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The Rushden Echo and Argus, 21st January 1955
Rectory repairs uncover history

postcard repairs
A postcard showing the round turret window
and right - making the repairs in 1955

St. Mary’s rectory, Rushden, is in the hands of workmen. Part of the rambling old house is being pulled down, and the remainder is to become a more compact home for the rector and his family.

The problem of adapting these old fashioned church properties is a familiar one all over England.

“The Church Commissioners are dealing with thousands of similar cases” says the rector, the Rev. I. E. Douglas-Jones. “Most of these old rectories were built in the spacious days of the Victorian era, when the rector and his family could live in high style on about £300 a year, with three or four servants earning a £5 annual wage, but times have changed.”

This house was built in 1870 for Canon Barker. Since then six incumbents have lived in the present rectory: The Rev. C. J. Gordon, Canon W. R. Morse, the Ven. Arthur Kitchin, the Rev. Percy Robson, the Rev. Travers S. Stoney and Canon Edwin A. Green.

The worst part of the structure on the north side of the building is being pulled down.

Back to 1690

During demolition a number of old books and papers have come to light. One of the finds is a sheaf of churchwarden’s accounts between 1710 and 1808. The oldest document dates back to 1690.

Renovation of the rectory will cost £3,000, half of which is provided by the Church Commissioners. The rest is the responsibility of the parish. About £800 has been raised so far.

The rector and his family hope to move in by April.

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