Promoting the gospel amongst the poor

An image form Fleuron, ' Database of Eighteenth-Century Printers' Ornaments' 1750
Public domain

At a meeting convened in Ringwood to cover the entire Deanery of Fordingbridge, which included Milford,  a committee was formed on 11th May 1814 to encourage Christian worship amongst the poorer sections of society. The principal resolution at the meeting was worded:

That in order to supply the lower ranks of the Community within the Deanery of Fordingbridge, with Bibles, Common Prayer Books, and small Religious Tracts; a District Committee be formed in aid of the Society for Promoting Christian Knowledge, in union with the Winchester Diocesan Committee, under the Patronage of his Royal Highness the Duke of York, and under the sanction the Lord Bishop of the Diocese.

Some ninety people had agreed to subscribe to this worthy cause by the time that it was reported in the Hampshire Chronicle on Monday 30th May 1814. The subscribers included several residents of Milford and the surrounding area, including:

Nathaniel Atcheson, and Mrs. Atcheson who paid poor rates on Saltgrass, Keyhaven
Robert Budden – solicitor who acted as executor for Admiral Cpornwallis
Rev James Harrington Evans (incorrectly reported as Rev John Evans)
Richard Jennins
Rev. Ellis Jones of Lymington who had previously been a curate at Hordle
The Lord Bishop of Lincoln who purchased Rookcliffe in 1825
Mrs Susannah Peyton of Priestlands, the widow of Rear Admiral John Peyton
William Reynolds of Milford House
Rev. Sumner Smith of Lyndhurst – a former curate at Milford who left in 1809 on the   appointment of Rev Evans as vicar
Captain (later Admiral) T E Symonds of Boldre
W. E.Tomline, Esq. M.P for Christchurch and son of the Bishop of Lincoln (above)
Mrs M A T Whitby of Newlands

Members of the clergy throughout the Deanery were well represented, together with others whose names are familiar to members of this Society:

Sir Harry Burrard Neale (Walhampton)
Charles St Barbe (Lymington)
Charles St Barbe Jun. (Lymington)
Rev Thomas Rivett of Everton
Right Hon. George Rose, Secretary to the Navy, who had homes at Lyndhurst and Mudeford

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