Jenny Pennell & Liz Gilding
There have been a number of vicars
in Mattishall - the Rev. Madoc was vicar until his death in the
1930's. Rev. Graham took over and was not very well received by
the villagers as he was considered a 'foreigner'. He was rather
eccentric and had a flat, black straw Roman Catholic type hat.
Florrie Green was the church organist and George Randal was Parish
Clerk. During the winter the church caretaker Roper Land used
to light the furnace on Sundays but it gave out very little heat
and the congregation used to call it 'Holy Smoke'
Church anniversaries were held by
the methodists on Neaves Meadow. A stage was erected and lots
of the villagers came Dressed in their Sunday best. Recitations,
songs and short readings were enjoyed by all. On a Tuesday each
week the children and members of the church went round the village
accompanied by a piano or harmonium tied to a cart belonging to
Wesley Lusher. They sang hymns until teatime when they would go
to Mr. Marshall Cole's barn in Welgate Road for tea. Afterwards
they would play on his meadow until dark. If you did not belong
to the Chapel you were allowed in the meadow by paying 3d.
At the time of the Coronation all
the villagers went to the church to watch on a television erected
by Mr. Grief who ran the village electrical shop.
There used to be Sunday school outings
to Yarmouth, Lowestoft and Hunstanton using Farrow's lorries.
Later Thompson's charabanes were used but you had to pay. During
the war outings used to be to Ringland Hills as the seaside resorts
were out of bounds. A steam engine being driven by Chris Orton
Snr. was hired from Farrows. The children were picked up at Mattishall
Church for a bumpy ride on bales on straw. If the wind blew the
wrong way the children were covered in soot smuts from the steam
engine. Andrew Moore who worked in Norton's bakery was a good
bell ringer and a Mr. Wright who was a grave digger rang the church
bell when somebody died. The church bell was originally the curfew
There was also a Primitive Methodist
chapel behind Hewitts the butchers on the Plain.
The Congregational chapel was at
Old Moor. The organ from the Old Moor as well as the pews are
now in the current chapel. They did not celebrate church anniversaries.
The Quakers also had a chapel and
a burial ground on the road to Dereham.
There was a Methodist chapel which
was built in front of the Duke of Edinburgh pub. Quite a lot pf
the children used to attend the chapel three times a day on a
Sunday. Connie Hill used to play the squeeze box. They also went
to Scripture Union which was held in a hall behind The Swan and
Edith Bear used to collect subscriptions. There was a different
teacher each week at the Chapel, either Mr. Lusher, Mr. Leveridge
or either of the two Mr Horne's
There used to be lantern lectures
at the United Reform Chapel
Amy Grix took Sunday School at Burgh
There are still two lampposts in
the churchyard which used to have a glass top on.