Hospitals: Lambourn

Page 95

A History of the County of Berkshire: Volume 2. Originally published by Victoria County History, London, 1907.

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John Isbury, who died in 1485, desired by his will to found a chantry in the parish church, in conjunction with a hospital or almshouse. His son of the same name carried out his father's intentions. A hospital was built on the north side of the church for ten poor men, six to be nominated by the Warden of New College, Oxford, and four by the founder's heirs. These bedesmen were to use the chapel of the Holy Trinity, on the south side of the parish church, for their devotions, kneeling round the tomb (in the centre) of John Isbury, their founder. The original pension was 8d. a week, with clothes, and allowance of fuel and corn. The chantry priest was to govern the almshouse and pay the inmates their stipend. The annual value of the almshouse, as separate from the stipend of the chantry priest, was declared at £17 13s. 4d. This hospital was technically dissolved in 1 Edward VI as 'superstitious'; but sufficient influence was brought to bear to cause its reestablishment by Act of Parliament in 31 Elizabeth. (fn. 1)

There is a cast of the seal of this hospital at the British Museum. (fn. 2) The Holy Trinity is represented under a heavy canopy, with a kneeling figure of the founder and his arms (bendy, wavy of six) in base. Legend:—



  • 1. Ashmole, Antiq. of Berks. ii, 244; Lysons, Berks. 309–10; Coll. and Chant. Cert. Nos. 8, 51.
  • 2. B.M. lviii, 52.