KIRKBY, EAST, Historical and Antiquarian on the Parishes Round Horncastle

KIRKBY, EAST. (Notes Records Historical and Antiquarian on the Parishes Round Horncastle. By J Conway Walter 1904).

East Kirkby is situated just below the steep slope of the Wolds, near their southern extremity, between 7 and 8 miles south south-east of Horncastle, 6 miles south-west from Spilsby, and 9 miles north-east from Tattershall. From Horncastle it is approached via Scrivelsby and Moorby, it is contiguous, on the east, to Revesby.

This in one of the 220 odd parishes in the county which possessed a church before the Norman Conquest. At that period it seems to have been united with Revesby, since in Domesday Book (1080-86) "Cherchebi" and "Resuesbi" are given together, and it is stated that "the whole manor and all that belongs thereto is six miles long, and six miles broad."    There are 12 carucates (or 1440 acres) rateable to gelt (i.e., 2s. to the carucate) ; and the same extent of arable land (or 2,880 acres in all) ; with (in Saxon

times), 34 socmen, and 14 villeins.     The great Norman Noble, Ivo Taillebois, Chief of the Angevine troops of the Conqueror, was lord of this manor, through his marriage with the wealthy Saxon, Lady Lucia, heiress of the Thorolds. On his death early in life-a death not regretted by her, for the marriage had been forced upon her by the Conqueror-she re-married, with hardly a decent delay, Roger de Ramara, about 1093;

and by him had a son, William de Romara, who was created Earl of Lincoln, This William founded Revesby Abbey in 1142, and, by an interchange of lands, while retaining Revesby, Moorby, Wilksby, &c., as a compact property, he separated East Kirkby as a distinct domain. Among those with whom exchanges were effected was one Ivo, a priest, who held a church at Thoresby, probably standing on the site of the present Revesby church, In lieu of this, the Earl gave to Ivo the church of East Kirkby with its appurtenances, and a toft near the churchyard. In the 13th century, the family of de la Launde (represented, down to recent times, by the Kings, of Ashby de la Laund, near Sleaford) -were manorial lords* of East Kirkby, while the Earls of Exeter  had the manor of Thoresby and Revesby, &c. East Kirkby, as well as Revesby, was in the the soke of Old Bolingbroke, and, as parts of the Duchy of Lancaster, the Sovereign would be the superior lord of the various manors in that soke, or " Honour," as it was named, as being connected with royalty. Accordingly, in 1604, we find that Sir V. Skinner, of Bolingbroke, was appointed by the crown keeper of Kirkby Park, the site of which is still shown on old maps; and, according to "Liber Regis," in 1762 the Sovereign presented to the benefice, although, by some arrangement, William Ellis, Esq., had presented in 1719.

* The Kings held property in this neighbourhood late in the 16th century. By will, dated Jan. 23, 1614, Edwd. King, of Ashby, bequeathed to his son John the manor house of Salmonby, and it was not till 1595 that the Hall of Ashby de la Laund was built.

 The manor (1904) now belongs to R. Maidens, Esq., and Dr. T. Robinson, but most of the soil belongs to the Stanhope or Coltman families, the patronage of the benefice being in the hands of the former.

Among the Revesby charters and deeds, printed by the late Rt. Hon. E. Stanhope, is one (No. 27) of Alan Smerehorn, of East Kirkby, dated 1165, by which he gives a watermiil and premises to the Abbots of Revesby, with the right to draw water through his land, from Bolingbroke to Kirkby ; the Abbey thus being supplied with water.* He also, by another deed (No. 28), conveys to the Abbey his rights in certain lands in Kirkby, undertaking all claims and services due to the King, in return far which the Revesby Monks confirm to him certain rights in Hag-naby.

By a deed of the same period, Alan, son of Waiter of Kirkby, gives his feudal rights, in certain lands in Kirkby, to the monks, with lands in Hagnaby and Engcroft in Stickford, free of all claims from the King.

A charter of Richard I. (" Dugdale," v: 456) confirms to the Monks of Revesby, among other possessions, 620 acres of land in E. Kirkby, and part of Kirkby Wood, along the road called " Swinistigate " (No. 40 B). N.B. There is still a Swinecote in Revesby. Various other deeds assign to the monks lands given by William son of Ivo, of Kirkby (No. 43) ; by Alan son of Walter of Kirkby (No, 45) ; by Lucy widow of Walter Faber, of Kirkby (a "Smith?") a meadow, "to decorate and strew the monk's choir:" (No. 56). While Henry Smerehorn gives to them his "servant Robert, son of Colsvan, with all his chattels" (No. 53); and Alan Smerehorn, of Kirkby, gives a plot " ad portam josep: ' (at the Joseph gate), among several others, taking on himself all claims to the king or others (No. 58).   The seal of Smerehorn is a round one with the device, a man blowing a horn. Gaufrid, son of Alan Buche, of Kirkby, gives land in E. Kirkby specially as "gate alms " for the poor (No. 68) ; the same Gaufrid also confirming the gift made by his brother Walter, of a meadow in Goutscroft (No. 70).N.B.-" Gout," or, writ fully, “go-out,” means a spring issuing from a hill side, of which there are many on the Wold slopes (Streatfeild,

*This conduit still exists.      “ Linc. & Q.” vol. iv. p. 131. 

"Lincolnshire and the Danes," p. 174).* Alan de Cuilter, of Kirkby, among other lands, gives a place (placeam) called " gayres " (No, 101); gaire meaning a triangular plot which requires ploughing a different way to the rest of the ground. t A meadow in Kirkby is given by Nicholas son of Roger, of Miningsby, towards maintaining “ the  light before the image of St. Nicholas in Kirkby Church, every St. Nicholas' day.”(No. 119).

There are other deeds connected with East Kirkby, but these are typical. We give here some other records connected with East Kirkby, which are of more or less interest, taken from "Lincolnshire Wills."

William Saltfletby, alias Massenge tt of “ Kirkby juxta Bolingbroke,” by his will, dated 3 January, 1443, requests that he may be buried in Kirkby Church ; and leaves money to the church, as well as to the Church of St. Peter in Eastgate, Lincoln; also to his daughter,

 his wife, and her daughter, certain lands in Kirkby, Miningsby, and West Kele ; and his house- opposite the Church of St. Peter, Eastgate, “called the Gryffin.” The witnesses are Robt. Drydyke, Vicar of Kirkby (N.B.The place-name Drysykes occurs in Salmonby); John Cokeryll, chaplain of the same; and Hugh Wellys, clerk.

Richard Skepper, of East Kirkby, by will dated 26 May, 1556, requests to be buried in the church ; and leaves to his sons, Thomas, George, and Edward, and daughters, Bridget and Anne, his copyholds in Kirkby, Miningsby, Bolingbroke, Waynflete, Irby, Thorpe, and Friskney. N.B.This was a family from Durham. John Ballet, parson of Nether Toynton, by his will, of 17 April, 1558, leaves his "gown, that the Bishop of Ely gave him,”to Mr. Goodryke, of Kirkby§ and a gold ring;

*At Greetham there is afield called Gousies, or Gouts-leys. We find the same in Gautby: “St. Peter at Gowts,” in Lincoln; and “Gaut” is a common term for the outlets of fen and marsh drains.

t There is in Hameringham a Baldvine gaire, given by the clerk to the Revesby Monks. Recorded in” notes on Hameringham.”

tt The name Massenge is not a common one, but we find that Thomas Masinge was presented to the Vicarage of Frampton, by King Philip and Queen Mary, 6 August,

1556 (Lincolnshire Institutions, “Linc. N & Q,” vol. v., p. 165.)

§ The Goodricks were a fairly good family, originally settled at Nortingley Somersetshire see notes on Glovers visitations; but the Lincolnshire branch came from the marriage of Henry, `son of Robert Goodrick, with the heiress daughter of Thomas Stickford of this county. According to one version, one of his descendants, Edward Goderyck, of East Kirkby, married as his second wife, Jane, daughter and heir of a Mr. Williamson of Boston, whose children were Henry, Thomas (Lord Chancellor), John, Katherine, and Elizabeth ; of whom John married the daughter and co-heiress of Sir Lionel Dymoke, of Stickford.

he also leaves money to repair the roads between Fulletby and Horncastle.

Connected with the Goodricks, by marriage, were the Littleburies, descended as is shown elsewhere' from a very ancient knightly family, originally seated in south Lincolnshire, and hence we find the following will of Humphrey Littlebury, of East Kirkby, dated 2 Sep., 1568, by which he leaves all his lands in Hagworthingham to his son John, who is to pay to his brother Edward xx'' a year "for his exhibition ,"t during the widow's lifetime; the annuity to cease when the said Edward becomes a " counsaler," and able to provide for himself. He bequeaths his lands in Hareby, East Keal, Keal Cotes, and Raithby, to his daughter Ann, " if she will be ordered by her friends, Sir John Kersey and John Littlebury," and if she will not, then "never a penny." It would rather appear, from this testamentary provision, that the said daughter Ann was somewhat of a wilful "hussy." Sir John Kersey would be one of the family who came in for a share of the Revesby estates after the extinction of the direct line of the Dukes of Suffolk. To his daughter Dorothy he leaves " one hundred marks " with a like proviso. To his son John he leaves a "ring with the seal," i.e., the family signet ; also "one silver salt, VI. silver spoons, 1 silver goblet, gilt, a flat silver piece, and 1of my silver pots I bought in London."        Reference is then made to an inventory of Lyon Goodricke, deceased, which was bequeathed to testator's wife, Winifred, and Edward Goodricke, her son. The testator had married ( I ) Ursula, co-heir of Sir John Kersey, knt., of Grove, co. Notts, and (2) Winifred, daughter of Henry Sapcote* of Lincoln, and widow of Lyon Goodricke, of East Kirkby.

According to another version, the John, of Bolinghroke, who died in 1493, had two sons, William and Richard. William was of East Kirkby, and was father of (1) the John, above-named, who married Miss Dymoke. (2) Henry, ancestor of the Goodricks, baronets, of Yorkshire, and (3) Thomas, Bishop of Ely, and Lord Chancellor, temp. Ed. VI., and one of the compilers of the Reformed Liturgy

(" Linc. N. & C.," vol, i., p. 122). In the reign of Elizabeth, Edward Goodrick, of East Kirkby, subscribed £25 to the Armada Fund ("Linc. N. and Q," vol. ii., p.132. ; "Architect. S. Journal," 1894, p. 214.)

* Recorded in " Notes " on Salmon by and Raithby.

t The term "exhbition" is equivalent to maintenance ; Edward was evidently studying for "the Bar," and this was provision for him until he should be able to "practice at the Bar," as counsel in legal suits. The term exhbition is still used at the Universities, along with "scholarship," for certain allowances, which are granted to students, after examination, to aid them in their University course. 

We have noted, above, a Richard Skepper, of East Kirhby, whose will was dated 26 May, 1356. We find later, the will of George Skeeper, of Boston, evidently the same name, of date 28 Sep., 1606 in which he desires to be buried in ye parish church of East Kirkby." The name still survives in this neighbourhood.

Another name still occupying a position in the county is that of Booth, and we find that William Booth, of East Kirkby, by will dated 31 Oct., 1584, left property to his brother George's children in Cheshire, to his brother Edward's children, of Rand, to George Booth of Thorpe, and to Thomas Booth, his brother's son ; appointing as his executors, Sir Thomas Scales and John Scales, his sons-in-law.

We have named, above, Edward Goodrick, of East Kirkby. He died in 16 15, and by his will, of 16 August in that year, he left the bulk of his property to his son Lyon, but ,£35 from lands in Suffolk to his daughter Washbourne, besides £400, in the hands of Sir Thomas Jenney, as her portion ; "a best bed" to another daughter; and "bedsteads of those in Suffolk," to four other daughters; all married, “ 2 Jacobuses to each as a token of my love.” Small sums are bequeathed to his cousin, Richard Palfreyman, t and his godson, Nathaniel Palfreyman ; to his servant John Tupholme 20s besides his wages 13s. 4d. His "grandson John Godricke to have the manor of Stickney when 22 years old," and his cousin Richard Palfreyman to have it meanwhile; paying "a penny a year to Lyon Godricke." The will was proved at Horncastle by Lyon Goodrick and Richard Palfreyman, 25 Oct., 1615.

* The Sapcotes were a well-to-do middle-class family.In 1554 Thomas Chamberlaine, clerk, was presented to the Church of Lee, Lincoln Diocese, by Edward Sapcote, gentleman, one of the executors of the will of Henry Sapcote, late alderman of the City of Lincoln (“Lincoln Institutions,”Linc. N. and Q," v., p. 173.) William Sapcote was Rector of Belchford in I558. BY a Chancery Inquisition postmortem, dated at Hornecastell, 4 Nov., 23 Henry VII. (1507), the manor of Taunton (Toynton) and advowson of Nether Taunton with other property were recovered for Thomas Sapcote, and Joan his wife, and other parties.(“ Architect. S. Journal," 1895, pp. 61-2.)

t The Palfreyman family resided at Lusby. . They were descended from William Palfreyman, who was Mayor of Lincoln in 1536. Mr. E. Palfreyman contributed “1 Iauncar and 1 light horse" to the defence of the country when the Spanish Armada was expected; one of them is named among the List of Gentry in the county, on the Herald's Visitation in 1643 (" Linc. N. & O," ii.,

p. 73.)  Ralph Palfreyman was presented to the Vicarage of Edlington in 1869, by Anthony Palfreyman, merchant of the Staple, Lincoln (“Architect. S. Journal,” 1897 p. 15.) 

A name which we cannot omit to notice in connection with East Kirkby is that of Silkstone ; there being a monumental slab in the parish church of Robert de Silkeston, who died in 1347. Among 14 documents in the possession of Porter Wilson, Esq., of Louth, this Robert is a principal party in 13 of them ; by which lands are conveyed to him by Ranulphus, son of Baldwin de Thorpe, in Ireby ; by Robert, son of Philip de  Kirkeby, in Kirkby; by Walter de Kirkby, in Kirkby; by Hugo de Hatton, lands in Kirkby; by Walter, son of Robert de Langena, lands in Kirkby; Robert, son of Adam Pertrich, of Bolingbroke ;  Alan, son of Walter de Kirkeby, and William, son of Henry de Kirkeby, give him other lands in  Kirkeby ; Beatrice, widow of William Wright, of Miningsby,gives him lands in Miningsby ; John de Waynflet gives him lands in that parish; and Robert de Swylington, Thomas de Marketon, Rector of Hareby, and Robert de Miningsby, chaplain, grant to him lands in “Kirkby, Winthorpe, Thorp, Waynflet, Irby, ffriseby (Firsby), Boston, Leek, Wrangel, Stepying, ffrisseneye (Friskney), Bolynbrok, and Menyngesby,” by Deed, given at Kirkebi, 26 Dec., 29 Ed. III. (1355). Robert de Silkeston thus became a proprietor of large estates. At a later period Sir Robert Sylkeston had issue Alicia, who was “ maryed to Robert Grynne.”* A large portion of the property passed to that family, and through them to the skeppers already mentioned, and from them, by marriage, to the Laddingtons ; one of whom, Thomas Loddington, was Vicar of Horncastle in the early years of the 13th century; his name being on one of the church  bells with date I7I7.

Sir John Browne, knight, resided here for several years, holding lands in East Kirkby, conveyed to him by Lionel Goodrick in 1616, and on a dispute arising between him and the Skeppers, already mentioned, an agreement was made, 20 May, 1619, by which Sir John granted to Richard Skepper certain property, for 2,000 years, at a

peppercorn rent; Richard Skepper in return granting to Sir John, other lands for a like term and consideration. (Mr. R. W. Gouiding, "Line. N & Q,," vol. v. p. 75).

* The Grynnees were " nativi," or tenants in bondage ; yet, as sometimes

happens in modern days, a son married the daughter of a knight.            They were attached to the manor of Ingoldmells, which then belonged to the King.

Some of these lands were known as Bonthelandes, (Boothlands), West-wang, Wayteclif, BuIgaire, Inge-croft, Langemer-dayles, Goutscroft, &c.

Sir John Browne was 2nd son of Sir Valentine Browne, of Croft, " Treasurer and Vittler of Barwicke, and Treasurer of Ireland in ye raigne of Queen Elizabeth,” who married Elizabeth, daughter of Sir John Monson, of South Carlton, ancestor of Lord Oxenbridge. Sir John Browne was “ Sergant to King James in his privy chamber.”   He married (1) Cicely, daughter of William Kirkman, Esq., of Easter Keale, who only lived 20 weeks after marriage ; and (2), Francis, daughter of Richard Herbert, Esq., of Montgomerie Castle,  She was youngest sister of George Herbert, who wrote the well-known poem, “The Country Parson,” and of Edward, Lord Herbert of Cherbury, who was so prominent a figure in the time of Charles I. They were nearly related to the Pembroke, family, and descended from Sir Richard Herbert of Edwd. IV.'s time. There is an elaborate altar tomb in Croft church, with effigies of Sir Valentine and his lady above; and of their eight sons and seven daughters on the panels below. Beside this is an equally elaborate monument of Sir John and his 2nd wife. (" Arcitect. S. Journal," vol. viii. PP. 70, 71).

Another family, with a good old Saxon name, connected with East Kirkby, were the Elands (Ea-land or Eyland), representatives of whom have lived in this parish within quite recent times ; the last of them being William Fawcett Ealand residing at the High Hall in 1860-70. The name means Island-land, or water land. “Sir William de Eland was constable of Nottingham castle in 1330, and M.P. for the county in 1333 (Baily's "Annals,” vol i. p. 223). They possessed the "Honour of Peverel." In Baumber church there is a slab of John Ealand (obiit 1463) and his two wives, in the north aisle.t A branch of the family resided at Raithby near Louth.

* The prefix may either be Ea i.e. Eau, water, or Ey, Ea, island.   The small islands in the Thames are called eyots.

t By an Inquisition taken at Partney, 8 Sep. 7 Hen. VIII (A.D. 1490, it was found that Bernard Eland, son of Eustace Eland, late of Stirton, Esquire is an idiot, and that he has an infirmity called “ Morbus Caducus ; and he held his manor of Stirton of the lord the King, by the service of two parts of a knight's fee,  (Archit, S. Journ.”1195, p. 74.

Toward the close of the 16th century, one of them resided at Cawkwell, and had that manor and the advowson of the benefice.* Others had estates, and lived at various places in Yorkshire.

In the latter part of the 17th century another family, the Webberley's of Addlethorpe, resided at East Kirkby. They intermarried with the Amcotts family, now represented by Colonel Cracroft Amcotts, of Hackthone Hall, Lincoln. John Webberly, who was born here, was a strong partizan of Charles I, in his contentions with the Parliament. He did not die for his King on the field of battle like his compatriot Hallam, possibly of Bolingbroke recorded in “ Notes” on Bolingbroke) ; but his support of the King, and his religious opinions (Socinian), subjected him to persecution, and, in 1648, to much suffering from imprisonment. He was afterwards expelled from Lincoln College, Oxford. (Weir's History, Ed. 1828, vol. i. p. 415). The church, dedicated to St. Nicholas, is pronounced by Mr. Jeans to be “one of the most interesting in this district, though sadly patched with brick, and defaced with ugly windows.” It is no longer used for services, a small modern church having been recently erected more conveniently near the village.    The varied colouring of the edifice, from the combination of grey-green crumbling sandstone, with the red tone of the bricks, surrounded as it is also by lofty trees, render it a pleasing study for the artist, but its decayed condition inspires the fear that, unless tenderly dealt with, this interesting relic, may soon go to decay. It is to be hoped in the interest of archaeology that this may be averted.(1904).

The original Saxon church was mostly replaced by a later fabric, but now ancient, of the 14th century. It consists of nave, aisles, chancel and tower, having two bells ; this tower probably dating from early in the 13th century, occupies an unusual position, being attatched to the south aisle towards the west end of it.  Its lower storey forms a groined porch, having a head of the Saviour, rather rudely carved, as the central top of the vault. It has some early features, especially the window in its eastern face, but, we quote the late Precentor Venables, in a description given by him on the visit of the Architectural Society in 1894.

By an Inquisition, 20 Hen. Vii (A.D. 1504, 5), held at Lincoln, it was found that John Billsby and Nicholas Eland were seized of the manor of Malbissh-Enderby, with appurtenances in Hagworthingham and also of the manor of Bag Enderby, with appurtenances in Somersby, &c. 

Like the rest of the fabric, it has been patched and repaired at various periods, and most of the remains are debased. The battlemented upper storey is Perpendicular, the fabric generally being Decorated, of the 14th century. Of the windows, however, there are few surviving of that period, the west being the most noticeable. It is of two lights, beautifully designed, the mask heads of the hood moulding being remnants of an earlier style. The side windows, both of nave and chancel, were square headed.One remains, to the west of the tower, portions of others remaining among modern degradations. The eastern windows of both aisles have flamboyant tracery, but now blocked and partly destroyed.    The blocked arch of an entrance to a north chantry which has been removed, is seen in the north aisle wall. It must have been filled in at an early date, as the window inserted is of the Tudor period. The piscina of this chantry altar, with a square basin, is still to be seen outside the church. In the north wall of the chancel, a small two-light window is worth attention as an excellent example of the purest Decorated. The south chancel wall has three-light windows, with segmental heads and super-mullioned tracery of Perpendicular date; one of these has been removed to form a poor east window, in place of a good 14th century window, destroyed a few years ago. The eastern gable is surmounted by a good cross and saddle stone. The windows of the south aisle are of the meanest type. There is an arcade of four bays, with Decorated arches supported on very slender octagonal piers, which are too tall and slender, and which drive up the arches too high. The moulded brackets which serve as responds, being elaborately moulded, deserve notice. The roofs are very poor, being of a later period; one of the beams bears the date 1583.  The chancel arch has been decapitated and blocked by boarding, but the rood-screen below is an unusually good specimen of Perpendicular. It has five bays, the centre being double the width of the others, and having still its panelled doors. It is 12ft. 4ins. wide, and nearly 18ft. high.* (Dr. Mansel Sympson, "Architect. S. Journ.," 1890, p. 209). Parts of the parclose which formerly enclosed the chantries at the ends of the aisles, still remain. The * This rood-screen has been reproduced in late years in the restored churches of Brant Broughton and Thornton Curtis.          (" Linc. N. & Q.," 1896, p. 4g).

Silkstone chantry on the south retains its decorated trefoil piscina.

In the floor of the south aisle is an incised slab, commemorative of Six Robert Silkstone, the builder of the chantry and church: The late Bishop Trollope's rendering of the Latin inscription, which is somewhat defaced, the slab being broken into four pieces, is as follows:-“ Here is buried Sir Robert Silkstone. He erected this church and chantry. He departed hence in 1347, and on the 14th of June lost his life. To whom may God ever grant rest in Heaven. Amen” The tradition is that he died an untimely death, if not by his own hand. (" Linc. N. & 1896, p. old ) oak seating remains at the west end, and there are fragments, scattered about, of other screen-work.   In the north wall of the chancel is a narrow trefoil-headed recess, thought by some to be an Easter sepulchre ; it has a curious carved panel, ,with three kneeling figures, supposed to be the three Maries, each holding a heart. The recess is an aumbrey, intended for the Host. The projecting basin, which Mr. Bloxam thought was a receptacle for “ creeping silver,” is a piseina and the so-called carved “ hearts” are boxes for spice. This portion of the service of the Mass is referred to by Barnaby Googe (1570), in the lines:

“While frankincense and sweet perfume Before the shrine they bum.”

The font is a good sample of Perpendicular, having a panelled octagonal bowl, supported on a panelled shaft, standing on a platform of steps ; the panels contain heads and flowers. There are fragments of old stained glass scattered about the windows, and old encaustic tiles in the floor.   A St. Edmund's penny was found some years ago on the north side of the church, which the late Vicar, the Rev. G. Maughan, pronounced to have been issued before A.D. 905. Not far distant, in the year 1899, on some cottages being pulled down, there were found some fragments of dog-tooth pattern, and portions of columns and capitals, which are supposed to have come originally from Revesby ; these are now in the garden of Mr. T. Coltman, at Hagnaby Priory.

The chantry on the north side of the church formerly existing, was called the Jesus Chapel. Here was buried William Goodrick, father of the Bishop of Ely, at his own request, by his will dated 20 March, 1517, to be buried “in the chapel of Jhus in my p'ysh church of Saint Nicholas.”* “On the viij. Kal. Nov., 1344, Robert de Silkestone presented " Thomas West, of Mucton, priest,  to this chantry (then newly founded), and on Kal. June 1346, he presented " Rob., son of John Fowler, of Mithingsby, priest, to the same chantry."    ("Line. N. &O," 1896, p. 51, note). 

* Of Thomas Goodrick, Bishop of Ely, we may observe that he was rather a "timeserver," though one of the supporters of Lady Jane Grey, and acting on her Council during her nine days' reign.On the accession of Queen Mary, he did homage to her, and was allowed to retain his bishopric. The Historian says of him, that "he was a busy secular-spirited man, given up to factions and intrigues of state, preferring to keep his bishopric before the discharge of his conscience.

The name was originally spelt Godryke, and a Latin epigram was composed, in allusion to this, as follows :

"Et bonus et dives, bene junctus et optimus ordo, Proecedit bonitas, pone sequuntur opes" ; which may be Englishised thus:

Both good and rich, duly combined, The good in front, the rich behind:" (Bunkum)

There is probably a trace of the Goodrick family in a carved stone over the kitchen door at the farmhouse close by the church, on which the device is a cross " fitchee," rising from another recumbent cross, combined with a circle, between the initials L and G, with the date above 1544. (This is Lionel Goodrickes Merchant mark more detail can be seen in the PDF files).

In my opinion the misspelling of the Goodricke name stems from such silly prattling as Good and Rich his name was never spelled Goodrich in any authentic documentation I have seen.


Edited by and revised by Michael B Goodrick.2000.


Gregory Croft And Margaret Croft Foundation

East Kirkby 16th May 1719, 250th anniversary

Edited by Michael B Goodrick.

Chapter 1

The beginning of East Kirkby as a settlement is lost in the depths of the Stone Age. Originally the sea covered the site of the present village the beach lying just at the foot of the Wolds, which rise, behind the present Vicarage.


In Mesolithic times there was a settlement on the hill at West Keal about two miles away. There was probably a settlement at Kirkby too but, being in a valley, the people were not keen on staying long. What probably happened is that the raw materials from which flint implements were made was obtained from East Kirkby and removed to a place where the approach of raiders could be more easily observed, such as the hill at West Keal? "Smith's Piece" is littered with flints of all sizes and marks the spot where many flints were obtained.

When the Bronze Age came, East Kirkby lost its importance. There is no evidence of Roman habitation although legionnaires must have been fairly common in the area when travelling between Banovallum (Horncastle) and the great Roman Bank

Engineering work on the coast.

The Angles soon discovered the comforts of Kirkby as they invariably chose a place where a stream came from the Wold side, and in those days Brigstone and Hagnaby becks gushed down the hillside so that the valley itself was always waterlogged and frequently flooded. They established a village on the Wold side and in about the 7th century A.D. built a church. It is believed that the bases of the pillars of that original church give support to the present construction. Gradually the village grew into a collection of wattle and daub (mud and stud) thatched houses clustered round the Church.

After a period of peace came the warlike Danes who came as heathens but were converted to Christianity. They became great builders and amongst their architectural feats was the rebuilding of the Church at East Kirkby, which they had destroyed on arrival.

After the Norman Conquest "Cherchebi" was in the Manor of "Resuesbi", and William de Romara, who was made Earl of Lincoln, founded Reresby Abbey, and it was he who. In 1142, separated East Kirkby from Reresby and made it, as it originally was, an independent village.

The Church was rebuilt again about 1220 and some of this work remains visible to this day.

About 1300 Robert de Sylkstone bought a great deal of land in East Kirkby and then probably, came to live here, He restored the Church and it was dedicated to the patron saint of children, sailors and merchants St. Nicholas.

The most recent major restoration work was carried out, thanks to the generosity of Mr James Banks Stanhope, M.P of Reresby, in 1904-1906. To accommodate the congregation while the old church was unusable, Mr. Stanhope erected the building, which is now the Parish Hall. This building has for the past year or so been the scene of vigorous activity and a committee is energetically raising money to modernise it by putting in a good heating system, mains water and sewage and toilet accommodation.

In 1490 to Jane Goodrick (Nee Williamson) and William Goodrick, (see end notes) a son, Thomas, was born, destined to become Lord Chancellor of England and Bishop of Ely. His brother John was High Sheriff and father of Lionel, who erected a new High Hall, the present home of Mr. and Mrs. F. G. Reynolds and family. This was probably built in 1549 if a stone bearing the initials and mark of Lionel Goodrick inserted in the wall above the door is there to commemorate the event.

During the 16th Century the principal families residing in East Kirkby were the Goodrick’s, Skippers, Booths and Littleburies. Of these, the last of the Goodrick’s to live in East Kirkby died in 1968, and the Bew family, whose name first appeared in 1609, remained here until a few years Ago. Sir John Browne bought property in East Kirkby from Lionel Goodrick in 1615 and lived here for a time.

Apparently there was an epidemic in 1630 as there were 21 funerals that year including 3 servants of Sir Jon. It was an epidemic, perhaps this one, which resulted in the site of the present village being occupied. The old village houses, which surrounded the church, were allowed to fall into disrepair and no one bothered to rebuild them. No visible traces of these dwellings remain, most of the land having been under the plough for many years though last year, 1968, I could trace the outline of the foundations of a building at the top of the Church Field when Mr. E. Ellis was ploughing in the Spring.

There is a tradition that Oliver Cromwell spent the night at East Kirkby before the Battle of Winceby.

In the Churchyard the oldest legible tombstone is that of John Smith who died in 1697 and is buried close to the west window. William Kershaw’s stone is dated 1701. Mr. John Hutchinson, Gent, who may have been the owner of the High Hal1 at this period, died on February 11th, 1706, Part of his tombstone can be seen in the tower floor.

There were originally four bells in the Church but there is no record of what happened to one of them. Another fell at the beginning of the l9th century and was cracked. The remaining two was re-hung in the tower in 1905 and is chimed not rung.

The beginning of the l9th century saw the allotment of the fens taking place. Thos. Alinson, one of the schoolmasters at East Kirkby and also parish clerk for many years, records that the fen was enclosed in 1804, 1807 and 1813. He went himself to erect the fence round the boundary of the school land in 1807.

Mr. Thimbleby lived at High Hall at this time. During the enclosure of the fen he rode to London in two days on horseback, and rode back again in one when he was incensed by some injustice of the enclosures.

In 1858 the present vicarage was built. Replacing the previous one, which stood near the Church. The bricks and timber from this old building were bought by Mr. Spikin and used to build a carpenters shop and outhouse, which are next door to the school and in the occupation of Mr Story. This house is one have the two mud and stud dwellings existing in the village today.

When the old thatched schoolroom was pulled down in 1873 one of the large foundation stones was put across the road to help ramblers over a stile into the field opposite. The stone remains but the stile is no more.

We come now to the more recent village history some of which the older residents of the village remember. It is the time when the Rev. H. J. Bassett was Vicar, and also Chairman and Correspondent to the East Kirkby and Miningsby School, for 46 years from 1893. Mr. J. N. Scorer lived at the High Hall and Dr. Tom Robinson at the Low Hall now called East Kirkby Manor and occupied by Captain R.S. Fieldsend. I

A few of the older local inhabitants can still remember 'Dr. Tom" as he was affectionately known.

The beautiful east window in the church is his memorial. He practised medicine in Harley Street, London, but spent many weekends and other time off at East Kirkby. He was a great favourite with the children. The late Mr. Percy Scott told me he used to sit on the stile almost opposite the school and wait for the children to come out at the end of the day. He would be well prepared to receive them From his pockets he would draw handfuls of sweets or pennies which he would toss into the field for the children to scramble for. He would ensure none went without. After this he would get the children sitting around him and tell them stories he was an extremely good storyteller. He spent a good deal of time in Robert Spikin's carpenter's shop next to the school. His friends knew this and would often congregate there to exchange gossip and listen to his stories. He would see anyone in the village who was ill but always maintained that none should be ill if they stuck to the Lincolnshire diet of Beef, Bread, Beer and Butter. He was, however,

Astute enough to give Mrs. Ironmonger the privilege of selling his cough mixture this could still be bought until about 30 years ago. Dr. Tom died in May 1916. Mrs. May Delaney (formerly Parker) tells a similar story to Mr Scott and also remembers Dr. Tom asking riddles. When a correct answer was given a small money gift was handed to the child who gave the correct answer.

Mr Walter Scott says that, when "Dr. Tom" went to the shop to buy sweets for the children he usually bought a stone at a time! When he was throwing money for the children he used to begin with pennies, then sixpences, shillings and at the end he used to throw several gold sovereigns for the children to scramble for. A generous man indeed! His workmen at Manor Farm were treated in an equally generous manner. About nine men were employed there and at Christmastime each would receive from "Dr. Tom" a new pipe, 4 lb of tobacco, 9 gallons of beer, 1 stone of beef, 1 bottle of whisky and a £1 note.

Walter Scott also remembers his time as a boy at the mill. When busy his day would be from 5.0 a.m. to midnight with short breaks for lunch and tea. (For this he would receive 7/-at the end of the week). This windmill, when it was in going trim, was one of the highest in Lincolnshire, being 82 feet to the top of the brickwork.

The mill is built on 6 to 7 tons of wool so that the structure would give, when under strain from the sails, without cracking the brickwork. We must remember -, that the cross-weighed 5 tons and each of the five sails weighed 3/4 of a ton. In terms of work, with a fair wind, the mill could cope with 165 quarters in a day, mainly oats. This meant one sack of corn every five minutes. The sails were removed on November 7th, 1923, and one of the attractive features of the village was no more.

Chapter 2.

The Gregory Croft C. E School, as it has been known since 1952, is a primary school within the area controlled by the Local Education Authority of Lindsey, Lincolnshire. It is situated in the centre of the village, on the Boston Road, about a hundred yards from the village crossroads. It is an aided school, which, at that time of writing, has 35 children on roll comprising 15 Infants and 20 junior children. The majority of children come from within the parish but a number come from the neighbouring parishes of Miningsby, Hagnaby and West Keal. The school is very pleasantly situated and has ample accommodation for the children attending as its maximum capacity is about 50. It has two classrooms, a small infant classroom and a large junior classroom. There is an office for the secretary and a canteen from which the school meals are served after being received from Franklin School, Spilsby. There is also a large glass veranda at the back, which is frequently used for craftwork. There are separate toilets and cloakrooms for boys and girls, all being accessible from within the building. There is also a smal1 P.E. storeroom, a stockroom, and a cycle shed. There is a large playground but no playing field is attached or easily accessible. Mains electricity, water and sewage are laid on.

The interior is light and pleasant with an oil fired boiler running an efficient central heating system.

There is a new radio, slide and movie projector, gramophone, television set and a tape recorder in the large classroom. The radio has an extension speaker into the infant room and the television set is mounted on a solid, easily moveable, frame and can be used in either room.

The junior room can be effectively blacked out when films or slides are to be shown.

It was in 1712 that Mr. Gregory Croft and Margaret his wife built a Free School for the parishes of East Kirkby and Miningsby. It is impossible to find out very much about them Thomas Allanson says that they were Roman Catholics, yet the school, which they endowed, was at once put into the control of the vicar and has always been a Church of England School. It is interesting to note that Margaret Croft died in 1719 and is buried in East Kirkby churchyard. But the entry in the Register of Burials, almost certainly containing her name, has been scratched out and is almost undecipherable. And there is no. Record of the burial of Gregory Croft, who died five years later.

The school was endowed on 16th May, 1719 and control of the school with its "long oak table and one clock contained therein" was to pass in trust to the Vicar of East Kirkby at that time and on his death to his heirs. The trust remained in the West later West-Wheldale family until 1850. On the death of Francis Wheldale in that year there was no male heir to the family estate and the ladies who inherited did not want to bother administering the trust. Therefore in his will Francis Wheldale arranged for the trust to be administered by a body of local people. This was set up in 1858 and with minor alterations in composition has controlled the finances of the trust to the present day

The school was made over to Senior West, then vicar of East Kirkby, on the 16th May 1719. Copies of the original indenture exist, the earliest being the contemporary one for registration with the Commissioners for Lands, I have not been able to trace the copies that were signed and sealed. There is another copy, in the Lincoln County Archives, dated 1725, which was sent to Mr. Charles West from Mr. Stanhope when Mrs. Brown was contesting the right to the school land; and I have a third, beautifully written copy, in an account book going back to 1823. It is printed in a book also preserved in the Archives, called "Lincoln Charities, Report on Charities, 1819-1837", published in 1839.

Prior to the deed of Indenture setting up the school trust in 1719 the school was in being for about seven years. As far a:' can be ascertained, the original school was built on the Site of the present school and consisted of a single small room with little or no furniture apart from a long oak table and a clock. Mr. Jackson was the master until 1716 when he left to become a clergyman. This building was erected specifically as a school by Gregory and Margaret Croft and remained in existence until 1873 when the present school was erected. The present Infant classroom was added in 1895 when the number on roll was in the region of 100.

During the years to 1870 reliable evidence of the way the school functioned is difficult to unearth and it is only at certain periods when something unusual happened that much remains to interest us.

Mr. Roebuck from Wrangle took up the licence to teach in East Kirkby in 1716 and it was during his term in office that the school was endowed, and all three of the original trustees died.

David Mercator took up the post of Master of East Kirkby School in 1726 and one wonders whether he was a relative of the famous World Projector whose name appears against so many maps in our atlases.

When Mr. Mercator left in 1764 perhaps one of the most attractive characters to grace East Kirkby came. He holds the record, probably for all time, of having spent longer as Master of the School than anyone else. He was Master for 59 years— quite an outstanding achievement.

Very little would be known of Thomas Allanson if he had not become Parish Clerk in 1796 when Jon Harsnip became too ill 'to continue. From the time he took over we have, in the account books and registers of the time, witness of his 1ively character and scholastic attainments. At a time when the majority of people could not write, even if they could read, he never wrote in English if he knew the Latin, never in Latin if he knew the Greek. He appears to have known only his name in Greek but his Latin vocabulary was quite good. Gaps in his knowledge didn't worry him; he filled them with the English equivalent. R. H. Bassett considered the following to be the gem of his collection, written in the back of one of the registers:

"Quinque Arbores set in Cemiterio circum Oreas, March 1802, and hopes some person will take care they are not destroyed per Desideratum."

Because of their great age and height these trees have been cut down within the last ten years.

Thos. Allanson had one great advantage over many authors. He knew that what he wrote would be read and, realising that people in the future may like to know something of the man who gave 59 years of his life to the welfare of East Kirkby, he carefully made a list of his twelve children in the end of the 1708 register "to prevent trouble if ever wanted." At least four of them are buried with his wife and himself in "Alanson’s Garden" at the northeast corner of the Churchyard. He was very proud of his "Dormitory" as he called it.

"Memorandum that Thomas Allanson, Charity School, planted trees circum his Dormitory, north end of the church Anno Christi. 1802, wherein his four children, Johannes, Azimoth, Joyce, infinites. Joyce, thirteen years old who died of a putrid fever, February l0th, l802, he hopes and most humbly begs the church warden and church wardens for time being will endeavour to preserve it, nor let any wilfully destroy it, it being my wish and desire may be preserved, if approved of may head the trees to prevent growing too near road, etc., had leave and permission from the Vicar to plant which I hope none will pull up nor cut down, and for the great indulgence requested I hope will be granted, and remains their most Humble Servant.

Thos. Allanson (in Greek)

Scrip sits.

East Kirkby Ides Januarii primo Die 1805".

Thos. Complains bitterly of the treatment he received at the hands of the Trustees."

Ad Meinoriam. The free School . . . was repaired in September 1819, the Roof then taken down, Chimneys do and repaired at the Expense deducted from Thomas Alanson’s Salary to the amount of sixty pounds, the present Trustee, Reverend West Wheldale, residing in London he having a deal more Money remaining in hand I must not have Quire Non Nescio, the work not done workmanlike None looking to its being well done inside wanting rep's but none done I have kept in repairs from the small salary, or income I had from March 1761, the time I received Nomination to yr. 1819 by thatch etc., whenever wanted, windows repaired. And all other necessary wants. Thos. Allanson Lud. et Sacrista Scripsit primo die Januarii Anno Redemptions Mille 1820 now having been 55 yrs here as Master thereof having been too much aggrieved by Trustees during this time but could not relieve myself. I hope my successors will not be hurt as I have been past by Law and by annual Deductions etc."

Towards the end of Thomas Alanson’s long reign the Select Committee on the Education of the Poor sent a Circular Letter out asking for returns to be sent on various topics relating to existing schools. The reply in 1818 from East Kirkby gives us the following information.

EAST KIRKBY. There was one endowed day school with 25 children on roll and an annual income of £40.

Here was an un-endowed Sunday school with 30 children on roll. The Vicar was Joseph Walls and the officiating minister Henry Dawson.

Particulars of Endowment: a School, in which all the poor of East Kirkby and Miningsby are admitted at present consisting of 25, The master has a house and four acres of land and £24 per annum arising from lands supposed to be let for £4l a year, part of which is kept back for the repairs of the school house.

Other Institutions: a Sunday school. Supported by sub-scription, containing about 30 children.

Observations: the poorer classes are not without the means of educating their children.

'MININGSBY. Population 114. C. N. I.'Oste, Curate.

The minister states, that he is informed, great abuses of the endowment exist in the parish of East Kirkby, as the master conceives his salary ought to be much larger than it is, and that the house and schoolroom are in a very dilapidated state.

Other Institutions: a school containing 10 children.

Observations: the children have the privilege of attending the school at East Kirkby, as the master receives part of his salary in consideration thereof; but as reading is only taught, it is not much Frequented the parents being able to obtain the same advantage for their children nearer home.

Thus we see that in 1818 very little use is made of the schools in the two villages. There must have been over l00 children of poorer parents at that time so only about a quarter-received education of any kind at this period.

The observations by the Miningsby Minister support the complaints of Thos. Allanson, which were written about the same time. It appears. However, that he taught nothing but. reading at this time and the small dame school at Miningsby offered the same dubious advantage.

He would have been glad, in spite of his misfortunes, to have seen the rookery, which thrived in the trees above his tombstone, where he lies in the dormitory surrounded by his family.

With Thomas Alanson’s apparently sudden death early in l823 a new master was required. An advertisement appeared the Stamford Mercury reading:" Wanted, a master to instruct: the children of the parishes of East Kirkby and Miningsby. There is a house for the .................Master, with a garden, about 4 acres of land, and a salary of about Forty Pounds per annum. Knowledge of the Madras System of Education will be a recommendation.

Letter with the testimonials to be transmitted (free of expense) to Mr. Wheldale of Boston."

From this advertisement emerged John Adams who dominated the village for over 50 years.

The late Mr. Percy Scott and Mrs. Ironmonger (now over 80) remembered their parents and others telling them stories of "Old John". A policeman was superfluous whilst he lived in East Kirkby. Grown men as well as boys were afraid of him, though all liked and respected him He disapproved of the practice of "street cornering" during_ the evening so a watch was always kept down the village street for his appearance from his house. As Soon as he was seen the gathering would disperse preferring discretion to Old John's wrath.

Mrs. Ironmonger told me the story, also repeated by R. H. Bassett, of a Hodgson who stole a gooseberry bush from John's garden near the school. Unfortunately, John saw him and gave chase and, though Hodgson was a man over 30, memories of his youth in school were still strong, for he ran off up the street. Rounding the shop corner Hodgson dropped the bush over which the old schoolmaster fell. It was months before he dared meet Old John again.

Old John retired in 1873 and was the last Master of the old School. On his retirement the School was closed for a term whilst the present building, without the Infant room, was erected. He spent just four years of retirement in the village before his death in 1877. He is buried at the western edge of the burial ground, due west of the church.

Chapter 3.

"On Friday last the foundation stone of a new school at East Kirkby was laid by the Vicar. Towards the cost of its erection J. Banks Stanhope, Esq., of Reresby Abbey, has contributed £200, Thos. Coleman, Esq., of Hagnaby Priory, £50; and the Education Department £92 It is intended for the parishes of East Kirkby, Miningsby and Hagnaby."

This report appeared in the Stamford Mercury of November 14th 1873. And was the first significant act of the new body of Governors required under the new scheme prepared by the Endowed Schools Commissioners. This required nine men to be elected to the office of Governor and included all four Trustees. At their inaugural meeting on June 4th, 1873, they had to sign a declaration of " my acceptance of the office of Governor of the East Kirkby and Hagnaby School, and my willingness to do my duty as such, and to act in the trusts of the scheme dated. March 24th, 1873".

At this time there was also a Dame School in East Kirkby, which was housed in the building almost opposite to the Parish Hall and at present occupied by Mr. and Mrs. Tom Woods.

The new school buildings came into use on May 5th, 1874, with J. Johnson as Headmaster with 20 children present the first day but there were 75 on roll before a month had passed. In marked

Contrast to his two predecessors Mr. Johnson's reign was of less than three months duration due to the fact that the Vicar demanded his resignation. He had upset the Vicar's favourite family, much to the delight of the rest of the village. We must note that Mr. Johnson was the first certificated teacher to work in the School. The Governors of the time are to be commended for taking the first available opportunity of appointing a qualified teacher.

Fees were payable according to the standard of work achieved, the Governors accepting the same charges as were made at Reresby School at this time: —"Vis.": —ld., 2d. 3d., per week, sons of Farmers 6d per week, except where there are two or more attending out of a family in which case the Governors may make some reduction if they think proper.

Throughout the last 30 years of the l9th Century an average weekly attendance of about 60% was considered good. This compares with an average attendance over the last 3 years of about 95%.

In January 1887, the school closed on one evening earlier than usual so that a "meeting and Magic Lantern may be held tonight". This was probably the first showing of Lantern Slides in the village.

After Mr. Johnson's hurried departure from the scene two brothers, Charles and Henry Hand were Headmasters of the school! Successively until 1922, Henry residing in East Kirkby as Schoolmaster for almost 40 years.

The first few years of the 20th century saw the setting up of the Local Education Authorities, as we know them today. Attendance officers made regular visits and attendance rose to 90% or better and on May 22nd, 1907, the headmaster can write: "Every child on the registers is in attendance this afternoon." However these were the days before the cheap plastic raincoat and the very next day the Headmaster reports: "Very wet morning, 40 children away".

Modern miracles came to the school on January 28th, 1907, when the children were entertained with a "Cinematograph Performance" during the evening _

The school acquired a bell from the Parish Hall in 1909 and a bell turret was erected at a cost of £8 10 0. This was removed quite recently and marks both inside and out show ‘ its position. Many people in the village remember it. _

During the last few years of Henry Hand's Headship a great character, Georgie Aykrill, lived in a small cottage, now demolished, between Story's and George Lee's. Herbert Shaw owned the shop. One evening Georgie wandered across to get the evening paper. Shaw was leaning against the counter reading it when Georgie went in.

He said: "Here. Georgie, here's your paper." "I'm not having that," says Georgie. "You've read all the news out of it." He never did have it. Shaw had to give him another. Mrs and Miss Blackburn remembered that story for me. Mrs. Lingard remembers also that when Georgie moved down to the Medlam Bank at New Bolingbrook he refused to allow the carters to take his cat or his wheelbarrow. He was next seen pushing the wheelbarrow with the cat in a box towards New Bolingbrook, steadfastly refusing all others of help. Another story remembered also by Mrs. Blackburn concerns Georgie and his wheelbarrow. He took it into his head one day to get some coal. Taking his wheelbarrow he reappeared in the village several hours later having been to Firesbey for it.

Henry Hand and his wife left the school on May 30th, 1922, to be succeeded by Mr. T. G. MI. Watson on June 5th when there were 77 children on roll. A supplementary teacher, Miss M Chapman, began duty shortly before this when Mr. Hand was ill. Her married name is Mrs. Wise and she is a sprightly 83-year-old living in Stickney. She attended school as a pupil as well as a teacher and remembers Henry Hand quite vividly.

The sister of Mrs. Wise, Mrs. Chatterton, remembers the East Lincolnshire the Singing Competitions, which took place at Spilsby. Under the expert guidance of Henry Hand, East Kirkby frequently won one or more first prizes, although apparently often ran them very close. Mrs. Chatterton met the Conductor’s daughter last year. She still keeps the baton with which her father conducted the massed choirs at the Grand Concert in the evening.

Rather than have about half of the children missing school when the fox hunt was in the area, Mr. Hand would arrange to begin school early in the morning, have about three hours off at lunch-time and re-assemble for afternoon school somewhat later than usual. However on one occasion H.M.I. arrived unexpectedly and school had to continue as usual throughout the day, despite the earlier start in the morning. No fox hunting that day!

When Henry Hand first taught at East Kirkby, William Hooton was a pupil. A number of boys had done something they should not have done and Mr. Hand asked those responsible to own up, offering 2d to those who did. No one owned up, but after a while William split on the culprits. He duly received his 2d, the guilty ones were punished and he acquired the nickname of "Two Penny Hooton". In later years this same boy became Director of Education for Lincoln.

Mrs. A. Lingard, formerly Blackburn, remembers that the Hands retired to Peachy Cottage, now the home of Mr. and Mrs. C Handson and family, although Mr. Hand lived less than two years after his retirement. November 7th, 1923 was a notable occasion in both East Kirkby Village and School. The windmill lost its five sails that day as a petrol engine was being installed. This features prominently in the records of the day as several boys were over anxious to see for themselves and climbed the "dangerous spiked iron fence in their eagerness to get to the mill", much to the ire of the Headmaster.

The County School Inspector visited, he school in April, 1'327, when Mr. Jones was Headmaster. "Taffy" was quite a character. However, the Inspector's concern was the heating system. A note in the logbook reads, "He noted the heating arrangements were not satisfactory—the room was full of smoke." Shortly afterwards the school closed for a week whilst a new heating system was installed.

During the summer of 1927 twenty-six new oak desks were delivered for use by the 1st, 2nd and 3rd Standards. They were brought from Spilsby by motor lorry, which had to make two journeys.

No doubt the School Dental Officer would have approved when, in 1931, four girls and four boys won two cases of New Zealand apples to share between them.

Later the same year 32- tons of coal and coke were delivered to the school. We can get a very clear picture of Evan Jones standing by whilst the carter laboriously weighed each sack full of coal, from the terse entry in the logbook reading ............ "The coal was weighed for me by the carter".

One of the difficulties in the way of continuous education in a rural village school such as this {s highlighted by reference to the records of 1937. During, the previous 12 months up to April 1937, 39 children out of 72 had left and a similar number entered the school. Thus, more than half the children had been at the school for less than a year. This imposed a very difficult task on those charged with the education of children in such a mobile community.

The Second World War brought many evacuees from the Grimsby area but little of note happened during this time

The number of children attending the school slowly fell 50 that by the end of the decade only 42 children were on roll

The close proximity of the R.A F bomber base made little difference to the school community until 1945. Then, during bombing up operations. An incident occurred which meant that a number of delayed action bombs could be expected to explode at any time. This happened at 5.45 p.m. and resulted in the Doston Road houses being evacuated and pretty well the whole village population spending the night in air raid shelters. A guard was placed on the main Spilsby to Nottingham road to prevent anyone entering the danger zone. The following morning the School bus contractor rang ,to ask for instructions. He was told not .o bring the seniors from Moorby and Revesby. A few of the local children did arrive however but Mr. Jones quickly sent them home again.

Fortunately the bombs were made safe during the day and the school returned to normal on the following day. It did cause quite a stir at the time and is something that the older inhabitants of the village still talk about today—over 20 years after the event.

The span o[ over 25 years with Evan Jones as Headmaster drew to a close on his retirement in ]951. John Legg succeeded him to be the first of five Head Teachers who have come to East Kirkby during a period of only 18 years. This compares with only 9 Head teachers over a span of 232 years prior to 1951.

During Mr. Jones' time the building of a Secondary School was first. proposed. It was in 1939 that the Governors first heard, from the Director of Education, of the proposed school. As we now know, due to the war, the building had to be deferred until 1953 when the Franklin County Secondary School, was brought into use taking all the children over 11 years old not catered for by King Edward VI Grammar School.

John L. Legg and his wife came to East Kirkby in 1951. They remained here for four years until 1955.

Jean Brown shares the doubtful distinction, with John Johnson, of remaining Head Teacher of the school for only one term. It was family illness, which caused her to move on so rapidly. She does, however have the privilege of being the first woman to be head of the school after over 240 years. Two other Headmistresses follow: Anne Powell for five years 1956 to 1961 and Barbara Watson 1962 to 1965.

The writer of these notes, Brian T. Shaw, was appointed to succeed Miss Watson from January 1966. Since then he has spent three very happy, if rather hectic, years with his wife and family in this friendly village at the foot of the Wolds.

And so the next chapter of Gregory and Margaret Croft's School commences. We hope it will be a long chapter, but much will depend on the results of the present survey of Primary Education throughout Lindsey and the proposals put forward.

We trust that the thoughtfulness and generosity of Gregory and Margaret Croft combined with the drive of the present Governors and Managers will enable their school to thrive for many years to come.


The pedigree from which the information of the parentage of Thomas Goodryke Bishop of Ely and 39th lord Chancellor of England comes from C.A.Goodricke History of the Goodrick Family, in the original document "Gregory Croft And Margaret Croft Foundation East Kirkby 16th May 1719, 250th anniversary" we find that the pedigree from the genealogist vol IV 1880 and Visitations of Lincolnshire 1562-4 by Robert Cooke says that Edward Goodrick in the spouse of Jane Williamson this is completely erroneous. As on numerous occasions in both documents I have changed the miss spelled family name to the modern day spelling of Goodrick I have never found any connection with the family Goodrich this family does exist in its own right and I would recommend at least a three or four generation confirmation for any research.



East Kirkby. Edited by Michael B Goodrick

This village in attractive setting under the southern slope of the Wolds has an old church of unusual charm, enhanced by fine restoration early this century.

Built of greensand and Ancestor stone, it is mainly l4th-century work; but the sturdy tower (with a mass dial by its doorway) has a two-light window from the close of the 13th century and a later embattled parapet, and the chancel has 15th-century windows below its modem clerestory. The east window is 14th-century and two others, fine examples of this period, are the east window of the south aisle and the west window of the nave.

Soaring arcades with slender pillars, roofs with a fine mass of timbering, and rich carving in stone and wood help to make the interior of the church even more attractive than the exterior.

In the north wall of the chancel are two things of note. One is a little two-light low-side window with a tiny quatrefoil in its head. The other is a remarkable recess looking rather like an Easter Sepulchre but actually, credence and a piscine combined. The bowl (with a drain) projects from a narrow shelf under a reredos richly carved with diaper of flowers, two branches of foliage, and canopied half-figures of three women, probably the three Mary’s, holding heart-shaped caskets; immediately above this recess are two trefoiled arches under a cornice of flowers. On this same wall, but outside, is a piscine belonging to a vanished chapel? In the south wall of the chancel is a finely traceried arch, perhaps part of a window.

Between the nave and chancel is a 15th-century oak screen enriched with delicate tracery. There are also remains of other medieval screens, which enclosed chantry chapels, and 18 old bench-ends with worn poppy heads. The fine font, with flowers and heads carved in its traceried bowl, is 15th-century.

The south aisle has a piscine, a 14th-century stone with heads carved at the corners (perhaps an altar bracket), and a floor stone with a graven cross in memory of Robert Sylkstone, who founded a chantry here 600 years ago. An old altar stone found in this aisle during the restoration now lies under the floor of the vestry, but can be seen by opening a trap door.

In a house near the church is a stone carved with the letters L.G. and the date 1544. It is thought to be a link with the Goodrick family and is a reminder that this village was the birthplace, towards the end of the 15th century, of Thomas Goodrick, Bishop of Ely and Lord Chancellor of England, and a staunch supporter of the Reformation.

Consecrated Bishop of Ely in 1534, Thomas Goodrick had a leading part in reforming ecclesiastical laws; he caused the new religion to be expounded in all the colleges and churches of Cambridge; and he shared in the translation of St John in the revision of the New Testament.

Four years after the accession of Edward the Sixth, he was made 39th Lord Chancellor. An able diplomat with several successful foreign missions to his credit, Goodrick had but newly returned from negotiating a marriage between Edward and the daughter of the French king. The Lord Chancellor had had an important share in the Prayer Book of the young king, and opened the Parliament, which made it the law of the land.

With the death of Edward, he acted on the council during the nine days of Lady Jane’s reign, and signed letters issued by them on her behalf. When he saw the cause was lost he at once resigned his seal, first having joined in the order of the Council to the Duke of Northumberland to disarm. His name was included in the list of persons for trial for high treason, but was struck out by Mary, partly, as a later historian says, because of his sacred character, and partly because of his insignificance.

Thomas Goodrick did homage to Mary at her coronation and was allowed to retain the see of Ely. He died at Somersham, Huntingdonshire, in May 1554 and was buried in Ely Cathedral.

(see notes at beginning).

Notes Goodricke East Kirkby con Lincs.

In 1490 to Jane Goodrick (Nee Williamson) and William Goodrick, a son, Thomas, was born, destined to become Lord Chancellor of England and Bishop of Ely.