Stained Glass Windows of St Luke’s Church
Records suggest that stained glass windows were first introduced in the first century. However, from the beginning of the 11th century, many churches were built in England and it was during this period that stained glass windows were introduced, using coloured glass held in place with strips of lead. These windows typically showed representations of biblical characters and teachings and were used for both decorative and informative purposes. Often windows were donated by members of the congregation or by families as memorials of loved ones.
Unfortunately, many of these early windows were destroyed during the period of the Dissolution of the Monasteries and by Oliver Cromwell’s puritans in the 16th and 17th centuries.
Stained glass windows were produced by both individuals as the designer and manufacturer and by firms employing artists/designers and craftsmen. Commercial manufacture had commenced in the 1830’s, and there were some twenty-five firms that exhibited their work at the Great Exhibition of 1851. However, around this time, William Morris advocated the return to cottage crafts and the use of old skills and together with a number of his peers, formed what is now known as the Arts and Crafts Movement. This in turn led to a major revival of the use of stained glass in churches throughout the country, with members of the public contributing to the commissioning of windows for the local parish church.
Churches are generally large buildings, consequently architects designed the building to include large windows to let in as much light as possible. Typically, windows tended to be either two or three light lancet windows. In addition, trefoil and quatrefoil windows were included within the design, such as those that can be seen in St Luke’s.
When St Luke’s was first built, all of the windows which, with the exception of the East Window, are either two or three light windows, were of plain glass except for an inner border of red glass in line with the tracery of each window. This can be seen today in the upper windows of the nave, the large West window and the glazed windows in the tower. It was not until August 1910 that the first stained glass window, in memory of Isabelle Tomkins (nee dePury ), was installed in the south wall of the chancel. Today, there are a total of eleven such windows all of which, with the exception of the window commemorating the Centenary of St Luke’s, are memorial windows. The windows are a mixture of standard designs and designs by renowned artists.
J. Wilson Forster
Joseph Wilson Forster was a Victorian artist born in the district of Chorlton in 1861. Son of Joseph Binyon Forster and his wife Mary (nee Beakbane), he studied at the Royal Academy School c.1892. In 1894 he married Ethel Rawlinson, daughter of George Rawlinson, Canon of Canterbury. For many years, Joseph Wilson Forster lived at 36 Falconer Road, Bushey, Herts and used brick built studios at the rear of the premises. Described as a Painter and Illustrator and worker in stained glass, he ran a school of Arts and Crafts in Bushey c.1910-1915 and later at 36 Falconer Road. He died in 1938. The East window and one other in St Luke’s were designed by J. Wilson Forster. (see below)
Jessie Bayes was born in London in 1878, the youngest daughter of the artist Alfred Bayes and his wife Emily (nee Fielden) and sister to the painter Walter Bayes and sculptor Gilbert Bayes. They lived in Fellows Road, West Hampstead.
Jessie became a painter, illuminator and muralist in the traditions of Walter Crane and the Arts and Craft Movement and also a designer of stained glass windows. She was appointed a member of the Royal Society of Miniature Painters, Sculptors and Gravers (RMS) in 1906 and a member of the Council 1925-1935. She was also a member of the Church Crafts League and exhibited at the Royal Academy from1908.
Jessie Bayes died whilst living in Paddington in 1970. Five of the windows in St Luke’s were designed by Jessie Bayes, four in collaboration with the firm Goddard & Gibbs and one with the William Aikman studio in Sutton. (see below)
A young Jessie Bayes
Jessie, brothers Walter & Gilbert & sister Emmie
Glenn Carter was born in 1970 and initially trained as a Graphic Designer at Portsmouth College of Art prior to becoming a freelance designer, maker and restorer of painted and stained glass windows, moving to Lincolnshire in 1995. His work on ecclesiastical buildings can be seen in Lincolnshire, Yorkshire and Hampshire and during the period of 1995 to 2000, he worked at Lincoln Cathedral on the restoration of the Dean eye window. His signature, to be seen on many of his designs, including the window in St Luke’s, is a lighthouse.
Jessie Bayes Windows
Goddard & Gibbs
Goddard & Gibbs was initially established by Walter Gibbs in Blackfriars Road, London in 1868. Today, the company works in the production and restoration of traditional stained glass and architectural glass. Windows produced by the company can usually be distinguished by their signature of two entwined letters G , one reversed, although this signature is not included within the St Luke’s window designs.
William Aikman Studio
William Aikman was born in Edinburgh in 1868. He moved to London in 1892, working for James Powell & Sons after which he set up his own studio in 1913. He also taught at Camberwell School of Art following the end of the Great War. In 1921, he became a founder member of the British Society of Master Glass Painters. William Aikman moved to Sutton in 1934 and died in 1959.
Heaton Butler & Bayne
Established in 1852 by Clement Heaton, who went into partnership with Robert Butler in 1855, the firm established a studio in Covent Garden and became a leading firm as Gothic Revival stained glass manufacturers, producing stained glass windows for many churches throughout Britain and Europe. An example of their work can also be seen in Westminster Abbey and Wimborne Minster. The St Luke’s window is signed.
Percy Bacon & Brothers
Percy Bacon was born in Ipswich in 1860 and established his studio in Newman Street, London in 1882. By 1901, he was known as an artist, painter and sculptor, working with his two brothers. The company also worked in collaboration with James Powell & Sons.
The company signature is generally either the Bacon family shield or three bees to represent the three Bacon brothers.
James Powell & Sons
James Powell was born in 1774 and was a Wine Merchant before purchasing, in 1834, Whitefriars Glass, a company which had been established in c.1680. James died in1840 and the firm was then run by his sons and later grandsons. It became a major business in the glass making world with a large part of its production relating to church stained glass windows, particularly in the 19th century during the period of the Gothic Revival. Samples of this work can also be seen in Liverpool cathedral and St Thomas church in New York. The company changed its name to Powell & Sons (Whitefriars) in 1919, and moved to new premises in Wealdstone in 1923. The business closed in 1980.
The Powell designer of the St Luke’s window was J. Hodges, a designer employed in the 1920/30s and the cartoonist was A.F. Erridge, (1899-1961), a glass painter and designer. Their signature is in the form of a monk etched onto their windows, as can be seen on the St Luke’s window, bottom left.
The Windows to be seen in St Luke’s are shown below, together with related text.
Christ in Glory
Joseph Wilson Forster
Edward Blakeway I’Anson & Catherine Blakeway I’Anson
A signed board by J. Wilson Forster describes his design as follows:
In the figure of Christ I have endeavoured to express Immortality and Love inspired & illuminated by the Divine Light emanating from God-whose Almighty Presence is symbolised (in the central light of the tracery) by the Greek letters Alpha & Omega, surrounded by the Circle as expressing Infinitude-the Triangle as signifying the Trinity in Unity and by flames of unquenchable Love.
Beneath the Feet of the Christ blooms the Tree of Life- its roses are symbolical of love- as are also the parent birds with their nest of young ones.
Below is the dawn of the rising sun (which might be expressed in the words:-Arise, shine, for thy light has come, & the glory of the Lord is risen upon thee)
Its rays are reflected in the river of life.
The lilies are emblems of purity.
The censing Angels represent God’s ministers-the one offering up to Him the prayers of His children, the other casting the fruition of them in blessings over the earth.
The groups of Angels are celestial beings, praising God, and expressing their joy on divers instruments of music- as are also the child Angels playing upon harps.
The Vine & the Fig, both are symbols of the Divine Life:- the Vine of the Blood-which is the Life-and the Fig symbolising that it blossoms interiorly.
Above all hovers the Holy Spirit “descending from heaven like a Dove”.
Heaton, Butler & Bayne-(signed)
Isabelle M Tomkins-nee dePury
South Aisle-East to West
St Luke writing his Gospels.
William Aikman studios
Alexander Ingham Whitaker & Berthe C. Whitaker
Jessie Bayes describes her design as follows:
The central figure is St Luke writing his Gospels. Below is a winged Ox, his symbol in Sacred art. Ezekial 1-10.
The Angel on the left carries a stole, the symbol of Obedience and a cup of Healing. The four herbs are Coltsfoot, Euphrasia, Calendula and Balsam. The censer of incense is a symbol of Prayer. Revelations 8-3. The Angel on the right holds the lamp of truth in Holy Scripture. The four herbs are Digitalis, Chamomile, Rose Hips and Marjoram.
Below is the Heart of the Blessed Virgin Mary pierced by a sword, as foretold by Simeon when he uttered the Nunc Dimittis as recorded in the Gospel of St Luke 2-35
Sacrifice of Issac
2nd Lt. Arthur Brickwood-1st Battalion York & Lancaster Regiment
The Power of the Holy Spirit
Centenary of St Luke’s
An extract from Glenn Carter’s description of his design:
I have taken as a theme for my window the Power of the Holy spirit as described by St Luke in the Acts of the Apostles 2: 1-4. In choosing this symbolism of the Holy Spirit I was also mindful of the dedication given to Guildford Cathedral and the village of Grayshott which lies in an area of breckland where fire has been used as a renewing seasonal control. At the top of each flame and lit by the fire is a light or star. These are symbolic of the seven lamps and gifts of the Holy Spirit which are wisdom, understanding, counsel, ghostly strength, knowledge, true godliness and holy fear.
The landscape around the church is of important significance and this is featured in the design and detail of the window. Within the centre light at the top is a glowing area of blue. This area is representative of the Devil’s Punchbowl. Below these blues lie tinted greens forming a backdrop across the whole three windows being interspersed with yellows. The flames offer a strong yet lapping movement upwards through the lights and will be of orangey reds and yellows, interspersed with colours of the landscape; purples for heather, pinks for coniferous woodland.
Within each light there is a small cameo taken from the local landscape. The left hand window contains a spray of heather in a bed of purple and violets. The centre window shows a representation of oak leaves and acorns surrounded by deciduous greens; symbolic of one of the trees that were considered when building the cross and considered a wood of endurance and strength of faith and virtue. It is also the emblem of the National Trust who oversee a lot of the local landscape. In the right hand window and set in a brown tinted background is a gorse branch, again a plant found on the heath and a representative of the fragrance and beauty of the open heath-land.
Below the inclusions are the words, “ Rejoice in the Lord Always” and below the centenary dates 1900-2000.
Adoration of the Shepherds
A. F. Erridge
James Powell & Sons-(signed)
Katherine May Lowry
North Aisle-East to West
St Peter, Christ and St Paul
Goddard & Gibbs
Rev. James M. Jeakes and Albert Simms-Vicars of St Luke’s:1901-1907 & 1908-1926.
St Augustine of Canterbury, St Francis of Assisi, St Hilda of Whitby
Goddard & Gibbs
St Matthew, St John the Divine, St Mark
Goddard & Gibbs
St Clement, St Elizabeth, St Martin
Joseph Wilson Forster
C. E. Lowry
St Patrick, St David, St Margaret
Goddard & Gibbs
Robert C. Duggan
Grayshott Village Archive
Records suggest that stained glass windows were first . . . . . . . .
Featured Article: Stained Glass Windows of St. Luke's Church
Featured Article: The Early Years of St Luke's Church, Grayshott
The early years of St Luke’s Church, Grayshott
Oak Carving of St Luke
Carved by Mr Forsyth
By St Luke’s Church c.1912
Originally, the district of what is now Grayshott parish was part of the Parish of Headley and the early residents of Grayshott had to travel the four miles or so to worship at Headley church. As the population of Grayshott increased and with it the number of residents without transport, the requirement to provide a place of worship in Grayshott became more apparent. As a result of this requirement, in 1873 the Rector of Headley, Reverend Laverty, commenced regular services for the parishioners in a room in Grayshott school which continued until 1879 when Canon Capes, Rector of Bramshott and Rural Dean, took over the responsibility of spiritual care of the Grayshott area of Headley Parish. He continued to hold services in the school and then in the former Dame school at the top of Kingswood Lane, until the growing population eventually resulted in a need for extra facilities.
An Iron Room was then built with funding provided by Canon Capes and Miss James, which was used for services and meetings until1891. Mr Alexander Ingham Whitaker then gave funds to build an Iron Church on land which is now part of the St Luke’s churchyard, between the church vestry and the maintenance shed. Here, services were conducted by the Reverend Percy Wigan until 1895 and thereafter by the Reverend James M. Jeakes, both of whom were curates of Bramshott church. (The Iron Church was later put to good use as a church in Liphook)
Reverend Jeakes lived at Grayshott Cottage, later The Hermitage, which became the Vicarage for St Luke’s. It remained as such until 1971, when it was sold to developers for what is now Vicarage Gardens and a new, smaller vicarage was built.
Soon, with the continuing growth of Grayshott’s population, (by the 1901 census it stood at 666 for the Grayshott area in Hampshire plus 416 for the part of Grayshott in Surrey--some 215 dwellings), parishioners began to think in terms of building a permanent church. A formal meeting was held, presided over by Canon Capes with other attendees being Alexander Ingham Whitaker, Edward.B. I’Anson, Catherine I’Anson, Miss James, all well known benefactors of the village and Professor Williamson, an eminent British scientist who lived in Hindhead. Canon Capes was appointed the Chairman of the Church Building & Endowment Fund committee and he issued an Appeal for Funds notice in September 1896. This notice indicated an initial target amount of £6000 plus an amount for an endowment fund. According to the Reverend Jeakes, there followed “long and troublesome negotiations involved in the formation of an ecclesiastical district out of three parishes in two counties”. However, a resolution was eventually reached for Grayshott to become a parish in its own right.
The building of the Church
The first Grayshott District Magazine, now the Grayshott Parish Magazine, was published in January 1898. This recorded that the fund had reached £3861.13s.4d. which was raised from public donations and the proceeds from various sales and concerts held in the village and in Hindhead Hall and by the publication of the February edition the amount was in excess of £4000. (Today’s value c.£370,000-an extraordinary amount to be raised locally in such a short period of time). Miss C.B. I’Anson had gifted the plot of land, later described as being of 3850 square yards, for the building plus an area of land for the vicarage and Mr Edward Blakeway I’Anson was appointed honorary architect. By June the plans had been agreed and were displayed in the Iron Room for viewing by the public, by which time the building work had commenced.
The church was designed to be built in the “Old English” style and of Bargate stone on the exterior and Headley stone on the interior, the chancel 102 feet in length, forty-two feet in overall width and the nave forty-three feet in height. The tower and spire, which was a later addition, was designed to be 100 feet in height. The arches of the doors and windows, together with the tracery, were to be of Bath stone. The church was built by local builders, Chapman, Lowry & Puttick.
All of the windows of the original building were of plain glass, the stained glass windows we see today being later additions. The first stained glass window, depicting the Resurrection, was a gift from M.& Mme. de Pury in memory of their daughter Isabelle Tomkins, nee dePury and was installed in the south wall of the chancel in August 1910. This was followed by the installation of the East window, a gift of the I’Anson family in memory of their father, Edward Blakeway and sister, Catherine Blakeway I’Anson. This installation, which was carried out following alterations to the form and tracery of the original window, is the subject of Christ in Glory and was dedicated at a special service in November 1918 by the Bishop of Guildford. The window was designed by J. Wilson Forster. The window in the south wall of the nave, installed in early 1917, was a gift of Sir John and Lady Brickwood dedicated to the memory of their son 2nd Lieutenant Arthur Brickwood who died in the First World war in April 1915. (see Schedule re Stained Glass Windows).
The Foundation Stone was laid on Saturday 30th July 1898 at a ceremony attended by more than 200 people, drawn by the ringing of the Iron Church bell, together with the choir of men and boys of Grayshott and the Bramshott Church choir. The ceremony of the laying of the Stone, performed by Miss I’Anson, was part of the service conducted by Canon Capes. For the ceremony, Miss I’Anson used a silver trowel, donated by Mr Whitaker and beneath the Stone were deposited copies of The Times, the Daily Chronicle for 30th July, the Haslemere & Hindhead Herald, the District Magazine and a statement of the Church Building and Endowment Fund to date. The ceremony ended with speeches from Canon Capes and a vote of thanks for Miss I’Anson. This was followed by a gathering in the workmen’s huts, decorated for the occasion, for tea and cakes.
In May 1899, Mr Whitaker invited all those involved in the actual building of the church, some 36 men, to Grayshott Hall where they were treated to supper. By the summer of that year the church was nearing completion and arrangements being made for the Service of Dedication. By October, the fund had reached a total of £5468 from which £1000 was set aside for the Endowment which was to be used toward the provision of a Vicarage and stipend.
Workmen of Chapman, Lowry & Puttick
The first service held in the church was Holy Communion at 8 o’clock on Sunday 17th September 1899, followed by a well attended 11 o’clock service at which Canon Capes was invited to give the sermon. The interior of the church was not fully complete at this time, the choir stalls and some of the planned seating had yet to be fitted. However, many of the fittings, the credence and altar rails, the pulpit, the heating, the organ and many other items, had been gifted or promised by members of the congregation.
By February 1900, the Fund had reached £6193 and at a meeting of the Fund Committee Canon Capes appointed Mr Whitaker and Dr. Lyndon to act as Churchwardens It was also agreed at this meeting that a portion of the Church seating would be allocated to individual parishioners. Parishioners were invited to apply to the Churchwardens, stating the number of seats required and in which part of the Church they preferred to sit. There would be no charge but it was intended that every other row of pew throughout the Church should remain unallocated. Appropriation of seating continued until 1905, when it was decided to allow free seating throughout the Church at all services except Morning Prayer on Sundays and was abolished totally in July 1917.
In May 1900, Grayshott Magazine published a supplement setting out the position of the Building and Endowment Fund and contributions received from each individual. This showed that the costs of building the Church amounted to £5162 and that, having paid all expenses, there remained the sum of £1099.8s.8d. towards the Endowment Fund. In all, in addition to the many gifts which had been received for fitting out the Church, cash donations had been received from over 150 people. In June 1900, a letter written by Dr Lyndon to the Magazine stated that the estimated ongoing annual costs of the church were £320, including a stipend of £220.
In April 1901, the Ecclesiastical Commissions confirmed a Grant of £700 toward the Endowment Fund. Other than £100 received from the Winchester Diocese Society, this was the only help in fundraising received from a public body. All other funds for the Church and the Endowment Fund had been received through donations from the residents of Grayshott and the surrounding area.
Consecration of St Luke’s
A Deed was signed on 13th May 1899 conveying the land and buildings to the Ecclesiastical Commissioners, the new church being dedicated to St Luke within the Diocese of the Bishop of Winchester, this agreement being formalised in 1900.
The Church was consecrated at a service at 3.00pm on the eve of the Festival of St Luke, Wednesday17th October 1900, by the Bishop of Winchester, Bishop Randall Davidson, attended by the Vicar of Aldershot, who had recently been the Bishop’s private chaplain. The Church was packed as the Bishop was met at the door by Reverend Jeakes, the Churchwardens, the Choir and Clergy from many of the churches within the local area. Canon Capes handed the formal petition for the consecration of the Church to the Bishop and the long procession moved toward the chancel. The deeds of conveyance were handed to the Bishop by Dr Lyndon and the Service of Consecration began, the Bishop going to the font, chancel steps, lectern and pulpit and the holy table praying for God’s blessing on them all. The Registrar read the Sentence of Consecration which was then signed by the Bishop. After the service, at the invitation of Mr and Mrs Jeakes, the majority of the 500 who had attended moved to the vicarage, The Hermitage, for a celebratory tea and dance.
At this time however, the ecclesiastical parish of Grayshott was yet to be established and the Church was therefore placed in use as a Chapel of Ease within the Parish of Headley . On 8th October 1900, a petition for Consecration was signed and sent to the Ecclesiastical Commission ,together with a schedule setting out the area of the proposed new Parish and on 30th January 1901, the Ecclesiastical Order in Council was signed by King Edward VII, this being the first such Order signed by the new King.
On 18th May 1901, Reverend James Jeakes was granted a license of incumbency of the new Parish of Grayshott by the Bishop of Winchester and became the first vicar of St Luke’s Church. No formal ceremony of induction was held in view of the fact that he had been administering to the spiritual needs of the people of Grayshott for the past five years. However, Reverend Jeakes’ Declaration of Assent and his reading of the Thirty-nine Articles of Religion took place at morning service on 16th June.
The first marriage recorded in the Register of Marriages for St Luke’s is that of James Muir of Chatham, a surgeon in the Royal Navy, to Eleanor Pearson of Grayshott, on 3rd December 1901 who were married by a visiting vicar. The first marriage officiated by Reverend Jeakes was on 25th December 1901 when James Winchester married Kate Wetton.
Church Tower & Spire
St Luke’s Church pre 1910 St Luke’s Church post 1910
In September 1907, a further appeal was launched to raise funds, estimated requiring to be in the region of £1500, to complete the building of the Church Tower and Spire as originally designed by the Architect, Edward B. I’Anson. The decision to complete this project had been instigated by an anonymous offer of a clock to be installed in the tower provided the project was completed quickly. (It was later revealed that the clock and bells were gifted by Mrs Murray-Smith in memory of her husband George). In November it was announced that the builders Chapman, Lowry & Puttick would commence the building of the tower at a cost of £975. At this stage the fund had reached £850 and renewed efforts to raise the full amount for the whole project included concerts, rummage sales and an Organ Recital. On 1st November 1910, the Bishop of Guildford, John Randolph, who was a suffragan bishop to the Bishop of Winchester, attended a Service of Dedication of the Tower, Spire and clock, and recent gifts which had been donated to the Church.
Note: The suffragan bishop of Guildford was created in the Diocese of Winchester in1874 and the Diocese of Guildford, to which St Luke’s now belongs, was created in 1927. In May 1927, the Ecclesiastical centre for St. Luke’s was transferred from the Diocese of Winchester to the Diocese of Guildford. The Enthronement of the first Bishop of Guildford, the Rt. Rev. John Grieg, Lord Bishop of Gibraltar, took place on 12th July 1927.
The build of the Tower, Spire and installation of the clock also included a tenor bell to strike the hour and two bells to strike the quarters. The tenor bell weighed in excess of 8cwt. In 1931, an appeal was launched to raise funds for an additional five bells and the recasting of the existing bells. This project was completed in the summer of 1931 and a Service of Dedication was held on 19th August of that year by Bishop Golding-Bell of Dorking. Each of the bells bears an inscription relating to the those who gave the bells and the date of casting or where appropriate, recasting. During the First World War, the church bell was run at noon each day as a signal for villagers to remember “in prayer the men who are fighting their country’s battles”.
The Choir appears to have been formed at the time church services were held in the Iron Church. The first choir mistress was Miss Edwards, who ran a nearby private school and the organist was Mr Oliver Chapman who was the Grayshott Postmaster. Miss Edwards retired in December 1908 and was replaced by Mr Tyler, organist and choirmaster of Haslemere Parish Church. In 1903, the Church Council agreed that the choir mistress should be paid an annual income of £12, which was increased to £18 in 1906. It was also agreed in 1906 that a choirboy would be paid two shillings and sixpence per quarter, less one penny for each absence from a service or practice or for any irreverence, inattention etc.
Choir of St Luke’s c 1920/30,s
Each year, the members of the choir went on an annual outing, paid for from donations from members of the congregation. In 1899, seventeen members went on the train to London, in 1900, there were twenty-four on the excursion to Portsmouth and in 1908 similar numbers went on a char-a-banc to Bognor. The service of 15th August 1900, was the first service at which the choir wore surplices and cassocks. These were provided following an appeal for funds, the surplices having been made by members of the congregation and the cassocks by the St. Dunstan Society in the “old English pattern”. In October 1902, a new organ, the gift from daughters of Edward I’Anson in memory of their father and brother Philip, was dedicated at a special service. This organ was originally hand pumped but in August 1914, an appeal was launched to raise funds for a mechanical organ blower. This was installed by Messrs Coxhead & Welch in December 1915.
Miss I’Anson made a gift of a Baptismal Register in June 1901which would hold some 1600 entries. Up until this time all baptisms celebrated at Grayshott had been entered in the register of Headley Parish Church and so Reverend Laverty, the vicar of Headley prepared and gave to Reverend Jeakes a list of the 238 entries relating to Grayshott, which had been registered since 2nd August 1874. This date is the first recorded baptism of a Grayshott child, Jane Elizabeth Harris of Whitmore Bottom, the Officiating Minister being C.W. Kerr. On 5th September 1875, Peter George Robinson, son of Henry and Hannah, “Granny”, Robinson was baptised.. The first child baptised following the consecration of St Luke’s was Bartholomew Selwyn, at a service officiated by Reverend Jeakes who signed as Officiating Minister rather than Curate of Bramshott as on previous occasions.
The first Vestry Meeting took place on 6th June 1901 at Grayshott school. Following a summary of the past history of the Church in Grayshott and the presentation of the accounts, Reverend Jeakes then formally appointed Mr Whitaker as his Churchwarden and Dr. Lyndon was elected Churchwarden for the people of the Parish. It was also proposed that a Church Council be formed in the near future “in order that members of the congregation may have a direct voice in the conduct of the Church Services and the work of the Parish”. (It was not until 1927 that a Church Council became a legal requirement within a parish). In February 1902, the rules for the Council, drawn up by the vicar and Churchwardens, were published in the Grayshott Magazine. These included that the Council would consist of the Clergy, the Churchwardens, ex-officio members and ten elected members, five male and five female. Elected members should be baptized, over 21 years of age and members of St Luke’s congregation entered in the Roll-book, meetings would be held twice a year. Sixty-three voting papers were distributed of which fifty-eight were returned and the first meeting was held on 30th April 1902.
In June 1905, the main event was the consecration of the churchyard, an area included in Miss I’Anson’s gift of land, at a service conducted by the Bishop of Dorking. (see article The Churchyard of St Luke’s & other Memorials)
In September 1906, an appeal was launched by the Churchwardens to raise funds to enable the replacement of the oil lamps with electric lighting. The Hindhead Electric Light Company subsequently installed electricity to the Vestry and seventy-five pendant lights, which were specifically designed for the church, were installed in the summer of 1907 at a cost of some £240. It was agreed by the Church Council to retain the candelabra in the chancel.
Reverend and Mrs Jeakes, together with their three children, two of whom were born in Grayshott, left the Parish in November 1907. On 15th November, the family attended a farewell party in the Village Hall attended by many members of the congregation and other villagers. Presentations of a rose bowl and study furniture were made to the couple. Mr Whitaker and Dr Lyndon each gave a short speech expressing the thanks of the village and their sorrow at departure of Reverend Jeakes and family after twelve years of caring service. Reverend Albert Simms, M.A., B.D., was instituted by the Bishop at his private chapel in Farnham Castle on 31st January 1908 as successor to Reverend Jeakes’ . He remained as vicar of St Luke’s until 1926 after which time Reverend E. Garth Ireland was appointed as the new vicar.
Reverend J. Jeakes Reverend A. Simms Reverend G. Ireland
Gifts to the Church
In December 1912, Mrs Whitaker presented the Church with a book, bound in green calf with gilt lettering and written by Mr Whitaker, containing the official list of all gifts to St Luke’s Church, including monies collected for the building. (Entries have continued to be made up to the present day). In addition to the monies collected for the Church Building Fund, there were numerous gifts for the fitting of the interior of the church. These included the mosaic paving of the chancel, the heating apparatus, the oak pulpit and altar, seating and choir stalls, the lectern, bible and prayer books. The brass cross was specifically designed for the Church and an oak carving of St Luke, carved by a Mr Forsyth of Worcester, was positioned above the porch. This figure is now kept within the Church. The stone Font had been given to the church by Canon Capes of Bramshott church where it had been in use for a number of years. The new organ, which was received from the Misses I’Anson in 1902, was dedicated at a special service on 9th September 1902
From the very beginning, St Luke’s Church played an active role in village life. It became the centre for many activities outside the church, such as the Band of Mercy, the Mothers’ Union, the Boys and the Girls Clubs, the Men’s Club and of course, the Village School.
It is perhaps worth remembering at this time, that this magnificent church, which became and remains at the centre of so much of our village life, was built in its entirety by the generosity of the residents and friends of Grayshott and its surrounding area.
The Grayshott Magazine
Cover of first Magazine-January 1898
Note: Services in Temporary Church
Sketch of St Luke’s drawn by
Miss Madeleine de Pury May 1900
In the first edition of the Grayshott Magazine, dated January 1898 and priced at two pence, it was stated that the aim was “to keep in touch with the common life of the village and to help make better known whatever ought to be common interest.--We have our Schools and our Clubs, our Classes and our Entertainments. So far as space allows, we hope to tell, month by month, what is going on in these different ways”.
From the beginning, the magazine, produced monthly and edited by succeeding vicars of Grayshott, continued to inform recipients of the events of the village. In addition to church news and notices, the magazine contained reports on the activities of the various clubs, lectures, entertainments and future plans, of the time. It was used for a number of appeals, such as the Church Building Fund, and in early editions, it covered reports on the School, the Hindhead Working Men’s Club, The Provident Club, the Church Lads Brigade, the Mothers’ Meetings and many other village activities. Many local businesses took space in the Magazine to advertise their business (see Article Early Businesses in Grayshott). The 1897 Accounts of Grayshott Cricket Club were included in February 1898 together with reports on the Band of Mercy, the Choral Society and Ambulance Classes held.
For many years, the Magazine listed the school attendance record of each child by name and Annual Reports of the School Accounts, School Government Grants and a Report of Religious instruction were published, together with the School Inspector’s Report. Also recorded were all Baptisms, Marriages and Burials relating to members of the Church.
For many months, under the editorship of Reverend Simms, a detailed report of the weather in Grayshott for the previous month was published with hours of sun and inches of rain recorded.
The Magazine was also used to inform on items of legislation such as the Reform of the Poor Law, Education Bills and on national issues such as the Coal Strike of 1912. Throughout the Great War, the Roll of Honour, containing the names of every man serving in the military, his regiment and place of posting, was published on a monthly basis together with the names of those killed, wounded or taken prisoner. (see Article on Grayshott during the Great War).
Since publication of the first edition and up to the present day, the Magazine has followed its initial aims of recording the progress of village life in the parish of Grayshott and its surrounding area.
Grayshott Village Archive
St Luke’s Parish Church
Publications of Grayshott Magazine
Surrey History Centre, Woking
Hampshire Archive, Winchester
Stained Glass windows;
In addition to those mentioned above, the following windows have subsequently been installed:
In memory of Edward B. I’Anson & Catherine B. I’Anson, designed by J.Wilson Forster depicting Christ in Glory.
South Wall of Chancel:
In memory of Isabelle M. Tomkins, nee de Pury, depicting the Resurrection.
South Aisle:---East to West
In memory of Alexander Ingham Whitaker and Berthe C. Whitaker, designed by Jessie Bayes, it depicts St Luke.
In memory of 2nd Lt. Arthur Brickwood, depicts Sacrifice of Issac.
To commemorate the Centenary of St Luke’s Church, window designed by Glenn Carter to reflect the local area with a small cameo from the local landscape. Inscribed with the words “Rejoice in the Lord Always” and the years 1900 and 2000, the window depicts The Power of the Holy Spirit
In memory of Katherine May Lowry, window installed in 1932/3 depicting Adoration of the Shepherds.
North Aisle:---East to West
In memory of Rev. James M. Jeakes and Albert E.N. Simms, designed by Jessie Bayes depicting St. Peter, Christ and St. Paul,
In memory of Marjory Pearman, window designed by Jessie Bayes depicting St. Augustine, St Francis of Assisi, St. Hilda of Whitby.
In memory of Theodore Pearman, window also designed by Jessie Bayes, depicting St. Matthew, St. John the Divine, St. Mark.
In memory of C. E. Lowry, window designed by J. Wilson Forster depicting St. Clement, St. Elizabeth, St. Martin.
In memory of Robert C. Duggan, window designed by Jessie Bayes depicting St. Margaret, St. David, St. Patrick.
Originally, the district of what is now Grayshott parish was part of the . . . . . . .
Featured Article: Grayshott Hall & Alexander Ingham Whitaker
Grayshott Hall & Alexander Ingham Whitaker
Since the beginnings of the village, Grayshott Hall has been largely associated with the Whitaker family but by the time the Whitakers arrived the Hall, originally part of the extensive manor of Wishanger Estate which covered an area of land from Hindhead to Frensham, had, in one form or another, existed for many years.
Early records suggest that in 1167 the overlord of the manor was Richard of Ilchester, the Bishop of Winchester, who at the time granted to the abbey of Waverley, “one hide” of his land of Wishanger. This appears to be an area of land in the Dockenfield vicinity, the ownership of which changed hands a number of times throughout the thirteenth to seventeenth centuries.
The Baker family of Headley, whose ancestors can be traced back to mid 16th century, acquired the estate from a Gerard Fleetwood in 1618. Over a period of time in the 1670’s the estate was acquired by John Speed of Southampton who had married Elizabeth, a daughter of Christopher Baker. John Speed was a third generation member of John Speed, an Antiquarian and Historian who was born in Cheshire in 1552 and later moved to London. Elizabeth died in 1677 leaving John with four young children, one of whom was another John, aged four. Here the Speed family history gets somewhat confusing but following the death of a John Myles Speed in 1780, his widow Harriet married John Silvester.
The estate was then sold in 1797 by the Silvester family for the sum of £4500 to Sir Thomas Miller, 5th Baronet, of Froyle. The first baronet of the Miller family, also Sir Thomas, had been a J.P., a Mayor of Chichester, a member of Parliament and was appointed Baronet by Queen Anne in 1705.
Sir Thomas, 5th Baronet, was a member of Parliament for Lewis, 1774-1778 and Portsmouth 1806-1816, had purchased Froyle Place and the manor of Froyle in 1770. In 1816 his estate passed to his son, the 6th Baronet, Sir Thomas Combe Miller who had become a Priest and Vicar of Froyle in 1811. He also inherited additional land, including the manors of Fishbourne and Ludshott.
In 1868, the Wishanger Estate was sold by the executors of Sir Thomas to a John Rouse Phillips who, it would appear, was a descendent of the Phillips brewery family. Born in Chipping Norton in 1816, the 1871 census records him to be living at the Hall together with his wife Elizabeth and in 1881, also with his son Walter Lawny, then aged 30 years. Income is stated as being derived from the land. At this time the manor is described as being of some 1800acres. It is believed that it was Phillips who changed the name of the property to Grayshott Hall.
In 1860‘s, Grayshott Farm was described as a two storey stone and brick house with small low rooms and lighted by open casements with diamond panes. In 1861, the census records that the building was occupied by John James Oland, his wife Sannah, four sons, three daughters and Ann Newell a house servant. John Oland was an auctioneer and valuer. (In March 1861, a mortgage is recorded as being issued by Oland, of Grayshott to James Knight, a Banker and Financier who, with his brother John owned a bank in Castle Street, Farnham, in respect “land formerly waste of Headley Common with houses thereon and land at Hindhead Common”).
In 1867 Alfred Tennyson took a two year lease on the property from an Edmund Cornewall, as a base from which to find a suitable site in the district on which to build a permanent home. Tennyson had first visited the area in 1866 to visit a friend, Anne Gilchrist (nee Burrows), who lived in Shottermill, having moved there from Chelsea following the death of her husband. For many years the Gilchrists had moved in literary circles which included the likes of Dante and Michael Rossetti, Ford Madox Brown and other men of distinction. Following the Tennysons’ acceptance of the lease on Grayshott Farm, Mrs Gilchrist undertook to over see the furnishing of the home prior to them moving in together with their three servants.
The Whitaker Family
Alexander Ingham Whitaker
In 1884, following the death of Phillips, the estate was sold by his executors to Joseph Whitaker, a wine merchant, then of Palermo, Sicily but who also had an estate, Hesley Hall in Tickhill, Yorkshire. The sum paid was £50,954 and when Joseph died a year later, the property passed to his son Alexander Ingham Whitaker. By this time the manorial rights had ceased to exist but the estate comprised of a number of properties including Grayshott Farm ,which we now know as Grayshott Hall.
Joseph Whitaker was born in Yorkshire in August 1802, the son of Joseph Whitaker and his wife Mary (nee Ingham). Mary Ingham was the daughter of William and Betty Ingham and brother to Benjamin, who had moved to Sicily in 1806 and established himself as an extremely successful wine merchant. He is reputed to have tamed the Sicilian mafia to become a Sicilian baron and to move in the highest circles of Sicilian society. As his business expanded he employed a number of his nephews, one of whom was William, the second son of Joseph and Mary Whitaker who moved to Sicily in 1816. Unfortunately, William died two years later and his place was taken by his younger brother, Joseph who moved to Sicily in 1819.
In 1837 Joseph married in Naples, Italy, Eliza Sophia Sanderson, born in Malta in 1816, the daughter of a naval captain from Durham. Joseph and Eliza had twelve children, three girls and nine boys, all born in Palermo. The second youngest, Alexander Ingham Whitaker, was born in September 1857 and educated at Harrow and Trinity College, Cambridge. The 1891 census records Alexander Ingham Whitaker living at Grayshott Hall together with a Housekeeper, Cook, four Housemaids, a Butler, Footman and a Houseboy.
Eliza Sophia Sanderson Sons of Joseph & Eliza
Robert, Albert, Joseph, Joshua, Alexander, Arthur
Hyde Park, London, 1905
In 1895, Alexander married Berthe DePury, eldest daughter of David DePury who came from Switzerland and lived in Grayshott House, Headley Road. Berthe was a granddaughter of Edward I’Anson and niece of Miss Catherine I’Anson.
During their time in Grayshott the couple became generous benefactors to the village including the gift to the village of various plots of land totalling some thirteen acres, mainly for use as playing fields. Alexander took an active interest in the development of the village as a whole including taking a major role in the running of the village school, the building of the church and the village hall, of which he was a Trustee. He was a Parish Councillor of Headley from 1894 until 1908, a member of Grayshott Parish Council from1902, becoming Chairman in 1908 until he left the village in1927. He also served as a Justice of the Peace and became High Sheriff of the County of Southampton in March 1919.
Alexander and Berthe Whitaker lived in Grayshott Hall until 1927 when it was sold to Sir George Hennessy and they moved away from Grayshott to Bruges, Belgium where Alexander died in 1933. He is buried in St Luke’s churchyard. Berthe returned to live in Redcroft, Grayshott where she died in May 1956.
Etching of Grayshott Hall c.1882
As noted above, in the 1860’s Grayshott Hall was a small stone and brick house but by 1868 when it was acquired by John Rouse Phillips, it is described as a substantial stone and slate building and estate comprising 1794 acres divided into five holdings --Upper Hearn Farm, Lower Hearn Farm, Wishanger Manor Farm, Land of Nod Farm and Grayshott Hall Farm, extending in area from Hindhead to Frensham Pond. The land tax is recorded as £52.18s.6d and Tithe Charge £214.4s.11d. per annum.
Grayshott Hall Farm estate comprised 224 acres together with Purchase Farm of approximately forty acres, two houses with two bedrooms each and a three-bed roomed house .
The building itself included:
Ground Floor - Drawing and Dining roomsKitchen, Breakfast room, Dairy room and Pantry.
First Floor - Eight bedrooms and a Water Closet
Stabling for four Horses
Cow Shed, Wood Shed, Coach House and Barn.
By the time the estate was purchased by the Whitakers, the Hall had been further modernised and was described as “a picturesque modern residence erected within the past five years from locally quarried Bargate stone”. It included a good carriage drive, large level lawn, walled kitchen garden and a large Entrance Lodge.
The entrance to the Hall was through an ornamental porch into an inner lobby with access to the entrance hall and corridor. Internally, it included a large drawing room, a conservatory, a first floor billiard room with balcony and a total of nine bedrooms. It had extensive domestic offices, including a dairy, scullery, knife house, coal house and a wine cellar. The main house contained water closets but the domestic area only had earth closets.
Externally there was a stable yard, a coach house for six carriages and stabling for five horses, a large loose box with four stalls, a harness room and a groom’s bedroom. Behind the stable yard were farm buildings, stabling for six carthorses, a four bay cart shed and various other enclosures. The land measured five acres and water to the premises was pumped from Whitmore Bottom.
Edwardian Grayshott Hall
In 1886, Alexander carried out extensive renovations to the buildings, together with a number of additions. The tower, as we see it today with the motto “Pax Intrantibus-Salus Exeuntibus”--(Peace as you enter-Health as you leave), was an addition believed to be in the early 1900’s, although the date inscribed with the motto is 1887.. The architect for all of this work was Edward Blakeway I’Anson. In 1921 the estate was divided and much of it was sold although the Whitakers continued to live in the Hall until 1927. During the Whitakers time, the Hall hosted numerous events connected with Grayshott village. Within the grounds of the Hall was a cricket ground which the village cricket club used, team members of which included Arthur Conan Doyle, John Macmillan, later to become Bishop of Guildford, Alexander Ingham Whitaker, Oliver and Bert Chapman and other local residents, As well as the cricket matches, there were a number of annual events held in the Hall and Grounds. These included the annual Band of Mercy Show, Christmas parties for the school children, annual sports days and a tea party attended by nearly a thousand guests to celebrate the coronation of Edward Vll. Each year the children of the village were presented with a Mug on which is inscribed “Grayshott Hall” and the year.
Following the Whitakers, Sir George Hennessy, 1st Baron of Windlesham O.B.E., who also owned a property in Belgrave Square, London, occupied the Hall. He was a J.P. and one time High Sheriff of Hampshire and Member of Parliament for Winchester for a number of years, serving under both Andrew Bonar Law and Ramsey Macdonald. Sir George was created a Baronet in 1927 and raised to a peerage as Baron in 1937. He had served as a Major in the army during the Great War. The Hall remained a private residence for a number of owners until it was purchased in 1960 by a Mr A.S. Stalbow on behalf of G.R.(Holdings) PLC with the purpose of converting it into the Health Club which opened in 1965. Further development and refurbishment of the buildings has taken place over the subsequent years, together with another change of ownership, for it to become Grayshott Spa as we know it today.
Grayshott Village Archive
Grayshott - Story of a Hampshire Village by J. H. Smith.
Hindhead - The English Switzerland by Thomas Wright.
J. O. Smith - copy of etching of Hall.
Grayshott Spa - Hall photographs
Since the beginnings of the village, Grayshott Hall has been . . . . . . .
Featured Article: West Down, Hindhead
A HISTORY OF WEST DOWN
HINDHEAD GU26 6BQ
“This house was built for Marian J James by G Faulkner Armitage
Anno Domini MDCCCXCIII”
Inscription above Fireplace
This inscription is carved in the woodwork above the fireplace in the present drawing room of the house known as West Down, Hindhead in Surrey. To elaborate on this carving:
Miss Marian James at her piano
Marian Julia James (1830 - 1910) was described by Professor Clyde Binfield in an article as “rich, artistic, musical, conservationist and intense”. Her father listed his occupation as “Editor of Literary and Musical Works” which would account for her musical talents. The Binfield article further mentioned that she was an intimate of and partner in the cultural philanthropy of Mrs S Marshall Bulley. Miss James’s wealth came from a legacy to her of £83,031 (2009 = £7,270,000) from a Miss Emily Coates who died at Looe in Cornwall on 26th September 1888 but who had lived for at least 30 years at Upper Terrace in Hampstead. Miss Coates was a long time friend of Miss James and her widowed mother, who lived for many years at Upper Terrace Hampstead with Miss Coates. The Coates family had earned their money as wine merchants since 1800. Miss James was aged 57 when she received her bequest and was able to devote herself to good works as well as good living.
As she was so advanced in years before she acquired her wealth a resume of her life and family background is at an Annex to this brief.
George Faulkner Armitage (1849-1937) was the son of a prosperous cotton merchant in the North West of England but rather than follow into the family business he chose to become an architect and furniture designer. He became internationally famous. and his involvement with West Down is confirmed by books relating to his business where he gives Miss James as the client for a house, coach house, pigeon home, stable for six horses and semi detached cottages all between 1892-96. Incidentally he became Mayor of Altrincham in Cheshire during the whole of the First World War. The Armitage family were very involved with another family of cotton spinners that is the Bulleys. The Bulley family came from Devon and had migrated to New Brighton in the Wirral to continue their cotton spinning business. Samuel Bulley, the founder, had fourteen surviving children and by marriage they became intertwined with the Armitage family and they feature in the history of West Down
Given the quality of the construction of West Down Miss James clearly believed in Hillarie Belloc’s maxim that:
“It is the business of the wealthy man to give employment to the artisan”
The mosaic floor on the two levels of the entrance Hall, the cloak room and the front door oak porch is of the highest standard. Mr Tony Eddon of Grayshott, whose father had been a mosaic tile installer, was very impressed by the quality. The dining/ball room floor is of exquisite parquet laid wood and was underpinned by an extremely long rolled steel joint in the basement that extends the entire length and gives the floor a ‘sprung’ feeling. The windows of the dining/ball room are very imaginative, the window is set in a bay overlooking the garden and the panes of glass are themselves curved giving a good view by day but at night with total internal reflection look black. The main staircase is some four to five feet wide; it goes up on three sides of a square with two small landings at the turns. At the higher of the small landings is a mezzanine floor with windows looking over the north approach to the house. The staircase is made of walnut wood with elaborate carved twisted spindles. The landing at the top of the stairs was extremely large and was illuminated by windows on both north and south sides of the house, the mezzanine floor window and also by light let in through glass panels in the roof to a large nine panel horizontal stained glass window of intricate design set into the ceiling. The landing also had French windows that opened on to an 18 foot lead covered balcony with oak rails that gave a wonderful view towards the South Downs and Petworth hills. The house had an original and innovative domestic heating arrangement with a forced hot air system, in addition to the usual fireplaces. There was a large boiler in the basement using solid fuel and the resulting hot air was ducted to all the ground floor rooms and in the inner hall in the well of the staircase was a large metal grill that directed the hot air to the upper floor. On the roof between the glass panels there was a large flat lead covered area which had the function of collecting rainwater for domestic use. The water was held in enormous slate tanks in the attic. The pieces of slate were about the size of half a billiard table and were cemented and bolted together. One was marked “Stables” indicating the extent of the water system. The stables are on the north side of the house and were later used as garages but are now derelict. The Servant’s Wing was also on the north side of the main house and had connecting doors to the upper floor of the main house for domestic duties and at the ground floor level for service from the kitchen and for the butler to attend the front door. There were six living in servants for the benefit of the six residents! Grooms, carriage drivers, stable lads, footmen etc lived in separate accommodation between the main house and the main road referred to as The Lodge. Miss James’s eleven gardeners lived in two cottages near to Hazel Grove (Fir Cottage and Fir Tree Cottage).The other residents of the main house beside Miss James were from the Bulley family. Earlier mention was made of Miss James’s friend, Mrs Bulley (nee Annie Margaret Armitage) who was wife of Mr S Marshall Bulley. He was ninth of a Samuel Bulley’s fourteen surviving children. Marshall’s eldest sister Ella Bulley had married Rev Elkanah Armitage who two years later became Marshall Bulley’s brother-in-law when he married Annie Armitage, the sister of Elkanah. Ella Armitage and Mrs S Marshall Bulley were related to G Faulkner Armitage who according to the inscription built the house for Miss James. As well as the inscription above the fireplace the four sided finial at the bottom of the walnut staircase in West Down has the initials “MJJ”; “SMB”; “AMB” and “FMB” carved into heraldic shields. These are assumed to refer to the occupants; Marian Julia James; Samuel Marshall Bulley; Annie Margaret Bulley and Felix Marshall Bulley their son.
Marian Julia James
Samuel Marshall Bulley
Annie Margaret Bulley (nee Armitage)
Felix M Bulley
Marian Julia James (1830 - 1910) was described by Professor Clyde Binfield in an article as . . . . . . . . .
Featured Article: Grayshott Village Hall & Institute
Grayshott Village Hall & Institute
During the early years, meetings and social gatherings took place in the Iron Room, a gift from Miss James in1889, which was situated in Stoney Bottom and the school room, but as the population of Grayshott increased it became apparent that these venues were inadequate for the purpose. It was therefore proposed that the village should have a Village Hall and in June 1900 an announcement was made in the Parish Magazine that an offer of £500 had been received on the condition that a suitable site was acquired and the balance of the required funds, estimated to be in the region of £2000, raised.
A meeting was held on July 18th 1900 to discuss plans for the establishment of a Village Hall and Club Room for Grayshott and its neighbourhood. It was originally planned to hold the meeting in the Iron Room but, due to the intense heat of the day, it was adjourned to “a shady glade in the fir woods of Mrs Anderson Wells”. The meeting was attended by in excess of thirty people. Mr Marshall Bulley took the Chair and explained the scope of the proposal--to combine a good hall, for lectures and public entertainment, with a club room, reading room, billiard rooms etc. and Trustees and a working Committee were appointed. The Trustees were Mr Samuel Marshall Bulley, of Westdown, Hindhead, Mr John Macmillan, of Bramshott Chase (who was to become Bishop of Guildford), Mr Alexander Ingham Whitaker, of Grayshott Hall and Mr Aneurin Williams, of Wheelside, Hindhead, plus representatives from Hampshire County Council. An appeal for donations was made and by September a further £143.8s had been raised in addition to the initial £500.
A Trust Deed dated 14th February 1901 was prepared providing that the Institute was “for material improvement social intercourse and amusement mental and moral culture literary pursuits and physical training and for such general public or philanthropic objects as the Trustee may from time to time approve” it went on to say “no person to be excluded on the grounds of class, party, sex or creed”. A restrictive covenant included in the land conveyance stated that that “no public house, beer shop or tavern may be erected, nor any band practice take place on the premises”. At this time, Grayshott was not a separate parish and the terms of the Trust Deed stated that the hall was for the use of the inhabitants of the Parishes of Headley, Bramshott, Shottermill, Frensham and Thursley “as can reasonably be construed as being in the neighbourhood of the district called Hindhead and its immediate neighbourhood”. It was therefore announced that the hall was to be known as “The Grayshott and Hindhead Institute and Village Hall”. A letter was prepared by the Committee giving full details of the overall proposal for the project and distributed throughout the area. It was also stated at this time that some £800 had now been received overall, in addition to the gift of the land, but that the latest estimated cost of the project had now risen to £3500.
In January 1901, it was announced that a conveyance of land given by Mrs Plimpton-Smith in memory of her brother Dr. Felix Plimpton, had been completed and a further area of land for the project had been purchased from Mrs Plimpton- Smith for £100.
A Conveyance dated 14th February 1901 conveys a piece of land, situated on the corner of Boundary Road and Headley Road, from Mrs Constance Eliza Smith--widow, to the Trustees of the Village Hall and Institute. An Indenture dated 20th January 1903 records the purchase of the said land, at a cost of £592. (This land had originally been the subject of a conveyance from H.J. Blake to a C.D. Alexander on 1st June 1883 and from Laura Somers to John Allen on 20th August 1890).
By the autumn of 1901, work had commenced on the laying of the foundations on the site although the funding was not yet fully in place. A letter from Mr Marshall Bulley was published in the Parish Magazine stating that the Committee “were seeking to secure a large list of small donations from the readers. Mrs Lyndon, Treasurer, would receive the donations direct on behalf of the Committee, alternatively, it is suggested that in November, small amounts of monies could also be given to the ladies who distributed the Magazine and they would pass them on to the Treasurer”. As a result, numerous donations were received in amounts from 6d to £15 with additional funds being received as a result of fund raising events.
By May 1902, the current Village Hall, excluding the Library building, a later addition in 1906, designed by architects Read & MacDonald and built by local builders Chapman, Lowry and Puttick, whose tender for the work was £3430,was complete. A notice was published in the Parish Magazine that there was to be an official opening ceremony in the evening of Thursday 23rd May 1902 and it was planned for there to be entertainment by the Grayshott Dramatic Society, the String Band, and the Choral Society.
The Grayshott and Hindhead Institute and Village Hall c.1902
The Hall, often known as the Institute, was soon put to good use. A public meeting was held in early June to consider a “memorial of peace” following the end of the Boer War, an entertaining evening put on by children to a packed Hall on 13th June and the village Flower Show held on 23rd July. In September 1902 an announcement was made to the effect that the autumn and winter Technical classes would be held in the Technical Room of the Village Hall, subjects to be included were Woodcarving at a fee of two shillings for twenty-four lessons, Horticulture at a fee of one shilling for five or six lessons and Nursing for Women. In October it was announced that the Village Hall Men’s Club would commence with thirty-nine members. By this time, plans were in place to use the Institute for Technical classes, Gymnasium classes, Musical drill, Choral Society, Orchestral Society and various Lectures. In November the Hall was full to overflowing when a party from Miss Weston’s “Sailors Rest,” Portsmouth, presented an evening with “The Bluejackets in the Fo’cle”, with total ticket sales amounting to £17. With all this activity the Institute soon became the centre for many organisations of the village, as well as the offices of the recently formed Parish Council.
Performance of Beauty and the Barge - Grayshott Dramatic Society c.1920's
A Committee had been formed to organise the village celebrations to mark the coronation of Edward V11 on 26th June 1902. At the final meeting of the Committee held in the Iron Room on 11th July, it was agreed to donate a sum of money from the closing excess of funds to buy a clock for the Lecture Room of the new Village Hall.
In February 1903 a Library was opened in the main building with 600 books, opening times being on Wednesday afternoons and Saturday mornings. Books were free to annual subscribers and at a charge of one penny per volume to all others. The Parish Magazine of December 1903 listed many of the books available from the library at the time and by 1907 it is recorded that the library, run by Mrs Marshall Bulley, contained some 1100 books.
Many well attended lectures on a wide range of subjects were held in the Hall, given by both local people and guest speakers from further afield, such as Apsley Cherry-Garrard who was a member of Scott’s team on the fateful South Pole expedition of 1912 .He gave a lecture in the Hall on 5th February1914. Many of these lectures were illustrated with the use of a borrowed limelight lantern or oil lantern. In January 1904, it was suggested that an electric lantern be purchased for the Hall at an estimated cost of £30-£40 including a screen. The first lecture using the new lantern was on 7th October 1904.
It is not clear where the bulk of the money came from to build the Hall but once it was completed, it was the intention that all ongoing costs be financed by receipts from lettings. The accounts for the year to 31st August 1904 showed a total income of £141.8s.3d. equivalent today to some £12300 (today the current figure is in the region of £38,000). Receipts for 1903/4 included:-
Men’s Club £40, Concerts & Entertainments £31.2s.9d, Schools £ 27.12s, Technical Room £10.5s and income from Village Dances, Dramatic, Orchestral & Choral Societies, Society of Artists and the Library £6.
Expenditure for 1903/4 amounted to £132.2s.7d including:-
Wages £39.4s.6d.,Coals £27.3s.3d, Electric Light £45.0s.8d. and Repairs £8.3s.1d. By the end of August 1905, income from the Library alone amounted to £59.8s.10d against expenditure of £56.5s.5d on books, magazines and shelving.
In November 1905,the Chairman of the Trustees, Mr Marshall Bulley, included a short report with the Accounts. In it he stated that the Institute was “in fair working order and it is very seldom that the hall is not used for one purpose or another, and it is not infrequent for every room in the building to be occupied on the same night”. He went on to mention the numerous village organisations which had used the hall and that it had now reached the stage of being self supporting and for the first time it had been possible to lay a small balance aside He completed his Report stating that “the work carried on favourably affects the welfare and happiness of the village which is the end and object held in view”.
By the spring of 1906, the usage of the Institute was at such a high level that consideration was given to the building of a small hall on the side of the existing building. It was estimated that the cost for this would be in the region of £500. Mr and Mrs Marshall Bulley offered £400 on the condition that the remaining £100 be raised by the community and this was quickly achieved, with a total sum of £137. 8s 0d. being received. Mr Falconer MacDonald was appointed Architect and Chapman Lowry & Puttick were again appointed builders. The work began in July on what was to become known as the Small Hall, later to become the existing Library building.
In April 1907, the Trustees wrote to Grayshott Parish Council proposing that ownership of the Institute, including the library of some 1100 books, be passed over to the Parish providing the Council continued to run it on the terms of the existing Trust Deed. At this time the land, buildings, furniture and fittings were valued at £5531.This offer was unanimously accepted at a Council meeting on 3rd May and at the Annual Parish Meeting on 14th May. The Conveyance was signed on 20th August 1907 and a Management Committee was appointed consisting of the then Parish Councillors, together with a representative each from the Higher Education Committee, the Entertainment Committee, The Friendly Society and two members of the Village Hall Men’s Club. Mr Alexander Ingham Whitaker was elected Chairman and Miss Dora Hetch was appointed Secretary.
The Trustees held the first “Annual Meeting” on 26th September 1907 at which it was confirmed a bank account had been established with the Capital & Counties Bank, Haslemere. The Parish Council Meeting on 15th October 1907 recorded that the Recreation Committee had passed over the ownership of the Lantern and gymnasium apparatus and other equipment to the Hall. It was also confirmed that the Institute was insured with Lloyds at the rate of 2s.6d. per cent with buildings insured for £4500 and Furniture & Fittings, including the caretakers furniture, at £500.
At the Annual Parish Meeting on 17th March 1908, the Chairman, Mr Whitaker confirmed that the assets had been duly transferred free from all costs and that the aim was to continue to let the halls out at as low rent as possible. The scale of charges for use of the Hall was 2s.6d. for evening meetings of Societies and Committees and 1s 6d. for afternoon meetings-“with fire”. The price for private village dances was one and a half guineas. It was further agreed “that smoking be allowed occasionally in the halls, special permission to be given by the Secretary”. In the year ending 31st August 1908, income from rental of the halls and equipment amounted to £176.12s.7d. against an overall expenditure of £175. 4s.3d.
In1908, Mr Whitaker reported that “a suitable Fire Station” had been erected on the property. It was also agreed that one fireman in uniform should be admitted free of charge to any public entertainment held at the Institute. The Grayshott & Hindhead Fire Brigade, now the Grayshott Fire Brigade, had been formed in 1906 and the wooden station building was erected on the frontage of Headley Road, in front of the Small Hall. A small extension was added to the east of this building in 1929. In 1960, the area used by the Bowling Club was sold for £950 to the Hampshire Fire Brigade in order for a new station to be built to replace the existing wooden building. In January 1971, an additional small area of land behind the Fire Station was sold to the Fire Service for £150.
Tennis Courts-Bowling Green
A large area of lawn bordered Boundary Road when the property was initially developed and this was later used as tennis courts. In April 1908, the Committee agreed hire charges of 3d per person per hour and 3d for racket hire. The Grayshott Tennis Club was officially formed in November 1911. A second tennis court was added in 1912 and the courts were enclosed with a 5ft high wire netting fence. By 1923, it was agreed that a new site be sought where hard courts could be built. Initially it was proposed to use part of Phillips Green for four hard courts, subject to Parish Council permission, but this proposal was dropped and new courts built on the present site by the recreation ground. In 1925, it was agreed to cease use of the courts on the Village Hall site and in 1926 the courts were converted to a bowling green for hire by the Bowling Club at the rate of £5 p.a. for five years. The Club continued to be based here until the site was sold in 1960, as mentioned above.
At a meeting of the Trustees in January 1910, it was recorded that a letter had been received from Mrs Marshall Bulley in which she suggested the placing of commemorative tablets in the large Hall. The proposal was agreed by the Trustees and the first such tablet, to an approved design, was erected in memory of Mr Samuel Marshall Bulley. In 1957, the tablets were removed from the Hall and refurbished before being re-hung in the their present site in the vestibule. Today, there are seventeen such tablets including those in memory of Miss Catherine I’Anson, Miss James, Rev. James Jeakes, Dr. Charles Lyndon and Mr Alexander Ingham Whitaker.
In January 1911, Dr Lyndon wrote to the Council offering to provide and erect a wooden room, with corrugated roof on a brick foundation to the rear of the premises to be used as a storeroom. The offer was duly accepted and the building completed.
In March 1912, the Men’s Club applied for permission to sell beer on the premises. In the original conveyance of the land, a covenant provided that no alcoholic sales were permitted up until 14th January 1911 and only after such date with permission of the Trustees. A resolution of the Parish Council duly granted permission provided that it was only consumed within the Clubroom. The Management Committee set the rules to state “that not more than two pints be supplied to any one member during one evening and that no beer be sold before 6pm and after 10pm”, later amended to include “before 1pm on Saturdays”. `Also “that no beer be sold to members under the age of eighteen and that no beer be taken out of the Club Room”.
Grayshott & Hindhead Institute and Village Hall c.1911/14
Billeting of Troops
At the Parish Council meeting of 20th October 1914, mention was made of the possible billeting of troops in the Institute and use of the Institute as a Recreation Room for the soldiers of the proposed Bramshott Camp. It was agreed that Mr. Wray make the best possible arrangement with the authorities. The 7th King’s Royal Rifles Brigade, succeeded by the 8th Battalion Rifle Brigade, moved into the Hall on 12th November 1914. In the event only the large hall and the library were used for actual billeting. At the Parish Meeting of 19th January 1915, Mr Wray reported to the council that all parts of the Institute with the exception of the caretakers accommodation had been let at the rate of 9d. per head per night and that £197 had been received in the first nine weeks. Tents had been erected on the tennis courts and it was confirmed that compensation would be sought for any damage caused. The troops finally vacated the premises on 9th April 1915 by which time a total of £444.8s.3d.rental had been received. The use of the hall as a Recreation Room had lasted for only five days prior to the troops moving in, but continued once again after they left. In June 1917, it was agreed that the troops be given permission to use the tennis courts.
In April 1928, the Management Committee requested that the Parish Council hold the Securities in the Trust as an Endowment Fund, the dividends of which were to be paid to the Committee’s account as part of its annual income. These Securities comprised of £400 of five percent Debenture Stock of Haslemere & District Gas Company and £20 five & three-quarters percent West Australian Stock. A Resolution to this effect was passed at the Parish Council Meeting on 17th April 1928.
Change of Name
At a meeting of the Management Committee on 11th December 1936, it was agreed that the present name of the Grayshott & Hindhead Institute and Village Hall was both cumbrous and misleading, particularly since Hindhead had had its own Village Hall for some years. It was therefore agreed to change the name to The Grayshott Village Hall. A request was sent to the Parish Council and a Resolution passed by the Council to amend the name. Such request being accepted, a Resolution was passed to this effect at a Parish Council Meeting on 12th January 1937.
It was decided in December 1939 to close the Library and the Committee placed on record its appreciation of the service rendered by Mrs Marshall Bulley, to the village of Grayshott during the many years she so unselfishly and efficiently, carried on the Library. The Minutes also recorded that the Committee was “fully aware that her decision to close the library was entirely due to the fact that, during the last year or two, in the changing world, the library was used by very few of those for whose use it was founded”. In May 1954, the Hampshire County Library confirmed that they would open a library in the hall, at a rental of £13 per annum, for one hour per week. This arrangement appears to have continued for a number of years until notice was given by the County in 1965 confirming that a mobile library would take over the library duties for the village. In 1972, the situation of raising additional funds for the operation of the Hall was helped by the letting, on an initial 7 year lease at £400 per annum, of the Small Hall to the Hampshire County Library, which also resulted in the added benefit to the village of a permanent library being established.
In 1943, the Committee agreed that the Small Hall should be made available, during the winter months, to the Home Guard for Drill practice. The Small Hall was also made available to members of H.M. Forces as a Reading and Writing room.
Following the second world war, somewhere around 1946/7, a tenancy was taken by the Education Authorities for the Technical Room to be used as an overflow for pupils from Grayshott school. This was intended to be a temporary arrangement but continued for many years. It was not until May 1962 that the Management Committee took the decision to serve notice of termination of the arrangement to the Authority. Originally it was intended for the school to vacate at the end of summer term of that year, the reasons being given that the cloakrooms were in a shocking state, urgent needs of floor repair and danger to the children resulting from the building work for the new Firestation, the adjacent car parking area being the only play area for the children. In the event, the school vacated the premises in May 1963.
In October 1963, St Luke’s Parochial Church Council, seeking a suitable venue for a Church Room, took an annual tenancy of the Technical Room at the rate of £70 per annum. They continued the tenancy until January 1968 after which, the Management Committee changed the name of the room to the Common Room.
A reference in the Minutes of the Management Committee of December 1951 refers to old papers recently found in the attic. These included “old music scores” which were sent to Churchers College, Petersfield and it was agreed that the other papers could be sent for salvage. Reference was also made to pictures donated by Mrs Ashley-Clark which, it was confirmed were in safe custody. There is no description as to what the pictures were.
For a number of years, the Management Committee was always hard put to make ends meet, mainly due to the high maintenance costs of the property although the financial problems were alleviated to some degree by the receipt of grants. The problems were also helped by an increase in income from improved lettings, which had been achieved by the formation of a Social Committee. In January 1957, it had been reported that, based on the prior three to four years, an additional £200-£250 was required per annum to meet ongoing costs. A meeting was therefore held between the Management and Social committees and representatives of local organisations. Consideration was given to leasing the Small Hall to the Fire Service on a full repairing lease for five years at £250 p.a. However, by this time the Hampshire Fire Service were indicating that they were not
prepared to continue the Grayshott Fire Service without new premises and equipment. This eventually resulted in the Parish Council entering into negotiations with the Service for the sale of land as noted above. The conveyance of this land was completed in 1960, the sale proceeds being invested for the benefit of the Hall.
In December 1962, an application was made for the Village Hall to be registered as a Charity under the Charities Act of 1962 and the registration was formalised in April 1963.
In October 1967, the Management Committee was restructured in order to meet the statutory requirements of the Department of Education and the County Council which stated that a minimum of six representatives from local organisations which used the hall should serve on the committee. Meeting these requirements enabled the Committee to obtain grants to install central heating.
On the 30th September 1971, the Men’s Club was formally wound up and what is now the Small Hall and the Reading Room, now part of the kitchens, were vacated. It was estimated that this would result in a minimum loss of £150 pa. It was reported in October 1972 that alterations to the Men’s Club and Reading rooms were complete and that the present Small Hall and the new kitchens were fully operational.
In July 1980, Mrs Nancy Littlejohn and Mr F. Len H. Harris both retired from the Committee. Mr Harris had served on the committee for some forty-three years, having joined in 1937, ten of which were as Chairman. Mrs Littlejohn had served for twenty-five years, twenty-two as Chairman. A farewell party was held to mark the occasion, attended by members of the Management Committee, Parish Councillors and representatives of local organisations. A cheque and an inscribed tray depicting village activities associated with the village hall, were presented to each in recognition of their long service. The Parish Council office is now named the Nancy Littlejohn Room.
In early 2000, a Friends of Grayshott Village Hall scheme was established to raise money for the specific purpose of keeping the Hall in good decorative order. This on-going scheme has proved to be a success and is now made up of both individual and corporate members.
On 23rd May 2002, a commemorative plaque on the front of the Hall was unveiled by Maj. Jeremy Whitaker to mark the centenary of the opening of the Village Hall in 1902.
In September an “Evening of Entertainment” to celebrate the centenary was held, at which the Grayshott Stagers and the Grayshott School provided entertainment.
In April 2002, the Grayshott Village Archive was formed to mark the centenary of both the Village Hall and the Parish Council
Much hard and unselfish work by the various Management Committees, which have served over so many years, has gone into the running of the Village Hall to ensure it is fully maintained, meets current legislative requirements and achieves high utilisation. Today, the Grayshott Village Hall, under the watchful eye of the current Management Committee, continues to operate as a centre for many village activities, as was first envisaged at the beginning of the last century and explained by Mr Marshall Bulley to those who attended the public meeting on that hot summers day of 18th July 1900.
Grayshott Village Archive
Village Hall Management Committee
Grayshott Parish Council
Tim Winter- photographs
Grayshott Village Hall website: www.grayshottvillagehall.co.uk
During the early years, meetings and social gatherings took place in the . . . . . . . . . . .