Rectors of PlumtreeHome / Plumtree Church / Rectors of Plumtree

This timeline lists the Rectors of Plumtree in order of their appointment, from the first records in 1251. Click on the numbered link to see a pop-up containing more information about the Rector or their Patron.

1251 - 1309

Roger de Sylly, cleric

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1309 - Unknown

William FitzWilliam, cleric

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Unknown - 1356

Edward FitzWilliam, cleric

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1356 - 1363

John de Walton, cleric

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1363 - 1373

John de Armpelford, cleric

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1373 - 1378

Edmund de Bingham, presbyter

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1378 - Unknown

Lambert de Trikyngham

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Unknown - 1416

John de Roldestan, presbyter

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1416 - 1460

John Wheatley, cleric

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1460 - 1507

William Cupran, cleric

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1507 - 1534

Thomas Wigfall

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1534 - 1552

Thomas Partington (or Portyngton), B.A.

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1552 - 1608

John Olyff, cleric (or Johannes Olif)

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1608 - 1614

John Aston, cleric

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1614 - 1646

Francis Chamberlyn (or Chamberlaine), M.A.

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1647 - 1683

Vere Harcourt

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1683 - 1714

John Gee

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1714 - 1718

James Greenhalgh

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1718 - 1760

Charles Willats B.A.

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1760 - 1798

John Carne M.A.

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1798 - 1813

James Williamson B.D.

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1813 - 1816

Thomas Beaumont

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1816 - 1864

John Burnside B.A.

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1865 - 1883

William Burnside M.A.

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1883 - 1906

Samuel Benjamin Browne, B.A.

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1907 - 1912

Nigel Madan, M.A., Canon of Southwell

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1912 - 1915

Charles Doyne Powell, M.A.

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1915 - 1926

David FitzHerbert Wright, M.A.

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1926 - 1936

Harold Robinson, M.A.

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1937 - 1957

Edgar Banting

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1957 - 1968

Arnold Doxey

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1968 - 1979

Norman Alfred Chadwick

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1979 - 1985

Stephen John Oliver, A.K.C.

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1985 - 1995

John James Stafford

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1995 - 2001

Mary Gee 

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2002 - 2009

Malcolm Hugh Wainwright, M.A.

Click to read more...[36]

2010 - 2022

Trevor Harwood Kirkman M.A. 

Click to read more...[37]

Various sources for our research include:

  • The Clergy Database for 1540 to 1835
  • Newspaper articles made available via the British Newspaper Archive. ©The British Library Board. All rights reserved. Where we have directly quoted a newspaper article we have included the title and date.
  •, the UK’s favourite family history website
  • A Little History of the English Country Church, by Roy Strong, has provided some background to the history of the Church of England.

All images are copyright Les & Fiona Carruthers.

[1] Roger de Sylly

Instituted: 26 March 1251

Patron: Sir Thomas FitzWilliam, Knight

[2] William FitzWilliam

Instituted: 16 May 1309

Patron: William FitzWilliam

[3] Edward FitzWilliam

Instituted: Unknown

Patron: Unknown

Died: 1356

[4] John de Walton

Instituted: 25 October 1356

Patron: Sir John FitzWilliam, Knight

Resigned: 1363

[5] John de Armpelford

Instituted: 8 February 1363

Patron: Sir John FitzWilliam, Knight

Died: 1373

[6] Edmund de Bingham

Instituted: 20 January 1373

Patron: Sir JohnFitzWilliam, Knight

Resigned: 1378


"Presbyter" was an early word for a minister of a Christian church. In predominant Protestant usage, presbyter does not refer to a member of a distinctive priesthood called priests, but rather to a minister, pastor, or elder.

[7] Lambert de Trikyngham

Instituted: 25 May 1378

Patron: Sir John FitzWilliam, Knight

[8] John de Roldestan

Instituted: Unknown date

Patron: Sir John FitzWilliam, Knight

[9] John Wheatley

Instituted: 8th April 1416

Patron: Sir John FitzWilliam, Knight

Resigned: 1460

[10] William Cupran

Instituted: 14 June 1460

Patron: William FitzWilliam, Esq

Died: 1507


By his will, dated 10 May 1507, he "desires to be buried in the chancel". It's not known if this happened as the church burial registers don't start until 1558.

[11] Thomas Wigfall

Instituted: 7 February 1507

Patron: The guardians of William FitzWilliam

Died: 16 June 1534


Dr Robert Thoroton (who published the first history of Nottinghamshire in 1677) described the following inscription on an alabaster slab in the chancel floor:

"Hic jacet Dominus Thomas Wigfall, quondam &c . . obit 16 Junii 1534. Cujus animae, &c."

There is no sign of this slab today.


Meanwhile in the Church of England: In 1527 Henry VIII asked Pope Clement VII for an annulment of his marriage to Katherine of Aragon; the Pope refused. The church in England recognised Henry VIII as supreme head of the Church of England on 11 February 1531.

In 1533 the Act in Restraint of Appeals removed the right of the English clergy and laity to appeal to Rome on matters of matrimony, tithes and oblations. It also gave authority over such matters to the Archbishops of Canterbury and York.

Thomas Cranmer, the new Archbishop of Canterbury, issued Henry's annulment; Henry married Anne Boleyn. Pope Clement VII excommunicated Henry VIII.

[12] Thomas Partington (or Portyngton)

Instituted: 7 August 1534

Patron: The assigns of William FitzWilliam

Died: 23 May 1552

Prior to being the Rector of Plumtree, Thomas Portyngton was rector of Speldhurst church in Kent from 1532 to 1534.


Meanwhile in the Church of England: in 1534 the Act of Submission of the Clergy removed the right of all appeals to Rome, effectively ending the Pope's influence on teh church in England.

1536 - The First Act of Supremacy confirmed Henry as the Supreme Head of the Church of England. Also in this year Edward VI was born and Reformation takes hold with dissolution of the monasteries.

In 1538 shrines were demolished, the use of the rosary condemned, and ringing of angelus bell forbidden. It became a requirement to keep parish registers of weddings, christenings and burials.

Henry VIII died in 1547 and 9-year-old Edward VI acceded to the throne. The Reformation continued as images, the use of votive candles and holy water are banned.

In 1548 the licence to preach was introduced and in 1549 the first Book of Common Prayer was published (revised in 1552).

[13] John Olyff (or Johannes Olif)

Instituted: 28 May 1552

Patron: Sir William Copley, Knight

Died: August 1608


Buried in Plumtree on 25 August 1608

Revd Olyff is shown in burial register as "Olliffe". There is the additional text: "Parson of Plumptree - Who (as is credibly reported) continued parson for three score and five years".

In his Will dated 25 July 1608 (probate 1 Oct. 1608), he bequeathed 40 pounds towards repairing Plumtree Church.


Meanwhile in the Church of England: 1553 Edward VI died and was replaced by his half-sister Mary I, a Roman Catholic, who repealed all the reforms of Henry VIII and re-established communion with Rome.

However in 1558, Mary I died and was replaced by her half-sister, the protestant, Elizabeth I. In 1559 parliament recognised Elizabeth as the Church's supreme governor, with a new Act of Supremacy that also repealed the remaining anti-Protestant legislation.

A new version of the Book of Common Prayer appeared in the same year and Elizabeth presided over the "Elizabethan Settlement", an attempt to satisfy the Puritan and Catholic forces in England within a single national Church.

Elizabeth was excommunicated on 25 February 1570 by Pope Pius V, finally breaking communion between Rome and the Anglican Church.

1603 saw the accession of James VI of Scotland as James I - he commissioned a unified and new translation of the Bible "free of Calvinist and Popish influence". Begun in 1604 and completed in 1611 it became the Authorised Version in the Church of England and later other Anglican churches throughout the communion until the mid-20th century (also called King James's Bible).

[14] John Aston

Instituted: 22 September 1608

Patron: Godfrey Copley, Esquire

Died: November 1614


John Aston was buried on 11 November 1614. His Will, dated 2 September 1614, expressed his wish to be buried in the chancel. There is no stone marking the burial spot. The probate date of the Will is 19 January 1614 (note this is the Julian calendar where March 25 was the first day of the new year).

From the Plumtree church baptism register we see that, John had a daughter Susanna, who was baptised on 28 June 1612. He also had a son, John, who was baptised on 27 December 1614 after his father's death.

[15] Francis Chamberlyn (or Chamberlaine)

Instituted: 8 December 1614 and 20 June 1616 (not sure why he was instituted twice)

Patron: The assigns of Godfrey Copley, Esquire

Died: August 1646


Revd Chamberlyn had thirteen children baptised at Plumtree:

Francis (bap Dec 1618)
John (bap Jul 1620)
William (bap Dec 1621; died Dec 1621)
William (bap Dec 1624)
Thomas (bap Mar 1625)
Elizabeth (bap Mar 1626)
Ann(e) (bap Apr 1627; died Jun 1628)
Frances (bap Sep 1628)
Samuell (bap Mar 1630)
George (bap Jan 1631; died Aug 1642)
Mary (bap Jun 1635)
Hanna (bap Jun 1637)
Tabitha (bap Sep 1638)

He was buried in St Mary's on August 21st 1646.

[16] Vere Harcourt

Instituted: 6 December 1647

Patron: King Charles II

Died: 4 July 1683


One of seven children, Vere was the third son of Robert Harcourt (the eldest son of Sir Walter Harcourt, who was knighted at Rouen in 1591). Robert Harcourt was an adventurer with Sir Walter Raleigh. Vere's mother was Robert's second wife Frances, daughter of Geoffrey Vere, Esquire, youngest son of John, Earl of Oxford. 

Revd Harcourt studied at Emmanuel College, Cambridge where he graduated with a B.A. in 1626-7, M.A. in 1630 and D.D. in 1661. He married Lucy Thornton, daughter of Roger Thornton of Snailwell in Cambridgeshire on 6th April 1643. They had six children baptised at Plumtree:

Lucy (bap Apr 1648)
Vere (bap Apr 1650)
Simon (bap Jul 1653)
Ann (bap Nov 1655)
Benjamin (bap Oct 1659)
Clifton (bap May 1664)

An unnamed daughter was buried on 25 June 1652

Revd Harcourt was the puritan minister appointed to St Mary's Church, Plumtree in 1647 and was made Rector in 1660. In the same year he was appointed Archdeacon of Nottingham.

Vere's wife, Lucy, died on 9 October 1682. Revd Harcourt died on 4 July 1683 and was buried in St Mary's; his memorial on the south sanctuary wall reads: 

"Near this place was interred the body of the Reverend and Right worth. Vere Harcourt D.D. Rector of this Parish and Archdeacon of Notts. Son to Robert Harcourt Esq. of Stanton Harcourt in the county of Oxon who departed this life July the 4th 1683 in the 77 yeare of his age having not long before much lamented the losse of his deare wife Lucy daughter to Roger Thornton of Snalewell in the county of Cambridge Knight her likewise interred having left this world on the 9 day of October 1682 in the 62 year of her age."


Meanwhile in the Church of England: 1647 and 1660 - Parliament abolished all feasts and festivals of the Church to rid England of outward signs of Popishness. This included Christmas. The Book of Common Prayer was replaced by the Directory of Public Worship. Despite this, about one quarter of English clergy refused to conform.

In 1660 the throne was restored and Charles II was crowned king. Anglicanism too was restored in a form similar to the Elizabethan version. The Book of Common Prayer was revised again and the 1662 version became the unifying text of the Church.

[17] John Gee

Instituted: 3 December 1683

Patron: John Templer, of Chesthunt, Hertfordshire

john gee's memorialDied: 26 December 1713


He was admitted to prebend of Eaton at Southwell, 24 August 1704.

Revd Gee had five children baptised at Plumtree:

Mary (bap Jul 1684; died Aug 1684)
Michael (bap Jul 1685)
Ann (bap Sep 1688)
Dorothy (bap Jan 1689; died Nov 1690)
Everilde Katharine Dorothy (bap Sep 1691)

A son John was also buried on 5 November 1690)

Revd Gee died on 26 December 1713 Age 68 and was buried in St Mary's on 29 December 1713.

His memorial in the chancel (shown right) reads: "Hic jacet Corpus Revndi Viri Johannes Gee, AM huiusce Ecclesiae nuper Rectoris et Southwellensis Prebendari Qui obijt 26 Die Decmbri AD 1713 et Aetatis Suae 68"

(Here lies the body of Reverend John Gee the recent Rector of this church and Prebendary of Southwell who died on the 26 day of December AD 1713)


Meanwhile in the Church of England: 1688 - James II was overthrown by William of Orange, and the new king moved quickly to ease religious tensions. Many of his supporters had been Nonconformist non-Anglicans.

24 May 1689 - Act of Toleration enacted; Nonconformists had freedom of worship. Those Protestants who dissented from the Church of England such as Baptists, Congregationalists and Quakers were allowed their own places of worship and their own teachers and preachers, subject to acceptance of certain oaths of allegiance. These privileges expressly did not apply to Catholics and Unitarians, and these were also excluded from political office.

[18] James Greenhalgh

Instituted: 9 June 1714

Patron: Lionel Copley, Esquire

Died: August 1718


Born 1652 in Knowsley, Lancashire

The son of John Greenhalgh (Rector of Bury, Lancashire) and (probably) Eleanore le Liepvre de la Mazure (aka Eleanore Messure)

Revd Greenhalgh was ordained as a deacon on 23 September 1676 and as a priest on 21 September 1678.

1693 – 1714: Rector of Hooton Roberts (near Rotherham, Yorkshire)
1714 – 1718: Rector of Plumtree

He died in August 1718 and was buried in Plumtree church on 27 August 1718


[19] Charles Willats

Instituted: 26 January 1718

Patron: Lionel Copley, Esquire

Died: 7 November 1760


Born about 1693 in Reading

Revd Willats studied at King's College, Cambridge and was an Assistant Master at Eton. He was ordained on 8 June 1718 (as deacon); 25 January 1718 (as priest)

Charles married Castiliana Copley, the daughter of Lionel Copley (his patron)  in Sprotbrough (Spotborough), Yorks on 25 July 1721. Castiliana was born on27 August 1700 in Sprotbrough, daughter of Lionel Copley and Mary Copley (née Wilson)

They had three children baptised at Plumtree:

Godfrey (baptised on 17 December 1724; died October 1740)
Charles (baptised on 2 April 1729; died February 1729 *)
Charles Copley (baptised on 10 February 1729)

* In the Julian calendar Feb 1729 is 10 months after April 1729; March 25 was the first day of 1730. The calendar changed to the current "Gregorian" calendar in 1751.

Castiliana died in March 1729 in Plumtree, aged about 29. She was buried in Plumtree church on 5 March 1729

Revd Willats died on 7 November 1760 aged 67 and was buried in St Mary's on 11 November 1760 (possibly under the tower)


[20] John Carne

Instituted: 4 December 1760

Patron: John Moxon, Esquire of Woodford, Essex

Memorial to Francis SymesDied: 1 October 1798


Born in 1732 at Marcham, Oxfordshire, England (formerly Berkshire), the son of John Carne and Elizabeth Carne (née Loder).

Revd Carne studied at Jesus and All Souls' colleges, Oxford. At some point he was made a Prebendary of Llandaff (a Prebendary is a canon of a cathedral or collegiate church whose income originally came from a prebend).

John married Eleanor Carne (his first cousin, daughter of Richard Carne) in St Fagan’s church, Glamorgan, Wales on 12 June 1763. Eleanor was baptised on 24 February 1737 in King Stanley, Gloucestershire, daughter of Richard Carne and Mary Carne (née Coxe).

During Revd Carne’s time as Rector of Plumtree, Francis Simes was the Curate (licensed on 20 May 1765). Francis was instituted as Vicar of Ruddington on 10 May 1781. He died on the 17 December 1798 and was buried in St Mary's on 22 December 1798; there is a plaque to him on the wall of the North aisle (shown right).

Eleanor Carne died on 13 February 1791 in Bath, Somerset, aged 54. She was buried in Bath on 16 February 1791.

Rev Carne died at Nash, Gwent, Wales on 1 October 1798 aged 66 and was buried in Lysworney, Glamorgan, Wales on 4 October 1798.

His death was reported in the Gloucester Journal for Monday 8 October 1798:

On Monday last died, at Nash, near Cowbridge, after long and painful illness, supported with fortitude - and Christian resignation, the Rev. John Carne, one of His Majesty's Justices of the Peace for the county of Glamorgan, one of the Prebendaries of the Cathedral Church of Llandaff, and Rector of Plumtree, Nottinghamshire.


[21] James Williamson

Instituted: 18 December 1798

Patron: Sir Lionel Copley, Bart.

Memorial to Revd James WilliamsonDied: 3 January 1813


Born about 1840 in Moray Scotland, probably the son of Thomas Williamson and Margaret Williamson (née Russell).

Revd Williamson died on 3 January 1813 aged 72 and was buried in Plumtree church on 11 January 1813.

Revd Williamson studied at St Alban Hall and later became a fellow of Hertford College, Oxford. He was a learned scholar who published such diverse titles as "The Elements of Euclid, with Dissertations" and "An Argument for Natural and Revealed Religion".

He died on 3 January 1813 and was buried in St Mary's on 11 January 1813.

His plaque in the chancel (shown right) reads:

"Sacred to the Memory of the Reverend James Williamson BD late of Hertford College Oxford and Rector of Plumptree Nottinghamshire; who spent a long life in the pursuit of literature and science at home, and in other parts of Europe: embracing every opportunity to enrich his mind with various knowledge; but deriving his chief eminence from rare attainments in the higher branches of Mathematicks. He was born in the county of Murray in Scotland in the year of 1740 and died at the Rectory of Plumptree on the third of January 1813."

Volume 83 of "The Gentleman’s Magazine", elaborates that Revd Williamson's death occurred "...suddenly, after eating his breakfast".

Book clasp belonging to Revd WilliamsonThis metal item bearing Revd Williamson's name (right) is described as “A hinged clasp of some sort.  Found in a field West of Plumtree with a lot of other metal items, which appear to be left from a rubbish fire”. (P. B. Johnson, Churchwarden, March 1994).

[If you know what it is, please let us know!]


Meanwhile in the Church of England: In 1800 the Church of England was still the nation's most powerful religious and cultural institution. Its head was the king and its Bishops were landed aristocrats who sat in the House of Lords. Many of the clergy were from the aristocracy and gentry.

[22] Thomas Beaumont

Instituted: 10 April 1813

Patron: William Elliott Elliott, of Gedling House, Nottingham *

Resigned: 1816


Born in 1754, the son of Revd George Beaumont and Elizabeth Beaumont (née Green). Revd George was one time Rector of St Nicholas's church, Nottingham.

Thomas married Charlotte Huthwaite in St Peter’s, East Bridgford on 24 February 1777. Charlotte was born on 9 July 1755 in Nottingham, daughter of William Huthwaite and Mary Huthwaite (née Morley).

During Revd Beaumont's time as Rector, Revd John Burnside was Curate at Plumtree (licensed on 17 December 1815). It can be supposed that when Revd Burnside was ready to take on the position of Rector, it was suggested that Revd Beaumont should resign to make that possible.

In 1793 Thomas Beaumont built the house “East Bridgford Hill” on Kirk Hill in East Bridgford and lived there until his death.

Revd Beaumont was involved with the following churches:

East Bridgford (Perpetual Curate 1792 - 1835) **
Kegworth & Costock (Rector)
Branston, Leicestershire (Rector)
Glenfield, Leicestershire (Rector)
Plumtree (Rector)

In 1816 Plumtree Rectory was in need of repair, and Revd Thomas explained he wasn’t living there ‘…on account of the unfitness of the parsonage house for his residence therein and he being about to repair the same.’ However, he resigned later that year and it was John Burnside who began a major rebuilding of the rectory.

Charlotte died on 9 November 1830 in East Bridgford, aged 75. Revd Beaumont died on 25 August 1835 aged 81 at Bridgford Hill.

* In around 1806 William Elliott Elliott and his brother John Elliott bought the manor of Plumtree from Sir Lionel Copley. Thomas Beaumont’s sister, Frances Beaumont, married William Elliott Elliot in 1788. See The Burnsides for further information.

** In the 19th century, large numbers of new churches and parochial units were created in England and Wales. However these new churches did not have associated vicarages or rectories to generate income via tithes. The parish priests of these new churches could be perpetual curates deriving their income be from vicarial tithes, independent means or from a patron. As the name suggests, perpetual curates were appointed in perpetuity and once licensed by a bishop could not be removed.

[23] John Burnside

Instituted: 22 December 1816

Patron: William Elliott Elliott, of Gedling House, Nottingham. (William Elliott Elliott was John Burnside's Uncle).

Died: 23 December 1864


Born in October 1792, in Nottingham, the son of John Burnside and Ann Burnside (née Stanford).

Revd Burnside was ordained on 22 December 1816 at Bishopthorpe, Yorks. He was licensed as Curate of Plumtree on 17 December 1815; and became Rector the following year.

John married Henrietta Anne Julia Thompson in Kilham, Yorkshire on 30 March 1819. Henrietta was born on 26 December 1791 in York, daughter of William Thompson and Dorothy Thompson (née Jubb).

John and Henrietta had seven children, all baptised in Plumtree church:

Anne Adelaide (bap 1820; died 1904) - married Hon. Henry Lewis Noel in 1892
Julia Georgiana (bap 1821; died 1887) - married her cousin, John Elliott Burnside, in 1844
John Henry (bap 1822; died 1822)
William Henry (bap 1824; died 1824)
Katherine (bap 1825; died 1845)
Frances Emily (bap 1829; died 1875)
Mary (bap 1831; died 1888) - married Revd the Hon. William Byron in 1878

Memorial to Revd John BurnsideHenrietta died on 17 December 1849 in Plumtree, aged 53. She was buried in St Mary’s church Plumtree on 24 December 1849.

Revd Burnside died on 23 December 1864 aged 72 and was buried in St Mary’s church Plumtree on 30 December 1864. His death was reported in the Nottinghamshire Guardian dated 28 October 1864:

PLUMTREE. - We sincerely regret that a gloom of sorrow has been thrown over the village of Plumtree, and many households of sorrowing relatives, by the death of the respected Rector, the Revd. John Burnside, who expired on the 23rd inst., aged 72. The Reverend gentleman was presented to the Rectory of Plumtree in 1817 by the late W. Elliott, Esq., the Patron. Mr. Burnside had a large circle of family connections and acquaintance, and took a lively interest in all public matters which affected the general good of the community by whom his decease will be much lamented.

His plaque in the chancel reads:

In memory of John Burnside forty nine years Rector of this Parish died Dec. 23rd A.D. 1864 aged 72 and of Henrietta Anne Julia his wife died Dec. 17th A.D. 1849 aged 53. Also of Katherine their daughter died May 9th A.D. 1845 aged 19. Their remains are interred in the Chancel. This brass was erected in 1875 by their surviving children.


See The Burnsides for further information about the family.


Meanwhile in the Church of England: In 1829 the Catholic Emancipation Act marked the end of the Church of England's monopoly of public office and the universities.

1833 saw the start of the Oxford Movement - a movement of High Church members of the Church of England which eventually developed into Anglo-Catholicism.

[24] William Burnside

Instituted: 13 January 1865

Patron: William Stanford Burnside, Esquire (William Burnside's father)

Died: 7 April 1883


Born in December 1817, in Chesterfield, Derbyshire, the son of William Stanford Burnside and Mary Burnside (née Gillett).

Revd Burnside attended St John’s College, Cambridge and was ordained deacon in 1841 and became a priest in 1842.

William married Frances Houson in St Helen’s church Brant Broughton, Lincolnshire on 20 November 1856. Frances was born about 1830 in Brant Broughton, daughter of Henry Houson and Frances Ann Houson (née Chaplin).

Locally, Revd Burnside was involved with the following churches:

1847 – 1865: St Botolph, Broxholme, Lincolnshire (Rector)
1865 – 1883: St Mary, Plumtree (Rector)

Revd William Burnside was responsible for the major restoration of the church undertaken by the Victorian architects Bodley and Garner. The church was re-opened on Tuesday 30 March 1875 by the Bishop Suffragan of Nottingham.

Grave of Revd William BurnsideRevd Burnside died on 7 April 1883 in Fulbeck, Lincolnshire aged 65 and was buried in St Mary's churchyard on 12 April 1883 (in plot 80).

Frances died on 19 July 1914 in Hove, Sussex, aged 85. She was buried in St Mary's churchyard on 21 July 1914 (also in plot 80).

Revd Burnside’s death was reported in the Grantham Journal dated 14 April 1883:

FULBECK. Death of the Rev. W. Burnside. —The death is announced of the Rev. W. Burnside, rector of Plumtree, which took place on Saturday, at the residence of his brother-in-law, Capt. Houson, at Fulbeck, near Grantham. The deceased clergyman was ordained by the Bishop of Lincoln in 1841, and in 1847 he was presented to the living of Broxholme, Lincolnshire. In 1865 he became rector of Plumtree, Notts., being presented thereto by his brother, Mr. J. E. Burnside, of Gedling, and this living he retained to the time of his death. In 1876 he was chaplain to the High Sheriff, when Mr. J. E. Burnside held that office. Mr. Burnside never sought prominence either as a popular preacher or in any sphere of public life, but his kindness of heart and unobtrusive generosity were unbounded, and he will be greatly missed by his parishioners and throughout the county generally.

See The Burnsides for further information about the family.

[25] Samuel Benjamin Browne

Instituted: 19 October 1883

Patron: John Elliott Burnside, Esquire

Died: 17 September 1906


Born in 1832 in Cotgrave, Nottinghamshire, the son of John Henry Browne (Rector of Cotgrave) and Elizabeth Ward Browne (née Spilsbury).

He was ordained as deacon in 1855 and priest (Lincoln) 1856.

Samuel married his first wife Charlotte Hope in Tonbridge, Kent on 9 August 1864. Charlotte died on 3 September 1870 in Lowestoft, Suffolk. They had a son who died as an infant.

Samuel married his second wife Mary Armitage in St Jude’s church, South Kensington on 8 July 1875. Mary was born on 27 September 1850 in Osmaston, Derbyshire, daughter of Henry Leathley Armitage and Mary Armitage (née Coulman). They had two daughters and two sons.

Revd Browne was involved with the following churches:

1858: All Saints Cotgrave (Curate)
1865 – 1868: St Michael, Hope Mansell, Herefordshire (Rector)
1868 – 1883: St Mary, Framsden, Suffolk (Vicar)
1883 – 1906: St Mary, Plumtree (Rector)

Window dedicated to Revd S B BrowneRevd Browne died on 17 September 1906 aged 75 and was buried in Plumtree churchyard on 20 September 1906 in Plot 232.

From the Nottingham Evening Post (18 Sep 1906)

"We regret to record the death of the rector of Plumtree, the Rev. Samuel Benjamin Browne, B.A., which occurred the rectory, Plumtree yesterday. Mr. Browne's health had not been very good for some considerable time, and his condition was aggravated during the last few days by a chill, the end coming rather suddenly yesterday morning. The deceased gentleman was the youngest son of the late Archdeacon J. H. Browne, who was at one time Archdeacon of Ely, and subsequently became rector of Cotgrave, Notts., and his family was well-known in the district …

The commemorative stained-glass window at the west end of the north aisle was made by Burlison & Grylls and "gifted by Mrs. Browne in memory of her husband, the Revd Samuel Benjamin Browne". It was unveiled on 31 May 1908; the following report appeared in the Grantham Journal dated 6 June 1908:

PLUMTREE Memorial Window.—There was a large congregation at the Parish Church, Plumtree, on Sunday morning, when a stained-glass memorial window to  the late Rev. Samuel Benjamin Browne was unveiled by the Rev. J. P. Hales, Rector of Cotgrave. The window, which the gift of the widow, Mrs. Browne, is composed of four separate panel lights, each containing a figure representing respectively Moses, Melchisedech, David, and Elijah. It is in the east wall in the north corner, and is the work of Messrs. Burlison and Grylls, London, who were the makers another fine window in west end the building. The inscription reads —"To the glory of God and to the loving memory Samuel Benjamin Browne, 1835-1906." Mr. Browne, who was the Rector of the parish from 1833 to 1906, a period of twenty-three years, was highly respected in the district, and Mr. Hales, who was associated with him for many years at Plumtree, referred him in an eloquent sermon as man who spoke his mind, no matter whom was addressing. Rev. Canon Madan, the present Rector, read the dedicatory sentences.

Mary died on 23 November 1932 in Rutland House, Low Street, Collingham, Lincolnshire aged 82 She was buried in Plumtree churchyard on 26 November 1932 also in Plot 232.

[26] Nigel Madan

Instituted: 12 February 1907 (by the Lord Bishop of Southwell and the Rev. F. J. Ashmall. Rural Dean)

Patron: William Elliott Burnside, Esquire

Resigned: May 1912


Born in December 1840, at Batheaston, Somerset, the son of Revd Spencer Madan and Louisa Elizabeth Madan (née Gresley).

Nigel married Elizabeth Henrietta Howard in Milstead, Kent on 28 January 1883. Elizabeth was born on 4 November 1842 in Donnington, Shropshire, daughter of Revd Henry Edward John Howard and Henrietta Elizabeth Howard (née Wright).

Revd Madan was involved with the following churches:

1864 – 1866: St Oswald?, Ashbourne, Derbyshire (Curate & Rector)
1866 – 1881: St Editha, Polesworth, Warwickshire (Curate)
1881 – 1899: St Wilfrid, West Hallam, Derbyshire (Rector)
1899 – 1907: St Cuthbert, Doveridge, Derbyshire
1907 – 1912: St Mary, Plumtree (Rector)

Elizabeth Henrietta died on 4 March 1915 at Bleasby Hall, aged 72. She was buried in Bleasby churchyard

Revd Madan died on 6 August 1915 at Bleasby Hall, aged 74 and was buried in Bleasby churchyard.

His death was reported in the Litchfield Mercury (13 August 1915)

The announcement of the death at his residence, Bleasby Hall, near Southwell, of the Rev Canon Madan, will be received with regret in many parishes in the diocese of Southwell ...

It was in 1907 that Canon Madan was appointed rector of Plumtree. Five years later advancing years impelled him to go into retirement, Bleasby Hall being selected as the abode. The departure from Plumtree was made the occasion for the presentation of an illumined address to Canon and Mrs. Madan, practically every resident householder in the village signing the document. That address furnished the keynote to the deceased clergyman's character —"You have, by your kind sympathy, kindness, and unfailing courtesy, endeared yourselves to our hearts, and by your devotion to duty you have shown us an example to follow which must always remain impressed on our memories.

The late clergyman was a generous benefactor of the poor in an unostentatious manner, which made him deservedly popular. Probably no legitimate plea ever met with a refusal.

Canon Madan, who had taken an active part in Church life in the diocese, sustained a severe blow in the death of his wife in March last, was buried in Bleasby Churchyard on Tuesday.

[27] Charles Doyne Powell

Instituted: 9 August 1912

Patron: Mrs William Elliott Burnside

Died: 25 July 1915


Born on 2 January 1859, at Kill of the Grange, county Dublin, Ireland, the son of Nathaniel Robert Powell and Annette Georgina Mary Powell (née Groome).

Revd Powell married Minnie Lowry (née Hosking) in St Mark’s church, Notting Hill, Kensington & Chelsea, England London on 15 September 1887. Minnie was born on 21 July 1861 in Ventnor, Isle of Wight.

Locally, he was involved with the following churches:

1887 – 1891: St Matthias, Sneinton (Curate)
1891 – 1896: St John, Mansfield (Curate)
1910 – 1912: St Swithin, Kirklington (Rector)
1912 – 1915: St Mary, Plumtree (Rector)

Rev Powell died on 25 July 1915 aged 56 and was buried in St Mary's churchyard on 27 July 1915 in Plot 266. His death was reported in the Nottingham Journal dated Monday 26 July 1915:

The death is announced of the Rev. Charles Doyne Powell, M.A.,LLD., T.C.D., rector of Plumtree with Normanton-on-the-Wolds. The deceased gentleman, who had the living since 1912, was the third son of the late Mr. Nathaniel Robert Powell of Bello Squardo, Blacrock, co. Dublin. Mr. Powell had been ill for some time and he passed away at Plumtree Rectory yesterday.

Minnie Lowry died on 27 January 1927 in London aged 65. She was buried in Plumtree churchyard on 4 February 1927 also in plot 266, as is Charles’s brother, Hugh Nathaniel Powell who died on 27 September 1914 at Plumtree Rectory, aged 57.

[28] David FitzHerbert Wright

Instituted: 28 November 1915

Patron: Mrs William Elliott Burnside

Resigned: May 1926


Born on 19 September 1867 in Standard Hill, Nottingham, the son of Henry Wright and Lucy Sophia Leslie Wright (née Melville)

David married Sara Frances Corrigan on 22 September 1897 in Loughgall, Armagh, Northern Ireland. Sara was born on 6 May 1863 in Derryscollop, County Tyrone, Ireland, daughter of Samuel & Constantia Corrigon.

They had three sons and two daughters.

Revd Wright was ordained as a deacon in Southwell diocese in 1900, and as a priest in 1901.

Locally, Revd Wright was involved with the following churches:

1900 – 1903: St Lawrence, Heanor, Derbyshire (Curate)
1903 – 1915: St Andrew, Langar (Rector)
1915 – 1926: St Mary, Plumtree (Rector)

Sarah Frances died in on 11 April 1942 at a Nursing Home in Christchurch, Dorset.

Revd Wright died on 7 December 1959 in Torquay, Devon

Revd Wright was responsible for raising funds for – and organising the construction and dedication of – the War Memorial.

[29] Harold Robinson

Instituted: 24 June 1926 (by the Rt. Rev. the Bishop of Southwell and the Rural Dean)

Patron: Mrs William Elliott Burnside/Edward Franklin Clements (from 1927)/Bishop of Southwell (from 1931)*

Resigned: October 1936

* In the 1925 Measure, advowsons could no longer be sold and were returned to the diocese. In 1931 the Bishop of Southwell became the patron of Plumtree.


Born on 19 June 1869, in Leicester, the son of Charles Stephen Robinson and Priscilla Robinson (née Whitmore).

He studied theology at Cuddesdon College (Oxford) from 1893; was Ordained Deacon 1894; and Priest in 1895.

Harold married Annie Arabella Williams in Priory Church of St Seriol, Penmon in Anglesey, Wales on 4 January 1899. Annie Arabella was born on 2 March 1868 in Penmon in Anglesey, daughter of Henry Owen & Sarah Williams

Revd Robinson was involved with the following churches:

1894 – 1897: Aylesbury (Curate)
1897 – 1900: St Giles, Reading (Curate)
[1901 census: Clergyman living in Church Road Kibworth Beauchamp]
1901 – 1921: St Mary the Virgin, Coleorton, Leicestershire (Rector)
1921 – 1926: Christ Church, Downside, Somerset (Vicar)
1926 – 1936: St Mary, Plumtree (Rector)

For a description of village life during his time in Plumtree, see Revd Harold Robinson.

Revd Robinson died on 4 January 1944 aged 74 and was buried in Coleorton (Leicestershire) churchyard.

Revd Robinson is commemorated on a brass plate on the door to the vestry of Coleorton church:

The clock and chimes in the tower were put in motion by friends of St. Mary’s in memory of Rev. HAROLD ROBINSON MA Rector of Coleorton 1901-1921

Annie Arabella died on 26 March 1957 in East Hanningfield in Essex, aged 89. She was buried in Coleorton churchyard next to her husband.

[30] Edgar Banting

Instituted: 8 May 1937 (by the Bishop of Southwell, the Rt. Rev. Henry Mosley)

Patron: Bishop of Southwell

Resigned: 1957


Born on 5 March 1876 in Leigh-on-Mendip, Somerset, England, the son of George Banting and Emily Banting (née Lane).

Edgar Banting married Charlotte Emily Brown in December 1904 in Aston, Warwickshire. Charlotte was born on 12 September 1879 in Manchester, Lancashire, daughter of James & Ann Brown.

They had two sons: Harry Maurice James and Gareth Bernard, both of whom took holy orders. Revd Gareth Banting was tragically killed during the Second World War. 

Locally, Revd Edgar Banting was involved with the following churches:

1921 – 1933: St Lawrence, Mansfield (Rector)
1933 – 1937: All Souls, Radford, Nottingham (Rector)
1937 – 1957: St Mary, Plumtree (Rector)

Charlotte Banting died on 18 September 1957, aged 78, and is buried in St Mary's churchyard (plot 74). Shortly after Charlotte died, he resigned his post as Rector.

Edgar Banting died on 26 November 1962, aged 86, (at 53 Goldington Road, Bedford). He was cremated on 30 November 1962, and his ashes were interred in Plumtree churchyard on 14 June 1963.

[31] Arnold Doxey

Instituted: 1957

Patron: Bishop of Southwell

Resigned: 1968


Born on 12 February1902, at Eckington, Derbyshire, the son of William Herbert Doxey and Mary Elizabeth Doxey (née Hutchby).

Arnold married Barbara Annie Elizabeth Channon in All Hallows church, Ordsall, Nottinghamshire in June 1933. Barbara was born on 7 March 1909 in Retford, Nottinghamshire, daughter of Walter Edwin Channon and Annie Lizzie Channon (née Bailey).

Locally, Revd Doxey was involved with the following churches:

1929 – 1931: All Hallows, Ordsall (Curate)
1931 – 1941: St Giles, West Bridgford(Curate)
1941 – 1957: St Mary, Greasley (Rector)
1957 – 1968: St Mary, Plumtree (Rector)

Revd Doxey died on 1 January 1980 aged 77 in Keyworth.

Barbara died on 18 September 1992 in Keyworth, aged 83.

Revd Doxey was responsible for the first printed "guide" to Plumtree Parish Church, which we have reproduced here: Plumtree Parish Church.

However he also contributed several "interesting" articles to the national press: for example:

From the Daily Mirror - Friday 20 May 1966:

Chancellor Jim Callaghan may well feel he has enough crosses to bear without the Church offering him more. But a Nottinghamshire rector, the Rev. Arnold Doxey, feels that the Callaghan touch is even responsible for robbing Britain of one verse of a popular hymn.

In the hymn: "All Things Bright and Beautiful." there is a verse that goes, "The rich man in his castle and the poor man at his gate."
That verse, says the rector, has been dropped from the new hymn books because "of vicious death duties and crippling taxation."

He adds: "Because of death duties and present-day taxation, no such person now exists. The rich are having to throw open their castles and give away their estates."

Mr. Doxey, who is rector of Plumtree, is no destructive critic. He has prepared two alternative verses as substitutes "to fit in with the modern trend of things."
One reads: "The poor man in his castle, compelled to pay the rate and taxed beyond endurance has sold his whole estate."
The other: "The poor man in his castle, officials at his gate assess his rates and taxes, and claim the whole estate."

[32] Norman Alfred Chadwick

Instituted: 13 July 1968

Patron: Bishop of Southwell

Retired: 22nd April 1984



Born on 20 April 1908, in Poplar, London, the son of James Alfred Chadwick and Minnie Chadwick (née Blunn).

Norman married Ella White in St Augustine’s church New Basford on 9 October 1937. Ella was born on 27 August 1902 in Blackburn, Lancashire, only daughter of William White and Fanny Jane White (née Johnston). 

Locally, Revd Chadwick was involved with the following churches:

???? – 1946: St Augustine, New Basford (Curate)
1946 – 1954: St Lawrence, Mansfield (Vicar)
1954 – 1968: St Luke, Broughton Sulney (Rector)
1968 – 1979: St Mary, Plumtree (Rector)

Revd Chadwick died on 21 AugusGrave of Revd Norman Chadwickt 1984 in Nottingham aged 76; his ashes are interred in Plumtree churchyard (plot W22).

Two offertory plates were presented to St Mary's in memory of Revd Chadwick on 17th Nov 1985

Ella died on 24 July 1989 in Mansfield, Nottinghamshire, aged 86. Her ashes were interred in Plumtree churchyard on 29 July 1989 also in plot W22.

[33] Stephen John Oliver

Instituted: 23 October 1979 (by the Bishop of Southwell, the Rt Revd D Wakeling)

Patron: Bishop of Southwell

Resigned: 7 April 1985


In the early 1980s Revd Oliver initiated a project to restore the Victorian paintwork and gilding to its original glory. This took about 10 years to complete and cost around £25,000. A full description of this work is contained on the 1980s Church Restoration page.

He resigned in 1985 to join the BBC and, later, was appointed Bishop of Stepney from 2003 until his retirement in 2010.

[34] John James Stafford

Instituted: 23 July 1985

Patron: Bishop of Southwell

Retired: 17 February 1995


Was the last paid Rector of Plumtree. No other information is currently known.


Meanwhile in the Church of England: On 12 March 1994 the Church of England ordained its first female priests.

[35] Mary Gee

Licenced as Associate Priest: 30 July 1995 (by Ven. T O Walker, the Archdeacon of Nottingham)

Patron: Bishop of Southwell

Retired: 15 April 2001


Revd Gee was the first female priest to be incumbent in the parish

In 1995, she initiated the conversion of the west tower to accommodate a WC with disabled access, a kitchenette and a store room above


[36] Malcolm Hugh Wainwright

Licenced as Priest-in-Charge: 6 February 2002 (by George, Bishop of Southwell)

Patron: Bishop of Southwell & Nottingham

Resigned: 1 February 2009


Revd Wainwright was the Priest-in-Charge of the benefice of St Mary's Plumtree and St Peter's Tollerton. However, joining these two parishes was not a success and, after his resignation, the benefice was disolved.

Revd Wainwright is now Hon. Priest-in-Charge of Skelton with Shipton and Newton on Ouse; Hon. Assistant Curate of Alne, of Brafferton with Pilmoor, Myton-on-Swale and Thormanby, of Coxwold and Husthwaite, of Crayke with Brandsby and Yearsley, of Easing­wold with Rasklef, of Strensall, and of the Forest of Galtres (York).


Meanwhile in the Church of England: On 11 July 2005 a vote was passed by the Church of England's General Synod in York to allow women's ordination as bishops.

[37] Trevor Harwood Kirkman

Licensed as Priest-in-Charge: 25 January 2010 (by George, Bishop of Southwell & Nottingham)

Patron: Bishop of Southwell & Nottingham

Retired: 31 January 2022

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