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Historical Account

Extract From – Topographical and Historical Description of the County of Stafford

containing an account of it’s Towns, Cathedral, Castles, Antiquities, Churches, Monuments, Public Edifices, and Picturesque Scenery. – Rev.  Mr. Nightingale.

The remains of Healy or Heyley Castle, in this neighbourhood, are situated on a lofty rock about a mile to the South east (of Betley). Camden tell us that the lands hereabout were given by Harvey Lord Stafford, to Henry de Aldithlege or Awdlege, already mentioned, in the reign of king John. This Henry appears to have been the founder of the castle. He was descended from William de Bettelegh or, Betley, who besides Audley* left him considerable property in this vicinity. The Stanleys earls of Derby were the descendants of this family, who were created Barons of Audley. Both the estate and title, however, afterwards went to the Touchets, and that family still continues to enjoy them.

*Audley, a small village about two miles to the north, is distinguished, as having given name, as well as title, to the noble family of Audley. This manor according to Camden was conferred upon Henry de Aldethlege or Awdllegc, by Theobald Verdun. Plot informs us, that traces of a very old castle could be discovered here in his time, which had either been built by the Betteleghs, whom Nicholas maintains to have been in possession of it before the Audleys or the Verduns, from whom he says they received it. All vestiges of this edifice are now lost.

Madeley is a parish about five miles from Newcastle. It contains about one hundred and sixty houses, and nearly one thousand inhabitants. In the church there are several monuments of the ancestors of the earl of Wilton. It consists of a nave, side-aisles, transept, and a chancel, which is at the east end of the nave, to the north-wall of which latter is affixed a chapel of nearly the same size and plan as the transepts. It has also a south porch and a square embattled tower, at the west end of the nave in which is a ring of six bells; the sixth having been lately bequeathed by Mr. Samuel Stretch. In the interior the different parts are separated from each other by pointed arches, supported on plain pillars. On the north side of the chancel arch are the reading desk and pulpit, the latter of which is an ancient oak, moderately carved with small Saxon arches. The crimson velvet cloth and cushion were the gift of the Rev. Thomas Barlow and is mentioned on one of the tables of benefactions. Above the same arch, in the nave, is printed. the pater noster, the creed, and the commandments on two tables. Between these tables are the royal arms, painted in the year 1804. A small brass chandelier of twelve lights is suspended from the middle of the ceiling of the nave, and is inscribed: – “BEQUEATHED BY SAMUEL STRETCH, OF MADELEY.” At the west end of the nave there is a small organ. The following is an account of the benefactions to the poor, &c. On a table over the second pillar, from the pulpit on the northside of the nave:

“The Rev. Thomas Barlow, vicar in his life time, gave a velvet pulpit-cloth, cushion, communion cloth, silver tankard; and salvars.” On another table, opposite the above:
” An Account of ye Benefactors to the poor of this parish.

Mr. Thomas Bowyer left £20 0 0
Ralph Egerton of Betley, Esq. gave. £40 0 0
Mr. James Shaw, £10 0 0
Mr. William Clayton £10 0 0
Mr. John Wesson £20 0 0
Mrs. Rose Thompson left to be dealt in } cloth on St. Thomas’s Day } £50 0 0
Mrs. Jane Thompson £10 0 0
Mr. John Lightfoot £5 0 0
Mrs. Anne Giles £50 0 0
Mr. Weston Bayley left twenty pounds } which is paid into the parish’s hands } £20 0 0
Left by an unknown hand £7 0 0
Ralph Horton Gent. in his life time gave £200 0 0

In the chancel, against the south wall, on a large board: ” A Catalogue of the Benefactions to the Church, School, and Poor of ye Parish of Madely, given by Sir John Offley Knt. and his heirs.

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“Imp. The said Sir John Offley, gave by his will ten pounds, to be paid forthwith to so many of ye poor of ys. parish as his Executors shall think fit.
” Item. bebequeath’d to so many poor Men of Madely and Muckleston, as be should be years old at the time of his decease, So many cloth gowns, to attend his Corpse to Church.
” Item. He gave a hundred and twenty pounds, or whatsoever more would erect and build two decent and convenient school-houses, in such manner as his will directs.
” Item. He directed threescore pound a year, to be payable by his heirs out of the lands of Upper and Neather Thornhall, for finding a schoolmaster, usher, and school mistress for the said schools.
“Item. He directed ten alms-houses to be built, and endowed the same with forty-five pound a year, payable out of his lands and, tenements in the City of London; likewise in Hackney, Stepney and elsewhere in the county of Middlesex, for ye clothing and maintenance of ten poor men or women of this parish.
“Item. He gave a hundred pound to buy a pulpit cloth, cushion, and communion carpet ; also two silver flaggons and a silver cup.
“Item. He gave by his said will, twenty pound a year for ever, for preaching a weekly Sermon in the Parish Church of Madeley.
” The Honrd. Mary Offley, widow, late wife of John Offley Esqr. left to ye township of Madeley, the use of a hundred pound, to be dealt in bread.
“John Crewe, of Crewe in ye county of Chester, esq. great grandson of the said Sir John Offley, gave in his life time a hundred and four pounds, thirteen shillings, towards raising the bounty for this vicarage.”

MONUMENTAL INSCRIPTIONS.

In the North Transept is an ancient marble altar tomb, the sides and ends of which are adorned with 17 sculptural effigies, male and female; some of which have wings, representing angels; but they are all much disfigured by the destroying hand of time. Upon the top are cut the outlines of a male and female figure, and round the border thereof is inscribed:

“Hic jacent corpora randoff egerto’ armigeri, et isabell ur : sue, qui quidem randolfus obiit septimo die maijanno d’m mo’ CCCCCXXII ; et predicta isabella, obiit, …. die, anno d’m mo’, CCCCC…. quor’ aiab’ p’ pi’ciet’d’.Ame.”

Near to this tomb is an old oaken. chest, in good preservation with the initials and date: viz. ,

RS. W.S.

W.

1695.

In the south transept, on a brass plate on the floor, is inscribed: “Pray for the soulles of John Egerton, Esqyer and Elyln his Wyf, the whiche John decessed the first day of Apryll in the yere of our Lord God ……on whose soules Th’u have mercy. Amen”

Both in the north and south transepts are several marble slabs on the floor, having inscriptions round their borders in the old letter; but owing to the fractured state of several, and the many obliteration’s, they are illegible. Among those on the south side, we could discern Radulphus Egerton and a Margaret.

On the east side of the south transept, are two mural marble monuments. On the first is inscribed:

” In a just regard to the many virtues

of a much honour’d mother, and a

beloved brother

Sir Holland Egerton, bart

appointed this monument to be

erected

to the memory of Elizabeth, first

Wife of Sir John Egerton, bart, and

John, her second son

(he died in the17th year of his Age, 1704)

She was daughter, and at last sole heir

of William Holland of Denton,

Heaton, &c. in the county of Lancaster:

descended from that ancient stern,

whence several noble familys; often

ally’d to the Crown, and other

memorable persons, have issued.

She died 1701.”

On the second, which is south of the preceding :

” To the memory of

Sir Holland Egerton of Wrine-hill, Farthingoe, Heaton &c.

bart.

“Descended (by a long succession of ancestors, distinguished with various titles, honours, and great alliances) from the ancient Barons of Malpas: by many good qualities and virtues of his own, he did honour to so illustrious a pedigree.
“Rever’d On the Bench, for an awful gravity, and a calm and steady conduct, founded on a conscious integrity and clear knowledge.
“Beloved and valued in private life, for humanity, sincerity; and a fine understanding, improv’d with all kinds of science. He married Eleanor, daughter of Sir Roger Cave, of the county of Leicester, bart. by whom he was blest with an ample fortune, a numerous issue, and an uncommon goodness of temper.
“Three of his sons, who died before him, John in the eleventh, Holland in the first, and Cave in the second year of his age (out of a paternal fondness) he appointed to be remember’d on his own monument.
He dyed in the year of his Age 44, and of Christ 1730, and was deposited in the adjacent vault, leaving the family estate and dignity enjoy’d only about six months, to his son Edward.”
Above this inscription on the tablet is a medallion, whereupon is the bust of Sir Holland Egerton, and below the inscription, are his arms; noting of which remains distinct, except three pheans’ heads Azure.
In the nave, near the reading desk on the floor, is a slab, inscribed to the memory of the Rev. Thomas Barlow, vicar, who died January 19, 1779, and of his wife Mary, who died May 12th, 1761.
On the south wall of the chancel, near to the table of benefactions above described, on a marble tablet is inscribed:

“This marble,

erected’ by the hand of Friendship,

protects the remains

of Mrs. Martha Bayley,

Widow of John Bayley, Esq. of the Parks;

who, with the faith and piety of a true

Christian,

exchanged this mortal state

on the 13th day of May 1789,

in the 82d year of her Age.

“Her good sense and benevolent mind, endeared her amiable character to all who were connected with her ; whilst her example nourished in her only daughter, the late wife of Mr. Humphry Felton of Drayton, an emulation to imitate so excellent a parent.
“The fondest tribute, which affection pays the dead, is only allotted a transient date ; but the actions of the good and the virtuous have elsewhere a permanent record, which neither the darkness of the grave Can conceal, nor the ravages of ages moulder away.”
Immediately below the above, on a brass-plate fixed in the wall :

“Carolas Shaw, M.A.

e Coll. SS Trin. Cant.

Ecclesiae hujus vicarius, Anglicanae Pastor fidelis:

vir

humanitatis eximiae, sinceritatis integrae,

charitatis vere Christianae

obijt Oct. 28 anno domini 1702,

aetatis 42″

By the side of the west wall of the chapel, which is attached to the north side of the chancel, is a marble monument which consists of a pedestal about two yards high, one broad, one thick. Above the pedestal is a large urn, which rests upon a plinth or square piece of marble, supported by the pedestal : on three sides of this plinth are sculptur,d three shields, which are too much effaced to blazon. The height, from the base of the pedestal to the top of the urn, may be about four yards; but, In stating these dimensions, we write merely from conjecture, not now having the means of ascertaining the dimensions with accuracy. On the front, or die of the pedestal is inscribed:

” Johanni Crewe Offley,

Johannis Offley de Madeley

in comit Stafford, Armigeri,

e Mari (cuipater Thomas Broughton

Broughton in eode comit. armiger)

filio et haeredi;

trium liberorum superstitum

Johannis, et Crewe, prolis musculae,

et filiolae Mariae

patri:

Septembris die VI.

anno D’ni MDCLXXXVIII.

aetatis XXXVIII denato ;

Annn nxor unica

(Johannis Crewe de Crewe

in com. pal. Cestr. armigeri,

et Carewe filiae Arthuri Gorge

de Chelsea in com Midd.’ eq. Aurati

filia,

e duabus relictis natu major)

hoc monumentum posuit.”

Over the north window of this same chapel, on a beam, is carved 1643; which is, probably, the date of the repair of the church. This church stands by the side of a public road in the village; and to the west, on the opposite side of the road, is a school, which is a plain old building, with two apartments, one for the boys, and the other for the girls; it has also a small area enclosed before it. This school we believe, is the same that was founded and endowed as stated above in the benefactions.


All Saints Church Study

Much of the church is later medieval, the west tower (embraced by the aisles), the south aisle, and the transepts being 15th century, and the north chapel (now the vestry) being of the 16th century. However, the four bay north arcade with pointed arches is Latest Norman of c1190, the north aisle itself is 14th century, and the
chancel was entirely rebuilt in 1872 by Charles Lynam. The chapel has a contemporary screen, the pulpit is Jacobean, the gallery in the tower is of 1635, and there is an incised slab to Randolph Egerton, d1522, and his wife, brasses to John Egerton, d1518, and his wife, and an architectural tablet to Sir Holland Egerton,d1730.