Wrockwardine Wood: Local government and public services

A History of the County of Shropshire: Volume 11, Telford. Originally published by Victoria County History, London, 1985.

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A P Baggs. D C Cox. Jessie McFall. P A Stamper. A J L Winchester, 'Wrockwardine Wood: Local government and public services', in A History of the County of Shropshire: Volume 11, Telford, (London, 1985) pp. 330-331. British History Online https://www.british-history.ac.uk/vch/salop/vol11/pp330-331 [accessed 28 May 2024].

A P Baggs. D C Cox. Jessie McFall. P A Stamper. A J L Winchester. "Wrockwardine Wood: Local government and public services", in A History of the County of Shropshire: Volume 11, Telford, (London, 1985) 330-331. British History Online, accessed May 28, 2024, https://www.british-history.ac.uk/vch/salop/vol11/pp330-331.

Baggs, A P. Cox, D C. McFall, Jessie. Stamper, P A. Winchester, A J L. "Wrockwardine Wood: Local government and public services", A History of the County of Shropshire: Volume 11, Telford, (London, 1985). 330-331. British History Online. Web. 28 May 2024, https://www.british-history.ac.uk/vch/salop/vol11/pp330-331.

In this section


Wrockwardine Wood was part of the manor, and until 1884 the civil parish, of Wrockwardine. In spite of its isolation it seems to have been treated exactly as the other constituent townships, although special journeys had to be made to relieve the poor. The township, later parish, was in Wellington poor-law union 1836- 1930. (fn. 1)

Wrockwardine Wood C.P. was formed in 1884, as part of Wellington rural sanitary district, becoming a ward of Oakengates urban district on its creation in 1898. (fn. 2) Wrockwardine Wood C.P. was abolished in 1934 when it became part of Oakengates C.P. (fn. 3)

The Granville hospital, Gower Street, was built for its employees by the Lilleshall Co. It opened in 1873 but by 1879 a smaller, eight-bed building in Albion Street had been provided. An ambulance service was added to the hospital's facilities in 1917. (fn. 4)


The inhabitants of Wrockwardine Wood appear at times to have used churches and chapels of ease nearer than the parish church 7 km. away. (fn. 5) In the early 19th century the success of Methodism in the area apparently stimulated Joshua Gilpin, vicar of Wrockwardine 1782- 1828 (fn. 6) and a friend of John Fletcher, the Methodist vicar of Madeley, to introduce cottage lectures in Wrockwardine Wood. They were initially given by Matthew Wishton and R. W. Kyle, curate for Wrockwardine Wood, in a cottage in Furnace Lane. (fn. 7) The National school, built near the glassworks and opened in 1831, was licensed for preaching and held up to 250 adults. (fn. 8) Wrockwardine Wood church, built next to the school, was consecrated in 1833. It was paid for by public subscription of £990 and grants totalling £600. (fn. 9)

Wrockwardine Wood became a separate ecclesiastical parish in 1834. The patronage was the Crown's until 1887 when it was conveyed to the bishop of Lichfield, the patron in 1982. (fn. 10) The living formally became a rectory in 1868, although from the acquisition of the great tithes in 1847 Reginald Yonge frequently signed himself rector. (fn. 11) In 1861 the southern part of the parish containing part of the Nabb and Pain's Lane was transferred to the new consolidated chapelry later known as St. George's. (fn. 12)

The incumbent of Wrockwardine Wood enjoyed a stipend of £81 c. 1834. G. L. Yate, vicar of Wrockwardine, had given up the small tithes, other offerings, and pew rents from Wrockwardine Wood to endow the living. (fn. 13) By 1856 the value of the living had risen to c. £140, augmentations totalling £1,000 having been made from Queen Anne's Bounty to match private subscriptions and other grants in 1835, 1836, 1842 (two), and 1849. Additionally, lands worth £300 were given by Yate in 1842 and £770 by subscribers in 1849. (fn. 14) In 1847 Queen Anne's Bounty bought the great tithes that belonged to Mrs. Cludde of Orleton, on behalf of the incumbent. (fn. 15) By 1871 the living was worth c. £200 and by 1884 £230 including £89 in tithe rent charges and £9 in pew rents and surplice fees. There were also 4 a. of glebe, (fn. 16) whose rent was estimated in 1887 to be worth £10. (fn. 17) By 1900 the living's value had fallen to £180; it remained at that level in 1917. By 1932 it had risen to £360. (fn. 18)

In 1835 G. L. Yate acquired a third interest in the glassworks manager's house, the rest being bought in 1843 after the works had closed. (fn. 19) Profits from R. W. Kyle's Sermons Doctrinal and Practical (1837) were devoted to the house fund. (fn. 20) Until the purchase of the house the incumbents had apparently not resided near the church: Kyle lived in Trench in 1837 and Henry Bagnall lived in Priorslee in 1843. (fn. 21) The incumbents of Wrockwardine Wood seem usually to have had a curate. (fn. 22)

In 1843 there were two Sunday services, with others at Christmas and on Good Friday, communion being given four times a year to 20 parishioners. On Census Sunday 1851 44 adults worshipped in the afternoon and 82 in the evening. (fn. 23) In 1889, in the wake of their building restorations, Gilbert Todd (rector 1874-92) and his curate were attempting to improve the character of the services and they formed a surpliced choir. (fn. 24) A bell of 1891 was hung in the tower. (fn. 25)

In 1884 the Nabb mission was built on land given by the Lilleshall Co., the building costs being raised through subscriptions. The iron building was enlarged in 1892 to provide 170 sittings. (fn. 26)

The church of HOLY TRINITY was built in 1833 to a design by Samuel and Thomas Smith of Madeley. (fn. 27) Initially it consisted of a west tower, nave, and chancel, of red brick with some stone dressing. Of plain Georgian design with roundheaded windows, it had a large west gallery and seated 610, 430 seats being free. (fn. 28) Much of the initial seating was in square pews, which were replaced by benches in 1889 when considerable alterations, designed by Joseph Farmer of Shifnal, were made. (fn. 29) Between 1876 and 1890 the chancel was enlarged and an apse added, also a vestry and organ chamber. In 1902 four sandstone balls surmounting the tower were replaced by pinnacles. (fn. 30) In 1936 a choir vestry was built on the west side of the tower. In 1970-1 extensive repairs to the church were necessary after a fire. (fn. 31)

The registers are complete from 1833.

Land was given to extend the churchyard in 1897, 1921, and 1938, the last ground being consecrated in 1943. The churchyard was levelled in 1967. (fn. 32)


  • 1. Above, Wrockwardine, Local Govt. and Public Services; below, Church; P.O. Dir. Salop. (1856), 154; Kelly's Dir. Salop. (1929), 328.
  • 2. 14th Ann. Rep. Local Govt. Bd. pp. xlvii, 191, 204; V.C.H. Salop. ii. 229; Kelly's Dir. Salop. (1900), 295.
  • 3. Cartlidge, Usc-con, 111.
  • 4. Gale and Nicholls, Lilleshall Co. 74; G. M. James, 'Here be Dragons': Brief Glimpse into Hist. of St. Geo.'s, Telford [1982], 19-20 (copy in S.P.L.).
  • 5. Williams, Wrockwardine Wood, 12; Lilleshall par. reg. (transcripts in S.P.L.).
  • 6. L.J.R.O., B/A/1/24, p. 112.
  • 7. Williams, op. cit. 12.
  • 8. Below, Educ.; Lich. Dioc. Regy., bps.' reg. I, pp. 687-91, 695, 702-6; S.R.O. 3916/1/2, no. 61; ibid. /1/6.
  • 9. From Inc. Ch. Bldg. Soc. and Eccl. Com.: Lich. Dioc. Regy., bps.' reg. I, pp. 702-6.
  • 10. Ibid. Q, pp. 296-301; Lich. Dioc. Dir. (1982), 107.
  • 11. Lich. Dioc. Regy., bps.' reg. I, p. 700; R, p. 274; Williams, Wrockwardine Wood, 15.
  • 12. Above, Lilleshall, Churches.
  • 13. Rep. Com. Eccl. Revenues [67], pp. 508-9, H.C. (1835), xxii; R. W. Kyle, Sermons Doctrinal and Practical (1837), p. xii.
  • 14. C. Hodgson, Q. Anne's Bounty (2nd edn.), pp. ccxx, ccxxii, ccxxx, ccxcv; suppl. pp. xviii, lxvii.
  • 15. R. M. Grier, John Allen (1889), 172-3; above, Wrockwardine, Man. and Other Est.
  • 16. E. Cassey & Co. Dir. Salop. (1871), 410; S.R.O. 3916/1/26.
  • 17. Return of Glebe Land, 1887, H.C. 307, p. 68 (1887), lxiv.
  • 18. Kelly's Dir. Salop. (1900), 1000; (1917), 302; (1926), 333; Crockford (1932), 177.
  • 19. Williams, Wrockwardine Wood, 13-14.
  • 20. Kyle, Sermons, title page.
  • 21. Ibid. p. xvi; S.R.O. 3916/1/8, no. 44.
  • 22. Williams, Wrockwardine Wood, 20.
  • 23. P.R.O., HO 129/365, no. 78.
  • 24. Salopian Shreds & Patches, ix. 134-5; Lich. Dioc. Regy., benefice and inst. bk. 1868-1900, pp. 30, 93.
  • 25. H. B. Walters, Ch. Bells of Salop. (Oswestry, 1915), 285.
  • 26. Kelly's Dir. Salop. (1885), 1000; (1900), 296; Gale and Nicholls, Lilleshall Co. 53.
  • 27. H. M. Colvin, Biog. Dict. Brit. Architects, 1600-1840 (1978), 762.
  • 28. S.R.O. 3916/1/8, no. 44.
  • 29. Salopian Shreds & Patches, ix. 134.
  • 30. Kelly's Dir. Salop. (1900), 295-6; Williams, Wrockwardine Wood, 15.
  • 31. Kelly's Dir. Salop. (1929), 328; (1941), 319; Williams, op. cit. 17-19.
  • 32. Lich. Dioc. Regy., bps.'reg. U, pp. 275, 312-13; W, pp. 46, 639; X, p. 66; Williams, op. cit. 19.