Page images


and Upton Noble have been suspended for want of resident teachers, it is hoped they will ere long be renewed. The committee have great satisfaction in reporting the prosperous state of a new school at Gare Hill, consisting of fifty-seven scholars; viz. thirty-nine children and eighteen adults. The latter are anxious to learn, very attentive, have made considerable progress, and are about to commence writing. The children are also very regular and diligent, and a most remarkable and pleasing difference has been observed since the establishment of the school in the morals and habits of the inhabitants. The new school at Freckle Street consists of eighteen children, and with the last mentioned, is at present wholly conducted by the valuable labours of superintendents from Frome. The school at Cranmore contains forty children and four teachers; the school at Awkridge thirty-eight children and five teachers; the school at Kilmington is at present superintended and conducted by the clergyman of that village. At Lullington a small school is assisted by the Union, consisting of two teachers and fourteen children; their number has been lessened by the establishment of another school in the place. A school at West Camel, near Ilchester, established by the persevering zeal and diligence of the clerk of the parish has received a supply of books from your committee, who have considered that such aid may be essentially useful to schools, situated beyond the bounds of their personal superintendence, and are no way inconsistent with the designs of the society, when the existence and usefulness of such schools are properly attested. The school at West Camel, (which is thirty miles from Frome,) is stated to consist of forty scholars with two teachers.

The following recapitulation will give the society a view of the present extent of village instruction, to which its labours have either given rise or afforded assistance.

[blocks in formation]


[merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][ocr errors][merged small][merged small][ocr errors][merged small][merged small][ocr errors]

The Sunday Schools in the town of Frome, connected with the Union, but not deriving any assistance from its funds at present, consist of the following numbers,

Rook Lane meeting........


Sheppards Barton meeting.. 16
Badcox Lane meeting.....
Methodist chapel.....


Zion chapel....


First, Spelling Books...
Second ditto..

23 adults.






21 adults.



The following books have been issued by the Depositary to the village schools since the last annual meeting.








First, Watts's Catechisms
Second ditto.....


Tracts as rewards.
Watts's Divine Songs..



Part of these books have been given and part sold at reduced prices.


Dear Sir,

HAVING had the pleasure of being present at the last quarterly meeting of the Stroud Sunday School Union on Monday the 8th of January, and of witnessing the cheerful acquiescence of its members to carry into effect some proposed arrangements for ex tending the blessings of sabbath instruction into surrounding villages; I could not deny myself the gratification of sending you the particulars of the success which has since attended their exertions in the Union. After the reports from the different Schools had been presented and read by the chairman, the Rev. Mr. Hawkins, (through whose persevering and disinterested labours in the formerly unenlightened village of Eastcombs, near 300 children are now taught every Sabbath,) communicated the result of his inquiries, in company with two other friends, into the state of several villages in a circle of about ten miles; from which it appeared that but few of the poor in those villages could read, that as a natural consequence thereof, the Sabbath was generally profaned, and when the churches were open comparatively few attended. Happily the prejudices of the higher circles against the instruction of the poor had prepared the minds of these poor people and made them anxious for instruction. Considering that instruction would not make them less useful as servants, or less

capable of discharging the duties of relative and social life.Their anxiety for the establishment of Sunday Schools induced Mr. H. to promise the villagers to represent their situation to the committee and members of the Stroud Union, and if it met their approval and co-operation, to send them assistance as early as possible.

It is almost unnecessary for me to add, that the meeting were of one heart and mind in determining that their cries for help should be attended to immediately; and after unanimously thanking Mr. H. and friends for their benevolent inquiries, made arrangements for a regular supply of teachers from their body.

Encouraged by their ready co-operation, Mr. H.'s friends opened a school at Colesbourn on the following Lord's day week; first Sabbath they had 44; second, 55; third, 66; the parents of the children appear particularly thankful. A respectable clothier here offered his services as a teacher; the clergyman has endeavoured to persuade the person, in whose house the school meets, to dismiss the children; it has been without success. The inhabitants having expressed great anxiety to hear the Gospel preached to them, Mr. H. has licensed a barn for the purpose, and their attention is delightful.

At Winstone, through which place the teachers passed on their way to Colesbourn, the inhabitants having repeatedly requested for a Sunday School, the friends at Stroud have complied with their wishes, and last Lord's day a school was opened, 60 children enrolled, and 100 expected.

At Miserdine the poor were equally anxious, and another Sunday School has been established, though at the distance of nearly a mile; the opinion of a person of influence having prevented the teachers getting accommodation in the village. A considerable number of children are expected in addition.

I have the satisfaction of adding, that from the reports from the different schools in the Union, the number of children which by the last report consisted of 3635, and 453 teachers, remains pretty nearly the same, though the unfavourable time of the year might reasonably have allowed a deduction, and also of expressing my opinion, that through the benevolent exertions of the Rev. Mr. Hawkins and the Rev. J. Burder, their truly active secretary, aided by the zeal and love of the teachers, whose concern for the best interests of the rising generation is of no common kind; all the surrounding villages will, ere long, have to rejoice that the darkness has passed away for ever, and that the true light has not only dawned, but shines, with brilliant lustre; and of there being at least an addition of 600 children to the above stated number of those who, in early life, are taught to sing the praises of the Redeemer, many of whom, we hope, will be the joy, crown, and rejoicing of those, who are labouring in this honourable employ. I am, &c.

Bath, March 15, 1816.

[merged small][ocr errors]

F. E. T.



A PUBLIC meeting was held at Lady Huntingdon's chapel last year, when it was stated on unquestionable authority, that these useful institutions were but as yet in their infancy, and that in some neighbouring villages the light of Sunday Schools had not yet arisen; and it appearing the best means of remedying those difficulties, which had hitherto impeded their establishment, would be the formation of a Sunday School Union, it was then concluded.

Impressed with the importance of the objects proposed, your committee accepted the appointment, and cheerfully undertook to use their best exertions, and without detaining their friends any longer, they hasten to communicate the result of their labours, and hope ere long their Sunday School system, which has but just risen above the horizon, will shine yet more and more, till in their respective neighbourhoods the means of religious knowledge shall be generally diffused, and mental ignorance completely chased away. Since the formation of this Union a Sunday School has been opened at

Southborough, under the friendly superintendence of the Rev. Mr. Gough, assisted by several friends, by whose persevering exertions, aided by the funds of the Union, ninety-six children are under tuition.

Groombridge. A school was opened by Mr. Cooke, and consists of seventy-six children and four adults; it is now under the superintendence of the Rev. Mr. Adams, whose indefatigable attention merits the warmest commendation.

Matfield. A short time since a school was opened under the care of the Rev. Messrs. Russell and Gladwish: the prospect of usefulness is truly cheering; one hundred and twenty-four chil dren having been already admitted with every prospect of an increase; the readiness and pleasure which the teachers manifest in attending to the moral and spiritual improvement of the chil dren is truly gratifying.

Rotherfield. Another school has been opened, and which, in point of members, has far exceeded the expectations of the Rev. Mr. Hatterel, Mr. Babington, and friends, who have kindly undertaken to attend to their instruction, consisting already of one hundred and thirty children, with the probability of an increase. [The committee regret the Sunday School in the church is not in so flourishing a state as formerly, but hope a friendly rivalry will excite the managers of each school to fresh exertions in a neighbourhood rather populous ]

Yalding. A few weeks since a school was opened, and has every prospect of realizing the best wishes of the friends of youth; the parents and children attending at its commencement

with apparent cheerfulness, and already consists of one hundred and twelve children. The Rev. Mr. Russell, the pastor, Mr. Austin and friends are indefatigable in their attentions.

Wadhurst. The friends of the rising generation in the neighbourhood opened a school a short time since, which consisted of one hundred and eighteen children; their local circumstances rendering the countenance of the Union necessary, your committee cheerfully sent them the aid of a few useful books, and bave the pleasure of reporting it has since increased to one hundred and sixty children.

Tonbridge. In addition to the Sunday School already established, which consisted of sixty-two children, another has been opened, wherein sixty-four children are instructed, under the care of the Rev. Mr. Martin and friends, by whose unremitted attention a further increase is confidently anticipated; the friends of youth in the establishment have a school which your committee have heard with pleasure consists of one hundred and five children.

Tonbridge Wells. There are two schools under the benevolent care of the Rev. Mr. Benson and a committee of ladies; consisting of about one hundred and seventy children.

Tonbridge. At Lady Huntingdon's chapel, under the superintendence of the Rev. Mr. Finley, one hundred and ten children are continually receiving that instruction, which their present and everlasting welfare renders indispensable.

Tonbridge. At Vale Royal Chapel, your committee have the pleasure of reporting a considerable increase in the number of children, and still hope the persevering exertions of the Rev. Mr. Martin and friends, will be crowned with success, it now consists of one hundred and sixty children.

Penshurst. A national school has been established, in which about forty children are receiving daily instruction, and which number it is hoped will be much increased.

Penshurst. At an adjoining chapel, under the friendly care of Mr. and Mrs. Gorham, about forty children are instructed on the Sabbath, their attention and improvement is pleasing.

Bidborough. The Rev. Mr. Brock obligingly inspects and feels anxious for the improvement of thirty-eight children, and your committee hope his best wishes for their spiritual improvement will be realized.

Speldhurst. The Rev. Mr. Gordon superintends a school, consisting of about seventy children, whose improvement it is hoped will meet his sincere desire.

Ashurst. The Rev. Mr. Capper had established a school, but local difficulties have for the present interfered, which your committee hope will be but of a temporary continuance.

Hartfield. About eighty children are receiving instruction under the care of the Rev. Mr. Williams.

Crowborough. A school, it is hoped, will be shortly established.

« PreviousContinue »