A History of the County of Cambridge and the Isle of Ely: Volume 10, Cheveley, Flendish, Staine and Staploe Hundreds (North-Eastern Cambridgeshire). Originally published by Victoria County History, London, 2002.
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CHARITIES FOR THE POOR.
In 1338 the preceptor of Chippenham spent £2 on giving the poor peas and beans, distributed three days a week. (fn. 1) In 1582 Sir Thomas Revett left to the Mercers' Company £200 to provide two parishes, including Chippenham, with 13 penny loaves for the poor in each parish every Sunday. (fn. 2) Nothing was distributed c. 1763-9, but in 1770 the Chippenham poor received 19 penny loaves weekly. (fn. 3) In 1839 and 1863-4 Revett's charity paid out £4 7s. in bread, and in 1868 it paid yearly for, or contributed towards, the cost of 489 halfpenny loaves. (fn. 4) In 1994 the charity paid out £25 to the poor. (fn. 5)
In 1679 Thomas Delamere and John Francis gave 16½ a. for the poor of Chippenham. (fn. 6) It comprised 15½ a. of arable and 1 a. of pasture in 1721, with two houses c. 1724-77. (fn. 7) In 1777 the rent amounted to £5. (fn. 8) At inclosure in 1791 the charity was allotted 10 a. tithe free, which in 1839 was rented for £8. (fn. 9) In 1992 the income of £530 was divided equally between 53 poor villagers. (fn. 10)
By his will of 1726 Lord Orford charged his manor with an annuity of £10 for the poor. (fn. 11) In 1786 it was recorded that an unknown donor had left £60 for the poor. That gift was known as Tetsall's charity, possibly named after the farmer John Tetsall (fl. 1712), in whose hands it may have been. (fn. 12) In 1839 it paid out £2 8s. (fn. 13) In the early 1990s Lord Orford's charity had an annual income of c. £50, and Tetsall's of £14. (fn. 14)
Between 1844 and 1872 those four village charities were combined to support a coal and clothing club run by the vicar, Augustus Tharp. (fn. 15) Supplemented by annual gifts from the members of his family, and from residents of Chippenham Hall, the club raised c. £80 in 1866 and 1872. Half was funded from the charities, and expenditure was divided equally between clothing and coals.
In 1765 George Montgomerie bequeathed £100 for poor householders not receiving 'alms' and £10 for the poor on relief. The money was not paid in 1786, and had apparently been lost by 1837. (fn. 16)