though doubtless there must have been irritations at times, or even occasional hurt feelings.  Generally, however, this was the easiest situation for the busy architect.  Be helpful, friendly and co-operative and, hopefully, all would go well.

 

 

The relationship for which the best evidence survives between Mallinson and Healey and these men is that between Thomas Healey on the one hand and Sir Francis Sharp Powell on the other.  On 17th March 1860, Healey replied to a letter from Powell (not extant) in which Powell appears to have queried Healey's estimate for his proposed new church of All Saints, Little Horton Green, implying it was too low and that he (Powell) had expected (hoped?) to spend more.  He raised a comparison with the recently completed St. Peter's Roman Catholic church (now the cathedral) in Lancaster [4], which he appeared to be taking as his model, which had cost 15,000 together with its 'associated buildings' and seated 600 people for the princely sum of 25 per sitting [5], but Healey, in his reply, assured Powell that his estimate was reasonable, saying that although he had not seen the Roman Catholic church, he suspected that 'it must contain some elaborate work therein' and then going on to add that, 'We, of course, calculated on making Horton church thoroughly truthful and substantial as the first essential and in our estimate were guided by the church at Heptonstall which holds about 1,100 people, has a tower 24 feet square externally, and cost about 5,500' [6]. This was Healey's most expensive building to date, but at one-fifth the cost per sitting of Paley and Austin's St. Peter's, Lancaster, nothing could have illustrated more starkly the gulf between Healey's conception and the scale of Powell's ambition.

 

 

It seems likely that Powell fretted about this as during the next few months he sent various suggestions to Healey that might have been intended to encourage him to raise his sights, on one occasion sending Healey books and on another, a copy of the Illustrated London News, containing drawings he hoped might indicate the nature of the building he had in mind.  The Illustrated London News of 23rd June 1860 carried an artist's impression of the interior of the proposed new church at Heywood (Rochdale), whose foundation stone had just been laid.  The building was designed by Joseph Clarke and was expected to cost 10,000 but Healey was not deterred from expressing what, by now, may have been his gathering irritation: 'The nave [at Heywood] is about the same size as in Mr. Akroyd's church [at Haley Hill] with considerably wider aisles, and like it, appears to be rather short for its length[?]'  Presumably 'length' should have read 'width' [7].

 

 

Soon after this, Healey had his first stroke, and his subsequent letters are full of thanks for Powell's solicitousness and apologies for the difficulties he was having progressing with the work, but Powell continued in his efforts to prise Healey away from his habitual obsession with economy as indicated on 3rd August when Healey wrote to assure Powell that he would indeed take the earliest possible opportunity to visit Scott's new church at Doncaster [8], which had cost the good burghers of that town the little matter of 40,000 [9].  By this time, Powell's continual prompting was having its accumulative effect for by the time of the ceremony for the laying of All Saints' foundation stone, Healey's amended designs had been estimated to cost 10,000 [10], and when the church was finally consecrated, three years later, after Healey had died, this had risen to 'not less than 15.000' [11] - and this for a building that could accommodate one thousand people 'on the ground floor' (i.e. excluding the gallery space). Had Healey lived, it would have been interesting to have seen whether a new and richer manner of building had opened in his imagination.

 

 

*     *     *     *     *     *     *

 

Grantors.

 

Perverse as it may appear, grantors could actually add to the cost of a building, rather than help meet it, by the stipulations they imposed.  This was particularly the case with the Church Building Commissioners, not only because their expectation that a new church should be manifestly Anglican carried an assumption that a tower and sometimes a spire would be included in the plans, but also because the demand for the church to contain a certain proportion of free seats, limited the opportunity to raise money from pew rents.  Such additional expense or reduction in income would have meant relatively little to the sixteen West Riding churches awarded grants during the 1820s from the one million pounds originally allocated by Parliament, since the average award then was 9,825 (with sums ranging upwards from 4,811 at Hanging Heaton to 15,181 for St. George's, Sheffield) [12].  Yet during the decade 1845-1854, when the Commission was trying to eke out the remains of the second parliamentary grant of half a million pounds, this figure had fallen to 311 (with sums ranging downwards from 1,114 at Eccleshill to just 100 each at Shepley and St. Matthew's, Sheffield) [13].  Eleven of Mallinson and Healey's churches received assistance from the Commission in the period 1843-54, at an average of 341.

 

 

Mallinson and Healey designed a tower for eight of them (at Queen's Head, Wyke, Clayton, Mytholmroyd, Richmond Hill, South Ossett, Bradford Listerhills and Mount Pellon) and added a spire at three (Wyke, Richmond Hill and Listerhills) - an achievement that can only have sharpened their concern for cost-effectiveness.  Although there was obviously no standard cost for a tower or spire and the majority of clients may have wanted one anyway, to provide a rough figure as a guide, the intended tower and spire at St. Paul's, Thornaby-on -Tees (designed 1858), was omitted for want of 600 - almost twice the average grant from the Commission during its final years [14].  As for any specific difficulties or inconveniences created by the Commissioners affecting the partners, there is no evidence in the archives, but M.H. Port, discussing the situation overall, describes many potential problems for architects in general:  a church plan could be accepted by a building committee but rejected by the Commission, who would then not accept any charge on that account; when a plan was accepted, the architect was required to bind himself that the 'work shall be properly executed' on pain of the forfeiture of 15% of the contract price (even though his commission was only 5%), notwithstanding that the contractors may not have been chosen by him and that he may have had no prior knowledge of their work [15];  the Commission expected compliance with their 'Instructions to Architects' (revised in 1843 in collaboration with the ICBS) which had both design and financial implications, such as the requirement that roofs should be more steeply pitched than customarily established;  etc. [16].

 

 

Grants from the Incorporated Church Building Society were available throughout Mallinson and Healey's partnership and the Society rarely turned down a request altogether, the single recorded exception for Mallinson and Healey occurring in the case St. Thomas the Apostle, Heptonstall, where it was probably considered that such a relatively expensive building was sufficiently well funded already [17].  However, ICBS grants were generally small, as illustrated in table 7a, which shows that although thirty-two of the partners' churches received such a grant, of the twenty-nine for which the figure is known, the average was only 207.  This was helpful but rarely decisive.  Yet from the difficulties raised by the Society, one might have imagined more was at stake.  First the Society's complicated application form obviously had to be completed and sent off, which most incumbents or building committee chairmen thought prudent to accompany with a letter seeking to outdo potential rivals in offering proofs of destitution. Then, when the reply was received, often from Thomas Bowdler, the Society's honorary secretary until 1856, the real difficulties began, for few submissions were as favourably received as that for the partners' proposed church at Boroughbridge, where an immediate offer of 180 was received [18]. More typical was the reception of the application from Charlestown, eventual grant 190), which elicited a curt note saying, 'The tower walls are not thick enough, the tower and spire being above 100 ft. high [and the] west wall of same is also too thin for its height', to which James Mallinson's reply that 'the walls are of the same height and thickness as in the new church at Salterhebble in this neighbourhood, which have received the Incorporated Society's seal' [19], changed the Society's stance not one jot.  It was a different but equally aggravating story at Thornaby-on-Tees (eventual grant, 225), where the ICBS replied to the application to say that 'the plaster must not be [illeg.] in imitation of stone - if the windows cannot be in stone, plain plaster must be used' [20].  The survival of this correspondence is unusual since, for obvious reasons, the Society's records rarely contain the reports sent out to parishes, but one can often surmise the general gist of their contents from the return mail they provoked.  Thus John Hollings, perhaps acting as chairman of the building committee at Girlington (eventual grant, 280), wrote to the Society to say that as he was 'anxious, if possible, to avoid additional cost' in the building of St. Philip's, he wondered whether 'some misapprehension may exist as to the quality of our local building stone', to the use of which the ICBS had presumably objected [21].  Unfortunately, this time there is no record of the reply.  However, lest Thomas Healey (who was nearly always responsible for the plans) should appear to have run into more than the usual amount of difficulty in dealing with the Society, he had a considerably easier time than Walker Rawstorne, and the architect originally engaged for the partial rebuilding of St. John the Evangelist's, Baildon, in 1846, John Tertius Fairbank, was completely unable to get his plans past the ICBS at all, with J.H. Good adding for good measure, 'N.B. All Plans submitted for examination should be drawn on stout paper, tracing paper being exceedingly objectionable' [22].   Nevertheless, it was an ill wind that blew nobody any good and there was also the case of St. Barnabas's church, Heaton, eventually designed in 1863 by 'Mallinson and Healey' after Thomas Healey had died but during the months the firm continued in business under its existing name, with Thomas Henry and Francis Healey working alongside James Mallinson in an arrangement that probably saw the Healey brothers assuming responsibility for the ecclesiastical work.  Here, the incumbent, the Rev. Henry Mitton, had probably first considered himself fortunate in having as one of his 'most influential parishioners', a self-styled architect who had offered to draw up the plans without charge.  However, when these came back from the ICBS together with an excoriating report, the minister was left in contortions of embarrassment, unable to proceed yet unwilling to give his important parishioner sight of the Society's damning criticisms, and when, at last, he did find the courage to do so, the result was an increasingly excruciating exchange of drastic amendments to the designs by the 'architect' with further rejections from Good's successor, which left the minister pleading with him to moderate his language and finally drove Mitton to submit to the inevitable and pass the job over to Mallinson and Healey [23].

 

 

Table 7a:  Grant awards for Mallinson and Healeys Anglican churches.

 

Church

Church

Building

Commission

Incorporated Church Building Society (ICBS)

Ripon Diocesan Church Building Society

Bradford

Church Building Society

Holy Trinity, Queens Head

500

200

-

-

St. Mary's, Wyke

500

400

award not recorded

-

St. John's, Baildon

-

150

-

-

St. Paul's, Manningham

-

-

-

-

St. John the Baptist's, Clayton

1,031

260

500

-

St. Michael's, Mytholmroyd

300

230

400

-

St. Matthew's, Bankfoot

200

award not recorded

400

-

St. Michael & All Angels'. Shelf

250

award not recorded

400

-

All Saints', Richmond Hill

300

400

500

-

Christ Church, South Ossett

200

200

award not recorded

-

Christ Church, Barkisland

150

180

375

-

St. James's, Boroughbridge

-

180

-

-

St. John's, Langcliffe

-

-

230

-

St. Andrew's, Listerhills

200

-

-

-

St. Mary & All Saints', Cundall

-

-

not in the diocese

-

St. Thomas's, Heptonstall

-

225

-

-

Christ Church, Mount Pellon

125

160

225

-

St. Peter's, Thorner

-

69 (sic)

-

-

St. Alban's, Withernwick

-

60

not in the diocese

-

All Saints', Mappleton

-

-

not in the diocese

-

St. Mary Magdalene's, E. Keswick

-

75

-

-

St. Mark's, Low Moor

-

-

-

-

St. Thomas's, Charlestown

-

190

-

-

St. John's, Clifton

-

90

-

-

All Saints', Salterhebble

-

180

-

-

St. Paul's, Thornaby-on-Tees

-

225

not in the diocese

-

Holy Innocents', Thornhill Lees

-

-

-

-

St. Stephen's, Bowling

-

415

-

250

St. Philip's, Girlington

-

280

500

-

St. Mary's, Lower Dunsforth

-

80

120

-

St. John's, Welburn

-

250

not in the diocese

-

St. Luke's, Broomfields

-

385

500

1,225

St. John's, Tong Street

-

200

-

-

St. Mary's, Quarry Hill

-

100

-

-

St. Mary's, Laisterdyke

-

330

500

900

St. Mark's, Dewsbury

-

200

500

-

St. Mary's, Westow

-

70

not in the diocese

-

St. Michael's, Catwick

-

award not recorded

not in the diocese

-

All Saints', Horton

-

-

-

-

Holy Trinity, Hepworth

-

225

380

-

St. Peter's, Arthington

-

-

-

-

TOTALS

3,756

6,009

5,530

2,375

AVERAGE

341.9s.1d

207.4s.2d

395.0s.0d

791.13s.4d

 

 

The Ripon Diocesan Church Building Society, in comparison, seems to have been a less cantankerous organisation to deal with and the fact that only sixteen of Mallinson and Healey's churches erected within the diocese obtained a grant from them, was probably merely a testimony of the Society's limited funds, although when a building committee did receive an award, it was usually relatively generous, the fourteen churches for which the amount is known, being given on average 395, with six awarded 500 - a figure never reached by any of Mallinson and Healey's churches from the ICBS.  Nor did the Society entirely confine itself to churches, for in 1854 it awarded a grant towards the cost of the partners' parsonage at Lightcliffe [24], and two years later, it gave another towards the building of Bradshaw parsonage [25].  There is nothing to indicate that any of these applications seriously added to the partners' work, but now the Society's Rule 14 presented a problem for this stated that any building project in receipt of a grant from the Society had to be overseen by a full-time clerk-of-the-works, and managing without one was one of the few opportunities architects had of making a small saving in order to gain a slight financial edge over their competitors.  In fact, the general lack of evidence for clerks-of-the-works in Mallinson and Healey's day-books, referred to in the previous chapter, suggests the partners often ignored this stipulation unless the shenanigans at Barkisland were common practice elsewhere, for here the plasterer was deemed to be the clerk-of-the-works also and while the principal payment made to him was 75.1s.5d for plastering, he was also given occasional small sums for odd jobs such as helping to hang the bells (5/-) and cleaning stonework (1), and irregular, ad hoc payments of 10 for carrying out the duties of clerk-of-the works, suggesting this was a ploy to meet the RDCBS's regulation while actually employing the 'clerk' chiefly to do something else!

 

 

The Bradford Church Building Society was established in 1859 under the chairmanship of Dr. John Burnet, vicar of Bradford, with the stated intent of building ten new churches in and around the town.  This was doubtless the perfect body so far as Mallinson and Healey were concerned and they may have wished that twenty churches had been intended for even as things stood, together (later on) with T.H. and F. Healey, they were eventually to be given responsibility for designing seven since, in addition to the three listed as having received grants from the BCBS in table 7a, All Saints', Horton, erected at the sole charge of Sir Francis Sharp Powell, was considered to be a fourth, and St. Philip's, Girlington, St. Barnabas's, Heaton, and St. Bartholomew's, Ripleyville, were three more, the first of which it eventually proved possible to pay for without any direct contribution from the BCBS at all and the last of which was designed by T.H. & F. Healey in 1872.  The Society's rules were entirely free of any stipulation about the conditions to be met by the architects and dealt only with the ways the Committee's business was to be conducted (rules I to IX and XIII to XIV) and how the patronage of the new churches was to be allocated after their completion (rules X to XII).

 

 

Parsonages, as seen above, were eligible for a grant from the Ecclesiastical Commission (although as already described in chapter 2, the work involved was excessive) or a loan from the Queen Anne's Bounty Office, and from 1853 there was also the Gally Knight Fund, established from a legacy of 37,000 arising from the sale of Mr. Henry Gally Knight's Firbeck Estate near Rotherham.  This was now administered by the Ecclesiastical Commissioners but held separately from their other monies, and available for assisting the building of parsonages 'in any part of England, except the Diocese of Durham' (which had its own source of income) [26], with an upper limit of 400 for any particular project. The Queen Anne's Bounty is mentioned forty-three times in Mallinson and Healey's day-books, and the parsonages receiving financial assistance included those at Burley-in-Wharfedale [27], Bankfoot [28], South Ossett [29], Bradshaw [30], Lightcliffe [31], Shelf [32], Buttershaw [33], Boroughbridge [34], Thornhill Lees [35], Clayton [36], and Barkisland [37] (= 11 altogether), suggesting almost every new parsonage had a good chance of obtaining help, and so it is a pity the day-books give no indication of the sums awarded.  Mallinson made frequent reference to preparing 'the necessary plans for [the] application' or the 'declaration of completion' for these parsonages and Healey also sent plans to the Bounty Office and applied for payment once the buildings were finished, but there is no indication of what was involved. The only parsonage recorded in the day-books as having received assistance from the Gally Knight Fund was that at Bradshaw [38], which underwent by far the longest, most drawn-out planning and construction process of any designed by the partners for which this period is known.

 

 

*     *     *     *     *     *     *

 

Small Subscribers.

 

Funding church building by subscription was always a rather hazardous affair and usually left building committees with a deficit at the end.  Churches by Mallinson and Healey paid for chiefly in this way included those at Barkisland, Heptonstall, Mount Pellon, East Keswick, Dewsbury and Hepworth, where the subscription lists survive and appear to be largely complete.  Thus: (i) at Barkisland one hundred and sixty-seven individuals gave a total of 1,742.5s.6d, with donations ranging from 2 to 200;  (ii) at Heptonstall, sixty-three people gave 4,630 (1 to 1,000);  (iii) at Mount Pellon, eighty-six people gave 1,771.5s.3d (1/- to 400); (iv) at East Keswick, forty-eight people gave 1,110.2s.0d (10/- to 500);  (v) at Dewsbury, forty-nine people gave 2,041 (5 to 500); and (vi), at Hepworth, one hundred and eighty-eight people gave 1,468.14s.6d (10d to 100).  The deficit was 164.16s.11d at Barkisland, 600 at Heptonstall (550 after the collection at the consecration service), 330.6s.0d at Mount Pellon, and 1,062 at Dewsbury [40].  There was a surplus of 30 at East Keswick and no figure is given in the records for Hepworth.

 

 

These figures are interesting for two reasons.  First, they give some indication of how many contributions were generally needed, and therefore how difficult it could be, to raise a sum of between one and two thousand pounds by subscription.  Secondly, except probably at Dewsbury, it seems it was considered right to record everybody's donation, and at four of the churches, probably in the order in which they were received rather than by value [41].  This appears to suggest a belief, therefore, of how in an act of religious piety such as this, the rigid hierarchy of Victorian society should be left at the church door.

 

 

Here the architect's primary concern may have been whether the money would enable the work to be completed and possibly also whether they would be paid promptly and in full.  Probably all he could do to facilitate fund-raising, assuming the building was a church, would have lain in ensuring the works were in the proper state of preparedness for the laying of the foundation stone and, subsequently, that the church was complete and the site sufficiently tidy in time for its consecration, both of which were expected to bring in increased donations. The construction of Holy Trinity, Hepworth, proceeded quickly (441 days from the laying of the foundation stone to consecration) but progress was slower at Mount Pellon (522 days) and slower still at Barkisland (657 days), particularly in view of its modest tower-less form.  St. Thomas's, Heptonstall, is a large proud building but, nevertheless, the four and a half years taken to build it, still appears excessive (1,624 days from the laying of the foundation stone until its consecration).  The comparable period for the large but less extravagant building of St. Mark's, Dewsbury, was 837 days: the foundation stone was laid on 11th November 1862 [42], four days after Thomas Healey's death, and consecration finally took place on 24th February 1865 after having been initially planned for 21st September 1864 and then postponed [43].  The newspaper report on the consecration ceremony referred to the church's long period of construction and implied that it was due to the difficulty in raising money, yet without some direct evidence such as this, it is necessary to exercise caution for, as shown in the case of Holy Trinity, Queen's Head (chapter three), the date of a church's consecration is not an infallible indication of when the building was completed, for in that case a long delay ensued owing to the fact that a small part of the new parish was due to be taken from the parish of Bradford, making it mandatory for the Vicar of Bradford, the Rev. Dr. William Scoresby, to be served with a formal notice of the revised bounds before they could come into effect, even though he had previously consented verbally, and that he was currently away, travelling in America [44].

 

 

As for the ease with which the architects might have obtained their commission, Barkisland is possibly a straw in the wind.  This was a small job for which the final cost excluding the architects' commission and sundry expenses came to 1,450.  Mallinson submitted the partners' bill on August 10th 1854.  Their commission at the usual rate of 5% was 72.10s.0d, on top of which Mallinson added 2.7s.0d for making an initial survey and plan of the proposed site (5/- of which was paid to an assistant), 8.8s.0d for all the work involved in obtaining grants from the Incorporated and Ripon Diocesan Church Building Societies, 10/6 for altering the site plan when the land available was suddenly reduced to of an acre from whatever it had been previously, 4.5s.0d to cover the cost of thirty-seven journeys to Barkisland to inspect the works (at an average of 2/3d a journey), 3.9s.10d for postage, printing and advertising, 2.2s.0d for preparing plans for a possible church tower at the building committee's request (not taken up) and making an estimate of its cost, and 3.3s.0d for making three additional copies of the plan, amounting in all to 96.15s.4d.  It does not appear excessive even though the charge for preparing grant applications is not encountered on the partners' invoices elsewhere. Yet William Baxter, Lord of the Manor and chairman of the building committee, adopted a positively sarcastic tone in his letter to the treasurer, the Rev. James Sanders.  The work, it is fair to say, had suffered some delay owing to the fact that the partners were simultaneously engaged on so much else, but they could hardly have sustained their business on the work at Barkisland alone.

 

'My dear Sir,

 

'I return to you Mr. Mallinson's Bill, which is more than enough for their department in the erection of our church.  37 journeys to Barkisland.  How attentive he must have been.  I suppose the bill must be paid altho. so unreasonable considering the delay and trouble he has caused.' [45].

 

 

This is the only evidence of dissatisfaction with Mallinson and Healey from a client in the surviving records, which itself seems to suggest the unreasonableness lay on William Baxter's side rather than Mallinson's, but arguably in the desperate struggle to build by subscription in a poor district - and the subscribers list for Barkisland records 124 small subscribers who were solicited for sums between 2 and 5, many of whom lived at a distance - niggardliness such as this is easier to understand.

 

 

*     *     *     *     *     *     *

 

The Parish Rate.

 

The parish rate played only a very small part in the funding of new churches in mid-nineteenth century Yorkshire, and rarely impinged on these projects at all.   A report on the building of St. Thomas the Apostle, Heptonstall, written on the occasion of its golden jubilee, explained why it amounted to so little.  The church was erected a matter of yards from the old church of St. Thomas Becket, where the tower had fallen in a gale in 1847 and the damaged and dilapidated building had originally been proposed for repair.

 

'To repair the breach, or rather rebuild the tower, the church wardens with the concurrence of some of the principal inhabitants, determined to call a vestry meeting for the purpose of obtaining funds by means of a church rate throughout the chapelry.  No church rate had been laid since the year 1843.  The plan of a new tower, estimated to cost about 400, was procured from Mr. Child, architect, Halifax, and was laid before the vestry meeting which was held in the body of the church on Thursday, the 18th of November, 1847.  Parishioners from different parts of the chapelry, mill owners and factory hands, came in great numbers to oppose the rate. There was a very disorderly and uproarious meeting, nevertheless the opposition party granted a rate of one farthing in the pound, which they well knew would be scarcely worth while to collect, and quite unequal to the amount required.  After the meeting, the churchwardens and friends of the church consulted together, and on finding that a farthing in the pound would only realise 60, gave up all idea of raising any portion of the funds by means of the rate...' [46].

 

 

This salutary experience was clearly anticipated by most church wardens and church building committees throughout the Yorkshire clothing districts, who never even attempted such a thing, for the only recorded churches by Mallinson and Healey for which a rate was raised successfully are both to be found among the rural villages of the East Riding, namely at Withernwick, where the church was reconstructed from the old materials in 1854/5 [47], and at Catwick, where the church was partially reconstructed in 1863/4 [48].  The sums eventually realised in this way are shown in tables 7b & 7c, but while it is immediately apparent that they were very modest, the effect upon individual ratepayers was actually quite severe.  Thus to single out some examples, at Withernwick, John Bateson, who paid his customary sum of 7/5d in 1854/5, was confronted with a demand for 2.19s.6d in 1854/5.  He then got a little relief in 1855/6, when he only had to pay 3/8d, following which the rate returned to its usual figure in 1856/7.  Similarly, a decade later at Catwick, Thomas Bateson (sic) paid 6/0d in 1862/3, 1.9s.6d in 1863/4, and 11/0d in 1864/5 and 1865/6, while his poorer neighbour, Thomas Smith, paid 2d in 1862/3, 1/- in 1863/4, and 6d in 1864/5 and 1865/6.   And even with sharp rate rises such as these, the exercise did not necessarily raise more money. Thus William Robert Park, also of Catwick, paid 1.2s.6d in 1862/3, defaulted in 1863/4, when he gave nothing, but then returned to paying his rate dutifully in 1864/5 and 1865/6, in each of which years he paid 1.15s.6d.

 

 

Table 7b:  Withernwick Parish Rates.

 

Year

Rate

Number of Ratepayers

Amount Raised

1853/4

1d in the pound

64

       11.   1s. 11d

1854/5

8d in the pound

60

       88.   9s.   8d

1855/6

d in the pound

60

         5. 10s. 10d

1856/7

1d in the pound

59

       10. 18s.   9d

TOTAL AMOUNT RAISED

-

-

     116.   1s.   3d

 

 

Table 7c:  Catwick Parish Rates.

 

Year

Rate

Number of Ratepayers

Amount Raised

1862/3

1d in the pound

25

         7.  19s.  9d

1863/4

4d in the pound

27

       33.  13s.  7d

1864/5

1d in the pound

28

       13.    7s.  5d

1865/6

1d in the pound

28

       13.    7s.  5d

TOTAL AMOUNT RAISED

-

-

       68.    8s.  3d

 

 

 

 

 *     *     *     *     *     *     *

 

Conclusion.

 

In the design and erection of any new building, it was easiest for the architect if a single individual was paying for it.  Other options were almost inevitably more troublesome, uncertain, or both.  Grantors invariably created work and, not infrequently, additional expense, which the architect had to manage and/or mitigate.  Building by subscription, however, could be extremely unpredictable, was largely beyond the architect's control,  and a good start did not always imply matters would go well thereafter.  As for any attempt to raise money through the church rate, this was unlikely ever to provide very much help and wherever Dissent flourished, it was totally impracticable.  Yet in spite of these difficulties, new churches continued to be proposed and Mallinson and Healey continued to erect them, on average at a rate of three or four per annum.  It was witness to the partners' skills of personal diplomacy and their ability to meet the complex demands of  bureaucratic and obstructive official bodies, coupled with a willingness to undertake much routine and monotonous office work, that the money was forthcoming, year after year, to enable building to continue.

 

 

NOTES:

  1. Hoppen, The Mid-Victorian Generation, pp. 416 & 417.

  2. Among them, Edward Akroyd, the Earl of Carlisle,  John and William Foster, Charles Hardy, the Earl and Countess of Harewood,  John Hollings, Sir Francis Sharp Powell, Dr. Macturk, John Green Paley, Peter Thompson, and Messrs Hague, Cook and Wormald.

  3. The Leeds Times, 1st April 1837, p. 3.

  4. By Paley and Austin, 1857-59.

  5. Brandwood, The Architecture of Sharpe, Paley and Austin, p. 218.

  6. Thomas Healey to Sir Francis Sharp Powell, Bradford, 17th March 1860.   Bradford, WYA B-P papers, 16D86/2957.

  7. Healey wrote to thank Powell for the books on 12th June 1860 and for the newspaper on 27th June.  How thankful he really was is a matter for speculation.

  8. Minster church of St. George, completed 1858:  'the proudest and most cathedral-like of this fabulously busy and successful architect's parish churches' (Pevsner & Radcliffe, The Buildings of England - Yorkshire:  the West Riding, p. 181).

  9. Yorkshire Gazette, 16th October 1858, p. 3.

  10. Yorkshire Gazette, 30th November 1861, p. 9.

  11. The Wigan Observer and District Advertiser, 2nd April 1864, p. 4.

  12. Port, Six Hundred New Churches, p. 329.

  13. Port, Six Hundred New Churches, pp. 343-345.

  14. Yorkshire Gazette, 25th September 1858, p. 9. (The tower that was eventually added to this church in 1897, albeit without a spire, was constructed to an entirely different design by T.H. & F. Healey.)

  15. Port, Six Hundred New Churches, pp. 104-105.

  16. Port, Six Hundred New Churches, p. 249.

  17. Rev. Thomas Sutcliffe, incumbent at Heptonstall, to Rev. Thomas  Bowdler, Honorary Secretary to the  ICBS. Heptonstall, 17th November 1853.   LPA, ICBS 3529.R

  18. ev. Thomas Bowdler to Rev. George Holdsworth.  Whitehall, 16th April 1851.   LPA, ICBS 4355.

  19. LPA, ICBS 5192.  Mallinson's letter is dated Halifax, 11th December, 1857.

  20. LPA, ICBS 5135. 

  21. John Hollings to the Secretary of the Incorporated Church Building Society,  3rd May, 1859.  LPA, ICBS 5395.

  22. J.H. Good to the building committee at Baildon, London, 10th May 1846.  LPA, ICBS 3711.

  23. LPA,  ICBS 6013.

  24. D/B, 27th October 1854.

  25. D/B, 29th March & 5th April 1856.

  26. Royal Cornwall Gazette, 15th April 1853, p. 3.

  27. D/B, 3rd April and 11th & 20th July 1854.

  28. D/B, 19th, 20th & 30th May and 6th & 7th October 1854.

  29. D/B, 3rd & 15th June 1854.

  30. D/B, 15th August and 2nd & 6th December 1854.

  31. D/B, 28th October 1854.

  32. D/B, 7th, 10th, 23rd & 29th August 1855.

  33. D/B, 28th, 30th and 31st August 1855.

  34. D/B, 25th February 1856.

  35. D/B, 25th November 1856.

  36. D/B, 30th June,1st July and 1st October 1857.

  37. D/B, 5th August 1857.

  38. D/B, 15th & 29th August 1854 and 29th March 1856 & 10th November 1856.

  39. Leeds Intelligencer, 25th February 1865, p. 5.

  40. As shown, for example, at Hepworth, where the Earl of Dartmouth's 150 is preceded in the listby 20 from Mrs. Bradshaw and followed  by 10 from Robert Ramsden. 

  41. Batley Reporter and Guardian, January 29th 1881, p. 5.

  42. Leeds Intelligencer, 10th September 1864, p. 8.

  43. H. Robson to the Rev. T. Bowdler, Honorary Secretary to the ICBS, Halifax, 17th September 1844.  LPA, ICBS 2990.

  44. Assorted correspondence, plans and estimates for Barkisland church.  Wakefield, WYA, WDP21/252.

  45. Todmorden and District News, 28th October 1904, p. 6.

  46. Beverley, East Riding Record Office, PE81/45.

  47. Beverley, ERRO, PE9/15/2.

  CHAPTER 8.  ►