Alphington Church Rectors

William de Staneway, Dean of Exeter, was collated by Bishop Bronescombe in July of 1263. He died in 1268 and the name of his successor is unknown.

On 29th June 1278 John, possibly de Exonia, the Treasurer of Exeter Cathedral became Rector and the patron was Sir John Neville, Knt.

The next record shows John of Exeter was admitted in November 1280 on the presentation of the Prior and Convent of St Nicholas.

Stephen de Brawoda was recorded as becoming Rector in 1294.

Other records show Hugh Norman being admitted on 12th June 1310 on the presentation of the Prior and Convent of St Nicholas, Exeter.

Then John de Oxon resigning on 12th May 1317.

On 14th March 1317-8 Robert de Halstede was admitted and the patron was Hugh de Neville, Knt.

Roger de Gardino was admitted on 28th March 1349 the patron was Hugh de Neville, Knt.

James de Cobham was admitted 19th February 1361, it is possible that the patron was Hugh Segrave. James de Cobham exchanged Alphington Rectory for Sampford Courtenay, with the consent of his Patron, Hugh de Seagrave, in 1361 or 1362. Shortly after in 1382 High de Segrave exchanged the manor of Alphington with Newenham Courcy, later known as Newenham Courtenay, in Oxfordshire with Sir Philip Courtenay of Powderham. The Courtenay family held the advowsen of Alphington until the beginning of the 16th Century.

One record shows a William Trenewy as the next Rector and upon his death John Laverock was admitted on 18th October 1390. The patron was the Prior and Convent of St Nicholas.

Reginald Moun occurs on 3rd January 1391. He was granted licence of non-residence to study at Oxford for two years from 12th August 1395 and again for one year from 1st August 1398. His name of Moun was an alias and he was also known as Reginald Baron.

Reginald died on 3rd December 1398 and Roger Sare was admitted on 3rd December 1398, the patron was Robert Cary.

On William's death Richard Courtenay LLB was admitted on 6th April or 7th May 1403, the patron was Sir Peter Courtenay. Richard was the eldest son and heir of Sir Philip Courtenay of Powderham and Ann Wake and grandson of Sir Hugh Courtenay 2nd [or 1st]?? Earl of Devon and Margaret Bohun. In his youth Richard was noted for his handsom appearance but he was always delicate and he grew very stout. He was a close friend and trusted counsellor of King Henry V and despite medical warnings he accompanied the king on the 1415 campaign. At the siege of Harfleur Richard succumbed to a contagion and he died on the 15th September. His body was brought back to England and buried behind the High Altar near to the Confessor's shrine in Westminster Abbey.

John Pleystowe was admitted on 28th December 1403 on the resignation of Richard Courtenay, the patron was Sir Peter Courtenay.

Geofrey Barger was admitted on 6th July 1415. He exchanged with John Mathew of Broadclist on 6th July 1419, the Patron was Edward Courtenay the Earl of Devon.

Richard Robert was admitted on 17th March 1434 or 1435, the patron was Thomas Courtenay the Earl of Devon.

On Richard Robert's death John Major MA was admitted on 10th December 1440, the patron was Thomas Courtenay.

On John Major's death John Corbrig was admitted on 1st July 1447, once again the patron was Thomas Courtenay.

John Corbrig died during the same year and Thomas Banke LLB was admitted on 17th November 1447. Thomas Courtenay was the patron.

Martin Pitt occurs as Rector in a Subsidy on 14th February 1450.

Records then show John Rook becoming Rector in 1456 and Hugh Oldham STP in 1493.

George Norwich was admitted on 9th May 1505 and the patron was Sir Edward Courtenay the Earl of Devon.

On George Norwich's death Robert Clerk MA was admitted on 29th November 1512, the patroness was Countess Katharine, Countess of Devon.

On Robert Clerk's death Ralph Gerens MA was admitted on 12th May 1513 or 1514, Countess Katharine was the patroness.

On Ralph Gerens' death in April 1529 Robert Dade alias Ap Madocke was admitted on 2nd May 1529, the patron was Henry Courtenay Knight of the Garter, Marques of Exeter, Earl of Devon and Lord of Okehampton.

William Oldreve occurs as Rector in 1536.

On William Oldreve's death Richard Bagnall was admitted on 20th October 1558 the patrons were Sir John Pollard and Sir Hugh Pollard. Richard was also Rector of St Peter's Oakfield from 1554 until 1566. The Bishop of Exeter wrote a report in Latin in 1561 and he said of Bagnall, "he is not a graduate. He is a Canon and Prebendary of Exeter".

On Richard Bagnall's death John Hopkins was admitted on 15th November 1566.

Records show George Whylingham became Rector in 1578 and upon his death Thomas Lyndge MA was admitted on 16th October 1587 the patron was William the Earl of Bath.

On Thomas Lyndge's death John Doughty STB was admitted on 25th July 1593, the patron was William the Earl of Bath.

On John Doughty's death Thomas Alden MA a scholar of St. John's College, Cambridge, was admitted on 14th May 1629, the patron was Bartholomew Parr. He married Ann, the daughter of John Doughty, on 23rd January 1627 or 1628. He was buried on 17th September 1659.

When Thomas Alden resigned 10th February 1637 he was succeeded by his son John Alden.

John was evicted in 1655 and an independent, Nathaniel Hayden, intruded but John was restored to his rectory in 1660.

When John Alden resigned James Smith STP was admitted on 18th October 1662 and inducted 1663, the patrons were William Lynn Esq. and Richard Forard Gent. James was born at Marston Mottaine, Befordshire the son of Rector Thomas Smith. James was made Rector of King's Nympton, Devon in 1639. James died 20th or 22nd June 1667 at Alphington Rectory and was buried at King's Nympton Church, Devon near his first wife.

Ralf Peyton MA was admitted on 24th July 1667 and was presented by William Lynn Esq and Richard Forard Gent. acting for Rachel, Countess of Bath.

On Ralph/Ralf Peyton's death John Sheldon MA was admitted on 12th March 1669, the patrons were William Lynn Esq. and Richard Forard, Gent. John was buried on 2nd December 1676.

Thomas Mathews was admitted on 22nd February 1676/1677, the patroness was Rachael, Countess of Bath. Thomas was buried on 15th August 1712.

John Pitman yeoman of Cutteridge purchased the advowson of Alphington in 1700 from the Countess of Bath. His second son was christened in Alphington on 25th November 1685 and he suceeded Thomas Mathew as Rector of Alphington on 29th December 1712. The patron was Hugh or Richard Carew of Barley, his father's trustee. John married Dorothy, daughter of Samuel Walkey of Alphington at Bishop's Teignton on 7th October 1714. John was buried on 8th or 18th May 1739.

Charles Bidgood MA was admitted on 8th September 1739, the patron was John Pitman of Baliol College, Oxford. Charles was buried at Rockbear on 1st April 1797.

Revd. John Pitman's son, also John, was born in Alphington and christened on 5th May 1718. He married Mary Newte, the daughter of Samuel Newte (Rector of Tidcombe, Nr Tiverton), in Bath Abbey on 10th November 1749. When Charles Bidgood resigned John Pitman was admitted on 25th March 1743 on the presentation of Samuel Walkey, Gent. of Lincolns Inn, London. John became Rector of Poltimore on 20th November 1756 and therefore, resigned his Alphington living. However he was re-admitted on his own presentation on 17 February 1757. He died at Alphington on 2nd February 1768 aged 50 and was buried on 4th February 1768. His wife, Mary, died in Exeter on 19th November 1813 aged 91 as recorded in the register but the memorial in Alphington Church states she was 93.

Samuel Newte the younger MA, the eldest son of Samuel Newte Rector of Tidcombe, was admitted on 8th August 1768, the patron was his aunt Mary Pitman, widow, her maiden name Newte of Alphington. Samuel died unmarried on 3rd December 1772 aged 28.

Arthur Culme MA was admitted in 1773 on the presentation of Mary Pitman.

On Arthur Culme's death John Andrew BA was admitted on 16th October 1776, the patroness was Mary Pitman. John married Isabella the daughter of John Pitman in 1775. He was buried at Powderham on 9th July 1799 aged 49.

The advowson of Alphington had been sold to Jane and William Ellicombe for £5,200 in 1780 and William Ellicombe BA was admitted on 11th July of that year, the patroness was Jane Ellicombe widow of Stoke Canon. William was buried 27th April 1831 aged 86.

Richard Ellicombe MA, the 5th son of William and Hannah, was admitted on 14th May 1831. The patron was Sir Stafford Henry Northcott. He was christened on 23rd March 1780 at St. Sidwell Exeter. Richard Ellicombe married Eliza Swete in Kenton on the 6th April 1820. William Ellicombe (Richard's father) was christened on 3rd April 1745 at Stoke Canon and his father was Richard Ellicombe. William married Hannah Rous on 2nd March 1773 at Saint Martin, Exeter. A marriage record from Clyst St George the 'Revd. William Rous Ellicombe of Alphington and Esther Harriett Isacc of this Parish, by License, 26 Mar 1805, by me, Richard Ellicombe Curate., Wit: Rev. Richard Rous, Susanna Spicer'.

William Butterfield was born on 24th March 1799 and christened on 2nd June 1799 at Bingley, Yorkshire, his father was John Butterfield. He married Anna in 1828 she was born in 1796 at Norwich, Norfolk. In 1841 William and Anna were living at Somerset, they had a son called William and he was aged 11. In 1851 William Butterfield was living at Brighthelmstone, Sussex and his occupation was described as a Curate not having the cure of souls. William became Rector of Alphington in 1851 after the death of Richard Ellicombe.

Edward John Gore Dupuis MA became Rector in 1880.

Bernard Callender Bennett MA became Rector in 1915. He was born in 1876 in Birmingham and records from the 1881 Census show the Bennett family living at 57 St Pauls Square, Birmingham. Bernard's father was Alfred Bennett and he was a Roasting Rack Maker employing 19 men, five boys, one woman and two girls. The rest of the family were: Bernard's sisters Isabelle C. age 19, she looked after the house and other children, this meant that Bernard's mother must have died at some time before this Census. His second sister was Mary L. age 18 and a student, his third sister Hannah H. age 16 and also a student. Bernard's two brothers were Alfred H. aged 14, a scholar and George B. aged 10, also a scholar. Bernard was the last child in the record, he was aged 4 and a scholar. The family had a general domestic servant.
To find out who Bernard's mother was the 1871 Census showed the family were still resident at 57 St Pauls Square and Alfred was recorded as a Rack Maker, this time employing 20 men and 10 boys. Bernard's mother was alive at this time and she was Elizabeth aged 38. They had two servants.
In the 1861 Census Alfred and Elizabeth were living in a different part of the Parish and Alfred was working as a Rack Maker on his own.
Returning to Bernard himself the 1891 Census showed he was a scholar living once more at 57 St Pauls Square, his father had probably died as he was not recorded. Bernard's two brothers Alfred and George were working as a bottle rack maker and rack makers apprentice respectively. Both his sisters, Isabella and Hannah looked after the house and they still employed one servant. Bernard at 14 years of age was still a scholar.
By 1901 Bernard had moved to 31 Abbey Road, Far Cotton, Northamptonshire . He was a clergyman, Church of England.
In 1908 Bernard married Kate (Kitty) Hilda Malcolm at Kingston on the Middlesex-Surrey borders.. Kitty Malcolm was born in London in 1882 and was the daughter of James R. Malcolm and Matilda E. Malcolm. James Malcolm was a merchant in Jute and Hemp and both he and his wife, Matilda, were born in Dundee Scotland.
I found a christening record for Bernard's father, Alfred Bennett was born on 12th January 1831 and christened on 21st April 1831, his father was Edward Bright Bennett and his mother was simply recorded as Hannah. A death record for an Alfred Bennett was recorded in the 4th quarter of 1883 and his age at death fitted perfectly so I am sure this was Bernard's father.

William Hammond Croft MA became Rector in 1954.

William Humphrey Savage AMBIN became Rector in 1973.

Benjamin Eaton STP became Rector in 1979.

Lawrence Mark Bate BA became Rector in 1984.

Stephen Bessent BA became Rector in 2001.


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