Diary of Rev Edward Stevens

1874, November 29, Sunday 

Storm last night. Calm and mild this morning. Walked to Sibford this morning to services. Gave notice of service next Wednesday evening. Very heavy showers during the day. Walked back to Swalcliffe this evening.

Canon Payne lost his wife about the beginning of the year, and feels it very keenly. It seems impossible to get a smile out of him or to take interest in anything.

1874, November 30, Monday

Walked from Swalcliffe to Sibford. Examined Loggin Allotments and spent an hour in the school. Walked back to Swalcliffe. After lunch Canon Payne drove me to Banbury and I returned to Oxford.

1874, December 1, Tuesday

De Teissier asked for leave to go to London tomorrow till Saturday. Rosa and I called on Rev R F Heath and his sister and on the Misses Hooper. I afterwards called on Hughes at Jesus College.

1874, December 2, Wednesday 

A lady called about a French pupil, but nothing came of it. I drove to Sibford from Banbury taking new lamps for church with me, of the “Silver pattern”. It was very cold. Divine Service at 7pm. Special for God’s blessing on Missions. I preached ex tempore. The new lamps give a soft, diffused and pleasant light in the church. Received £4.5 from Miss Macmaster for examining her pupils’ exercises. Put up at Mrs Elley’s.

1874, December 3, Thursday

Paid many visits in Sibford, among them to William Poulton, carpenter, who in answer to my request said he should not remove his timber from the front of the church till he was forced. His wife also was very rude and even passionate and tearful about it. “I a’ allays lent water for the church and lent a hammer too when they was decoratin’ for Harvest Festival, and I a’ done a good deal like o’ that for the church I ‘ave. But now I ain’t a goin’ to do no more. When you preached your first sermon in the church I did say I thought as how we’d got a nice good gentleman at last for a clergyman, but now you no sooner comes into the town than you wants to take the bread out of our mouths you does,” said she, whimpering.

“No, Mrs Poulton, I don’t want to take the bread out of your mouths but I want to take your timber away from the front of the church, where you have no right to put it and where it constitutes a nuisance in more ways than one. I would rather you did so at my friendly request than at any compulsion. But you will have to do it.” I left them still talking.

Returned to Oxford.

Click on an entry date to view an image of the original diary page.

Read about the Rev Edward Stevens here.