Letter – Robert Richardson to Rowland Burdon – 3 Apr 1799

Document Type: Letter
Date: 3 Apr 1799
Correspondent: Robert Richardson
Recipient: Rowland Burdon
Archive Source: DUL CCB B 182 121
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      Paradise Buildings 3rd April 1799


      You will perhaps not see more on the two last pages of Mr Harvey’s letter, than you already know, respecting the Enclosure Bill. I have to lament, as an individual, that the great and good wishes and intentions of the Bishop of Durham, seem to be thrown on the back ground, convinced as I fully am, from my perfect knowledge of the manners and pursuits of the people of the western parts of the parish of Stanhope, (amongst whom I spent the first thirty years of my life), that, though they seem to turn a deaf ear to His Lordship’s benevolent and christian proposal, under the pretence of it’s having been made too late, yet, should increased population, or, the substance or shadow of any pretext, whatever, give room, they will not fail to cram Methodist and Presbyterian Meeting-houses in every corner where the passive mildness of the Episcopal eye may suffer their innovations to pass without censure.

      Rookhope seems to be more in need of a Chapel than any other part of Stanhope Parish, both on account of its distance from Stanhope and St John’s Chapel, and the badness of the roads which lead to it. 

      Should there appear to His Lordship, any prospect for a Chapel being erected and endowed in that district, I am ready and anxious to make my offering of eight or ten acres of Land, (or a less portion, with equivalent in way-leaves), in an elevated situation, in my Customary Freehold Estates at Hangingwells, (being the central part of Rookhope, on the western side of Rookhope Burn), for the purpose of a Chapel being erected thereon. You will be one of the first to know His Lordship’s intention, should He, in His wisdom, perceive such a scheme practicable and will, when you think it right, mention to His Lordship, my wish to make this humble offering, for the benefit of Rookhope. 

      I am, with great respect, Sir, Your very obed[ien]t Serv[an]t 

      Robert Richardson
Rowland Burdon was at this time an MP for Durham

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The Dukesfield Smelters and Carriers Project aimed to celebrate and discover the heritage of the Dukesfield Arches & lead carriers' routes between Blaydon and the lead mines of Allendale and Weardale. A two year community project, it was led by the Friends of the North Pennines in partnership with Hexhamshire and Slaley Parish Councils and the active support of Allendale Estates. It was funded by the Heritage Lottery Fund and the generous support of other sponsors. Friends of the North Pennines: Charity No:1137467