Vestry, 1881

Bicester Herald, 8 July

  A WATER SUPPLY MOVEMENT AT WINSLOW is before the public.  On Thursday, June 30, a vestry meeting was held to consider the desirability of securing the two large tanks in the old gas works as reservoirs for supplying water in case of fire.  The chair was taken by Mr. James King, and there were also present Messrs. T. P. Willis, G. Lee, Sare, East, Saving, Parrett, Jas. Sear, and Hathaway.  Mr. Sare proposed, and Mr. Jas. East seconded, “That the present vestry considers it desirable to take steps to secure for the supply of water for the fire engine, the old gas tanks.”  Mr. Jas. Sear proposed as an amendment that the words “the old gas tanks” be omitted.  This was not seconded, and the motion was carried by 5 to 2.  Mr. East then proposed “That this meeting be adjourned to this day four weeks, at the Boys’ Schoolroom, at seven o’clock in the evening, to receive a report from Messrs. King, Sare, and Lee, as to the cost of covering the tanks and connecting the same, and bringing the water supply into the street or the school yard.  This was seconded by Mr. Hathaway and carried unanimously.

Bicester Herald, 2 Sep

  THE WATER RESERVE QUESTION AT WINSLOW is left over.  The project for using the old gas holders as tanks for supplying the fire engine with water, seems to have fallen through.  The vestry meeting on the subject was adjourned to that day four weeks, at the Boys’ Schoolroom, on which occasion no one put in an appearance, and consequently, no further proceedings were taken in the matter.

Bucks Herald, 17 Dec 1881

  On Friday evening, Dec. 9th, a public meeting was held in the Infant Schoolroom to consider a proposal made at the recent vestry to close the Churchyard.
  On the motion of Dr. Newham, seconded by Mr. W. H. French, Mr. H. Monk, as the largest ratepayer, was called to the chair, and having read the notice convening the meeting, said he should be happy to hear any proposition which any gentleman had to make.
  Dr. Newham then proposed that “For the future no interments take place in the Churchyard,” and in the course of his remarks said he remembered when twenty-four years ago the Churchyard was enclosed at a cost of £325, and the fence was certainly ornamental and efficient at the time, but had become so knocked about as to be beyond repair.  Besides, setting aside all other reasons, the Churchyard was so full that the closing of it was only a matter of time.  He should like to see it put in repair, but did not believe they could raise the money on a voluntary system, while by substituting a cemetery with a burial board they could make a rate and enforce payment.
  Mr. E. Parrett seconded the resolution, and said he did not think the dead should be buried so close to the living, and the living compelled to drink the water which percolated through the graves of the dead.
  Mr. William Neal moved an amendment, “That the Churchyard be not closed,” and said the sexton had told him there was space for 150 more graves, while he did not think from a sanitary point of view any necessity had been shown for it being closed.  To make a cemetery would cost at least £2,000, which the town of Winslow was not now in a position to afford.
  Mr. J. St.Thomas Wynter said he had lived opposite the church for fifty-one years, and had not been away from his house for more than a week at a time, and until then he had never heard a complaint as to the water from the Churchyard.  He was a great water drinker, and had never felt the slightest ill effects from it.
  Mr. G. O. Tite supported the amendment, and pointed out that if they had a cemetery they must repair the Churchyard all the same, so that they would have to support both.
  Mr. R. W. Jones said the late sexton had told him that it was most difficult to find a spot in which to dig a grave.
  Mr. T. Saving proposed “That a Committee of Churchmen and Dissenters be appointed to devise the best means of putting the Churchyard into a decent state,” which, he said, it was not at the present time.
  Mr. Wynter could not see that either the impurity of the water or the fullness of the Churchyard had been proved.  There was plenty of room on the north side of the Church for more graves; he thought there were excellent reasons for repairing the Churchyard fence.
  Mr. W. H. French said he was old enough to remember this fence being erected.  It was of too light a pattern, and had since been subject to an amount of neglect and injury that a stronger fence could not stand.  It was a question in his mind whether the fence was to keep the sheep in or the ratepayers out.  There were graves of which all traces had been lost, and where the stone-work and railing had been rubbed down by sheep.  He warned that if they wished to precipitate a burial board and cemetery all they had to do was to leave the Churchyard alone.
  Mr. Hathaway said that sooner or later they must have a cemetery.  It might be put off for a few years, but the Churchyard fence they could not postpone for a year or two, and he would suggest that the portion of the fence adjoining the street be put in proper order and the remainder disposed of.
  Mr. Neal’s amendment was then put to the meeting, and the number of hands in favour of it being largely predominant, the Chairman declared it carried.
  MR. W. H. French then proposed the following resolution:- “That a committee be formed, to consist of the churchwardens and ten other ratepayers, to be chosen by this meeting, for the purpose of reforming the condition of our parish graveyard.  The said committee, with the consent and co-operation of the Vicar, to create a fund by the sale of the iron fence, and by raising a voluntary rate, the fund to be expended in removing the trees from the eastern end of the graveyard, re-placing them by evergreen shrubs of smaller growth, and placing a neat finish on the dwarf brick wall, in the erection of cattle-proof gates, the keeping up of existing graves, and in making all future graves of a suitable depth.”
  This was seconded by Mr. Neal, and Mr. Saving having withdrawn his resolution, it was put to the meeting and declared to be carried.
  A committee was then appointed, consisting of Messrs. Monk, C. Colgrove, George Wigley, W. H. French, T. Saving, H. Wigley, James King, W. Neal, G. O. Tite, and the Rev. F. J. Feltham, and it was agreed that the first meeting should be held on the following Monday in the Infants’ Schoolroom.
  Mr. W. H. French proposed that the ratepayers present engage loyally to assist and support the committee in the furtherance of these aims.
  This was seconded by Mr. E. Parrett, and put to the meeting, when a majority of hands were held up in favour of it.
  The meeting closed with a vote of thanks to the Chairman.

See also:

Copyright 2 February, 2021