United Benefice of Thornhill & Whitley Lower
Serving our local communities
The earliest monuments in the church are the 9th-century Anglo-Saxon stones displayed in the Savile Chapel, most are fragments of crosses, four with inscriptions. In the Savile Chapel are also several important tombs. An effigy of a knight in chain mail, thought to be Sir John de Thornhill (d. 1322). An alabaster tomb chest with eighteen 'weepers' (small kneeling figures) around it and effigies thought to represent Sir John Savile (d. 1481) and his wife. An oak tomb-chest set up in 1529 to commemorate alater Sir John (d. 1504) and his two wives. The tomb of Sir George Savile (d. 1614) and his wife Anne, marked by a massive Renaissance monument. An alabaster effigy of a later Sir George (d. 1622) carved by the famous sculptor Maximilan Colt. A monument to Sir George Savile of Rufford (d. 1743). Also displayed in the Savile Chapel are three earlier medieval cross slabs found in 1990 when the monument of the earlier Sir John was dismantled for conservation. Two show pairs of shears, a common female emblem, and a third a pair of scissors, perhaps denoting a tailor. A huge programme of conservation, cleaning and restoration is now complete (January 2015).
Acknowledgment to WY Archives Services’ History of the church for much of this text.
Sir George Savile 8th Baronet click to read with pictures.- provided as an initial appraisal of the family in connection with the Contested Haritage debate.
Sir George Savile (1726-1784). 8th Baronet of Thornhill
Sir George Savile, 8th Baronet of Thornhill, was the last male representative of the old and distinguished Yorkshire family, with a parliamentary ancestry dating back to the 16th century
Born in Savile House, London, the son of Sir George Savile, 7th Baronet, and Lady Savile (born Mary Pratt) he inherited his baronetcy on the death of his father in 1743. Savile was educated at Queens' College, Cambridge and was a Fellow of the Royal Society, vice-president of the Society of Arts and Sciences, colonel of the first battalion of the West Riding militia and a patron of the Westminster Infirmary.
Savile was a leading Whig politician and MP for Yorkshire between 1759 and 1783 but never wished for office and never belonged to a party. He “valued the approbation of his constituents as his sole reward” and devoted the whole of his time to public affairs.
Savile had a reputation for his unbending integrity and unostentatious benevolence taking many unpopular positions steered by his own opinions arrived at by ‘integrity and disinterestedness’
Savile believed in religious toleration, and was an enemy to authoritarian tendencies in the Church of England. In general, he advocated views of a very liberal character, including measures of relief to Roman Catholics and to Protestant dissenters,
Imperialism and Colonialism
Savile protested against British territorial acquisitions as being ‘public robberies’ and refused to serve when elected to Burgoyne’s committee on East India affairs in 1772 - ‘being against the whole system of India affairs. He looked on their trade as destructive, either from bringing in too great an increase of money, which would overturn the liberty of this country, or from many of the importations, tea especially, being destructive of the health of the people of England.
A close friend of Edmund Burke, Savile defended the action of the American colonists and publicly lauded Burke’s speech on conciliation with America (March 22 1775). Much admired by the Americans Savile’s portrait hung in Benjamin Franklin's house a decade before the American Revolution.
Slave trade abolitionist
Sir George Savile was the intimate friend of Hull MP David Hartley. Hartley was the first MP to put the case for abolition of the slave trade before the House of Commons, moving a resolution in 1776 that "the slave trade is contrary to the laws of God and the rights of men". Sir George Savile seconded the motion and is listed on Wilberforce’s list of Abolitionists
In the last years of his life Savile suffered severely from asthma. He died in the arms of his friend David Hartley in January 1784 eight months after he collapsed while speaking in Parliament.
He is buried in the family vault at Thornhill.
Clarkson, Thomas (1839) The History of the Rise, Progress and Accomplishment of the Abolition of the African Slave Trade by the British Parliament. Project Gutenberg e book
Namier, L & Brooke, J (eds) (1964) The History of Parliament and the House of Commons. Boydell and Brewer.
Spears, John Randolph (1901) The American slave-trade. New York: C. Scribner's Sons
--------------------------------------------JG July 2022-----------------------------------------
Great Heathen Army
The Army did not stick to the coasts, but went inland and roamed about, exacting tribute as it went (or ‘making peace’, as the chroniclers described it), which means the Army would promise not to attack if the people paid a considerable sum, and sometimes attack anyway even after the money had been paid. They first went north to York, ending a civil war between two contenders for the Northumbrian throne by killing both and taking control themselves. In 869, the Army went to East Anglia, killed king Edmund (and thus made him a saint), and used the area as a base from which to start a series of attacks on Wessex. In 871 they were joined by a ‘Great Summer Army’ which came over from the Continent, and they continued to harass Wessex and Mercia in the next few years.
The above is an extract from :
Changes in relations between Anglo-Saxons and Scandinavians 792-1042
Report on the monument to Sir George and Lady Anne Savile 1614
GEORGE EDMUND STREET was born at Woodford in Essex on the 20th of June 1824. He was the third son of Thomas Street, solicitor, by his second wife, Mary Anne Miliington. George went to school at Mitcham in about 1830, and later to the Camberwell collegiate school, which he left in 1839.