Harston vicars in the 18th century

John Roadley

Memorial to Luke Trevigar in All Saints church, Hurstmonceux

Most vicars of Harston in the 18th century follow a similar pattern. All are educated at Cambridge colleges; most hold the Harston post early in their careers, often before finishing at college; most stay for only a few years; none are buried in Harston. Below are a few details of the Harston vicars from 1735 – 1796.

Luke Trevigar  1735 – 1738

Luke Trevigar was born at Sunbury, Middlesex, in 1705. He was educated at Charterhouse school in London and was admitted to Clare college on 4 April 1723 where he obtained a BA in 1726/7 and an MA in 1730.

He was vicar of Sawston from 1731 – 35 and became vicar of Harston on 30 September 1735 until 18 February 1738 when he moved to Sussex. He was Canon of Chichester when he died 18 April 1772.
A wall mounted monument in All Saints church, Hurstmonceux records “with what zeal, learning and eloquence this truly Christian pastor interpreted and fulfilled his divine Master’s will. Let these hallowed walls proclaim”.

Charles Plumtre  1738 – 1745

Charles Plumtre was born in Nottingham on 16July 1712. He was admitted to Clare college on 1 April 1730 (the year his predecessor at Harston, Luke Trevigar, left the college). He gained his BA in 1733/4 and his MA in 1737 but from Queens college

He was appointed vicar of Harston on 18 February 1737 until 4 November 1745 when he became rector at Wimpole. The marriage register of Queens College records that on 26 Oct 1743 he was the officiating minister at the marriage of Thomas Simons and Esther Webb, both of Harston (before the Marriage Act of 1753, it was legal to be married in a college chapel). When he died suddenly on 13 September 1779, he was Archdeacon of Ely, rector of St Mary Woolnoth, London and of Orpington, Kent. He is buried at St Mary’s, Nottingham

Joseph Thorp  1745 – 1775

Joseph Thorp was born in Ashton-Under-Lyne, Lancashire. He entered St Catharine’s college on 2 June 1737 and gained his BA in 1740/1 and his MA in 1744

He was appointed vicar of Harston on 4 November 1745 where he remained, unmarried, until his death on 19 March 1775

Nicholas Rigby Baldwin 1775 – 1783

Nicholas Baldwin was born in 1747 in Lancashire, the son of a vicar. He entered Peterhouse college on 27 March 1764. He gained his BA in 1768 and his MA in 1771.
He became vicar of Harston on 16 May 1775 until 12 December 1783. After this he spent most of his time in Lancashire where he died on 22 December 1824.

Richard Ormerod  1783 – 1788

Richard Ormerod was born on 28 June 1751 at Smallshaw in Lancashire

He entered St John’s college in December 1779 but moved to Christ’s college in October 1780 where he gained his BA in 1784 and MA in 1787 when  he also became College Reader in Hebrew. He was appointed vicar of Harston on 23 December 1783 until  14/02/1788 when he became vicar of Kelvedon in Essex.

From 1795 until his death on 24 May 1816 he was vicar of St Mary Abbots, Kensington, given ‘as a reward for his piety and worth’ and one of the most fashionable and prestigious livings in the country.
He was said to have been extremely beloved in Kensington where at his funeral ‘every shop in the parish was shut and every parishioner whose means would allow it appeared in mourning’.

In his will Richard directed that he should be buried ‘with the smallest expense consistent with decency’.

John Sparhauke  1788 – 1795

John Sparhauke was born on 2 June 1756 in Radwell,  Hertfordshire, the son of a vicar. He entered St John’s college on 24 Dec 1773 and gained his BA in 1778 and MA in 1781.

He was vicar of Great Hormead from 1795-7, vicar of Harston from 14/02/1788 until 14/04/1795 when he became rector of Hinxworth. He died in June 1797.

William Leworthy   1796 – 1837

Is written about separately

This page was added on 28/07/2018.

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