A History of the County of Middlesex: Volume 3, Shepperton, Staines, Stanwell, Sunbury, Teddington, Heston and Isleworth, Twickenham, Cowley, Cranford, West Drayton, Greenford, Hanwell, Harefield and Harlington. Originally published by Victoria County History, London, 1962.
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Some notes made by the rector in the parish register in 1683 provide the earliest information about the parish charities. (fn. 1) It was then stated that Lady Pointz had given £100 for poor widows and that Isaac Amy, Edward Doughty, (fn. 2) and others whose names were forgotten had given a few pounds each, presumably for the poor of the parish. In 1712 'Lady Letitia Pointz, once Coppinger' was said to have made her gift c. 1610. (fn. 3) In 1691 John, Lord Ossulston (d. 1695), gave £200 for apprenticing children or for other benefits to the poor. (fn. 4) The sums of money were for a while let out at interest to various persons, including Lord Ossulston. In 1692 the parishioners bought a house on the Bath Road to accommodate poor people and in the next year they used some of Lady Pointz's money to buy 6 acres of land. (fn. 5) During the 18th century the affairs of the parish charities are hard to disentangle, and by 1822 the poor-house bought in 1692 had 2 acres of land (including ½ a. allotted at the inclosure), called the Alms Orchard, while the 6 acres bought in 1693 seem to have been replaced by a similar amount of land in the possession of Lord Ossulston's charity. The insolvency of R. B. Gabriel (rector 1789-1805) and of another trustee a little later, together with difficulty in collecting rent at about the same time, had lost some of Lord Ossulston's endowment in money. (fn. 6)
At the inclosure of 1821 an allotment of 15 acres on the common was made to compensate the poor for the right of cutting furze and heath, and was used to distribute coals. (fn. 7) The poor-house was no doubt finally given up when the parish ceased to be responsible for poor relief in 1836, (fn. 8) and the site became absorbed in the Alms Orchard as part of the endowment of the parish charities. (fn. 9) During the early 19th century Lord Ossulston's charity was used to send children to local dame schools as well as for apprenticing. (fn. 10) It was later restricted to its original purpose and apprentices were still being put out in 1902. In 1914 it was said that most of the parents of suitable boys in Harlington were too poor to keep their sons during apprenticeship, and for some years afterwards the money was used to give Sunday school prizes, to buy boots for poor children, and for similar purposes. It has since been used for general charitable purposes with the other charities already mentioned, all of which were united in 1932 under the title of the Parochial Charities. In 1956-7 their joint income was about £145, of which £106 were used to give sums varying from 10s. to 35s. to poor persons, including widows, at Christmas. All the income now came from stock, the endowments in land having been sold. (fn. 11)
The note in the register of 1683 mentions ½ acre given by an unknown donor, and the Pork Acre, which provided 50s. a year for the bell-ringers. (fn. 12) The first of these endowments is not mentioned again, but the second survived, though it was later called the Pork Halfacre. It is not impossible that it derived from one of the half-acres devoted in 1547 to various church purposes. (fn. 13) As early as 1673 the bell-ringers' money was used to ring the bells on 5 November, (fn. 14) and by 1822 the ringers' pork dinner on 5 November was traditional. (fn. 15) The land was sold in 1879 and the income of the proceeds, which was £10 5s. in 1959, was then still, after an intermission during the Second World War, being put to its old use. (fn. 16)
Robert Cooper, the rector who made the notes in the register already mentioned, made another in 1727 to the effect that he had given ½ acre to the parish clerk, who was to maintain Cooper's monument in the church-yard. This work was not being done by 1822, but the charity has continued to be paid. The land was sold in 1885. The income of the proceeds was £2 10s. in 1959 and was paid to the clerk. (fn. 17)