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A History of Horncastle by James Conway Walter

They were both interred at Spilsby

The Rev. Thomas Betty succeeded in 1857, and held office till 1863, when his health broke down; his last entry in the books was written on Feb. 19, 1863, "God bless them all, church and congregation, Amen." He returned and died at Knottingley, March 26, 1865. During his ministry a debt of 75 pounds on the chapel was paid off, and in 1859 a minister's house was purchased for 250 pounds, and some 30 pounds spent in repairs, the money being raised by a bazaar.

The Rev. Thomas Lord followed in 1863, and ministered till 1866. He succeeded in paying off the debt on the British School, and on leaving the town was presented with a handsome timepiece by the Committee of the School. He had as a youth attended the chapel of Dr. Doddridge (already named) in Northampton, but left there in 1834. His first pastorate had been at Wollaston, from 1834 to 1845; then removing to Brigstock, where he ministered from 1845 until his transfer to Horncastle in 1863. {82}

He was succeeded by the Rev. J. E. Whitehead, from 1867 to 1871. During his ministry several improvements were effected in the interior of the chapel, including the erection of a commodious platform; oak furniture and elegant fittings being added, and the seats of the choir re-arranged.

The Rev. W. Rose followed from 1872 to 1878. He had been stationed at Portsea, but visited Horncastle in July, 1872, to preach for Home Missions, and was afterwards invited to undertake the ministry here. Being a native of Boston, and having resided for some time in Spilsby, he was glad to return to his native county, and commenced his ministry in January, 1873. During his pastorate the old seats in the body of the chapel were removed, and modern open benches substituted. In 1874 a plot of land was offered by the late Mr. W. A. Rayson for new school premises. Mr. Rose and the late Mr. J. E. Ward, as Treasurer and Secretary, took up the matter, and the present schools were erected on the south of the chapel. On the ground floor is a spacious room, 39-ft. long by 24-ft. wide; there is a vestry for the minister, an infant classroom, and a kitchen with convenient arrangements for tea meetings; above are six large classrooms for boys and girls. These were opened April 29, 1875; among the contributors being Mr. Samuel Morley of London, at one time President of the Society, and Sir Titus Salt, who both, with Mr. W. A. Rayson, gave 50 pounds each.

After Mr. Rose's retirement both he and Mrs. Rose still continued to take a kindly interest in matters connected with the chapel. She was a member of a highly respectable family in the neighbourhood, being a daughter of Mr. Searby of Wainfleet. Her health, however, was latterly precarious, and she died May 16, 1879, her husband dying Dec. 10, in the same year. They were both interred at Spilsby. Mr. Rose was highly esteemed among all denominations; was on cordial terms of intimacy with the Rev. Arthur Scrivenor, then Vicar of Horncastle; and, among other duties, he acted on a committee at Woodhall Spa, in connection with a Cottage Hospital for the poor, in which he took great interest, and which was carried on by the writer of these pages, then Vicar of Woodhall Spa.

Mr. Rose was succeeded by the Rev. W. T. Poole, of Paulers' Pury, Northants; a former Scripture Reader at Reading, who ministered here from 1878 to 1880, when he was transferred to Bracknall, Berks. He was followed by a Nottingham student, the Rev. W. Archer, from 1881 to 1885. Then came the Rev. J. H. Dingle, of Ruskington, near Sleaford, from 1885 to 1886, when he left for a charge at Patricroft, near Manchester. During his pastorate a very successful Bazaar was held in November, 1886, from the proceeds of which the manse was further improved, and the chapel again renovated, with decorations from the designs of Mr. C. H. Stevens.

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