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Records of the Archdeaconry of Brecon


Transcription: Bishop’s Visitation Inquiry; Questionnaire to vicar

Place name:





The Bishop of St Davids sent a questionnaire setting out ‘Articles of Inquiry’ to the vicar of Clodock prior to his visit to conduct confirmations in 1807. The printed questions and handwritten answers are marked Q and A in the transcription below. There is no questionnaire return from the churchwardens for this year.


[Extract from an introductory page to the questionnaire:]
Intending, by God’s permission, to visit my Diocese this Summer, and wishing to obtain information relative to the religious state of your Parish, and to the means of promoting your success in the Ministry of the Gospel, I request that you will return this Paper with answers to the several Queries therein contained…
I am, Reverend Sir, Yours faithfully, T St David’s

Q1: Are you the Incumbent or Curate?
A: Incumbent

Q2: If Incumbent, do you reside on your Cure? If not, where do you reside?
[No answer given]

Q3: Do you reside in the Parsonage House? If not, what is the reason?
A: I reside in ye Vicarage house at Longtown

Q4: If you are Curate, are you licenced? What is your Stipend? Where do you reside?
[No answer given]

Q5: Do you serve any other Cure?
A: Longtown Chappel

Q6: At what hours do you serve your Cure or Cures; and in what language?
A: Clodock eleven in ye morning five in ye evening, English

Q7: At what distance are your Churches or Chapels from your place of residence, and from each other?
A: Scarce a mile

Q8: Is there a Sunday School at your Cure or Cures? Is the Master or Mistress a Member of the Church of England? And do they take the Children constantly to Church?
A: There is no Sunday School

: Is there an appropriate School room? And do you take care, that no School whatever, be kept in the Church?
A: There is not a school kept in ye church

: Do you Catechize the Children of your Parish at Church throughout the year? Or do you confine this duty to any particular season, such as Lent?
A: They are catechised in Lent

Q11: For the better instruction of the Children, do you break the Catechism into short Questions? Do you deliver to them any exposition of its doctrines; and require the Children to give you Scripture proofs of them?
[No answer given]

Q12: Do you read the whole of one or other of the exhortations to the Sacrament of the Lord’s Supper, which you are directed by the Rubrick to read previous to the Sacrament-Sunday?
A: I read the whole of one of the Exhortations ye Sunday preceding ye Sacrament

Q13: Do you invite your Parishioners to attend you some Evening at Church, in the week preceding the Sacrament-Sundays, in the Spring and Summer months, to instruct them in the nature, obligations, and benefits of this duty.
A: They are frequently

Q14: Is the Church Service always performed in your Church or Chapel on Ash-Wednesday, Good-Friday and Ascension Day?
A: Ash Wednesday and Good Friday

Q15: If your Cure be in a Town, do you perform the Church Service on Saints’ days?
[No answer given]

Q16. Are the School Children of your Parish taken to Church by their Master or Mistress on Saints’ days, and the three great days mentioned in No. 14?
[No answer given]

Q17: Do you always, after the Prayer in time of war and tumult, read the Prayer appointed “by his Majesty’s special command” to be used during the present war?
A: I do read it

Q18: Do you read his Majesty’s Proclamation against Vice, and for the encouragement of Virtue, at least once a Quarter in your Church or Chapel?
A: I have none

Q19: Do you frequently admonish your Parishioners of the irreligious habits of sitting at Church during Prayers, instead of kneeling; of sitting during the reading or singing of the Psalm, etc?
A: They are often admonished

Q20: Have you taken any pains to introduce the use of simple congregational Psalmody in your Church or Chapel?
A: I have

Q21: Have you taken any pains, over and above the ordinary duties of your Parish, to remove the errors of Schism and Enthusiasm?
A: Repeatedly

Q22: What religious Tracts, and how many have you, within the last three Years, distributed in your Parish?
A: Such as have been sent me by ye Dean Rural

Q23: What kind of Tracts, and what subjects are most wanted in your Parish and Neighbourhood?
[No answer given]

Q24: Is there any Clerical meeting, Monthly or Quarterly, in your Deanery or Neighbourhood, in connection with the Society for promoting Christian Knowledge and Church Union in this Diocese? And do you attend it?
A: Not to my knowledge

Q25:  It there any other Clerical Society in your Deanery or Neighbourhood, meeting for the same purposes as the General Society of the Diocese? What are the days of meeting; and the rules?
A: None that I am acquainted with

Q26: Do you frequently by publick exhortation in your Sermons, and constantly by the example of your own family, excite your parishioners to the duty of daily family prayer?
A: I do

Q27: Are the Wardens regularly appointed every Year for your Church or Chapel?
A: Every Easter Monday by Vicar and Parishioners

Q28: Do you take pains to keep your Church or Chapel clean, light, and comfortable?
A: I could wish it so

A29: Are the window-shutters kept constantly open?
[No answer given]

Q30: Are there casements in the windows to open for the free passage of Air?
[No answer given]

Q31: Have you and your Wardens a Copy of the Table of Churchwardens’ Duties, distributed by the Society for promoting Christian Knowledge and Church Union in this Diocese?
A: I have them

Q32: Has your Benefice, or Benefices, received any augmentation of augmentations from Q. Anne’s bounty? of what value is the augmentation in each? of what does it consist? of land, or houses, or both? where are they situated? are they occupied by yourself, or are they let? and well taken care of?
A: Not since I have been incumbent

[Signed] Ed Sparkes Vicar of Clodock near Abergavenny


To see questionnaire returns from the vicar and churchwardens in 1799 click here, and for returns in 1804 click here.
For more on the contemporary setting, click here to see the research paper ‘A tithe dispute in Clodock parish’.


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Ref: nw_clo_4039