THE STAINED GLASS of CHRIST CHURCH, EPSOM COMMON


Some of Christ Church's extensive stained glass.
Some of Christ Church's extensive stained glass.
Pictures from various sources. Montage © Roger Morgan 2017.

It is hard to imagine Christ Church without its magnificent stained glass in every lower-level window (plus two in the high-level clerestory). But, bar two exceptions (at J & M in the listing below - both closely linked to William Trotter, who was instrumental in getting the church built), this is how it was at the Consecration on 18 October 1876. The general glazing - as remains in most of the clerestory and in all the various lobbies and vestries - was of "cathedral glass" (i.e. randomly tinted panes of very slightly textured glass, set in geometric leading) see below.

1876 Cathedral glass
1876 "Cathedral glass" in the windows of one of Christ Church's vestries.
Photograph © Roger Morgan 2017.

Other than the 1950s replacement of some glass (at A & B in the plan below) over the high altar that was destroyed by enemy action in 1941, all the stained glass seen today was installed within 30 years of the consecration - indeed, mostly within the first few years.

The following diagram (which, starting with the East Window, indexes the 17 sets of stained glass windows from A to Q) and shows the date of each installation - a quite random pattern.

Plan
Outline plan of Christ Church showing the random order in which the stained glass was installed.
Image © Roger Morgan 2017.

The following key to that plan is also a "hot-linked" index to the descriptive sections further below. (The "Back to the index" under each section return to here.).
A:     East (originally Elizabeth Trotter memorial) window
B:     "Light of the World"
C:     Mary Bischoff memorial
D:     Arthur and Edith Kennedy memorial (in the clerestory)
E:     Charles Collier Jones memorial
F:     "A Thank Offering"
G:     William George Nunn memorial
H:     Frank Northey memorial
I:     The West windows
J:     Trotter infants memorial
K:     Charles Bischoff memorial
L:     Ann Cottle memorial
M:     George Brown memorial
N:     Charles Vernon Strange memorial
O:     "T-LM and G-GB" memorial
P:     Elliott Ernest Puckle memorial
Q:     John, Maria and Elizabeth Trotter memorial
Almost all the windows were installed as memorials - the only exceptions being: the 1952/55 replacement of the East Window at A; the original "Light of the World" at B and its 1952 replacement; the "Thank Offering" at F; and the West Windows at I.

As noted on the plan, the windows at C, E, F, G & H are among the later installations. This is because, for the initial 1876 build, there were insufficient funds to erect the originally-planned South Aisle in which these windows are located. The Aisle was added in 1879 - having been generously funded by Lord Rosebery, who was a regular worshipper at Christ Church. Indeed, window H was installed as soon as the Aisle was completed.

And, although the various windows were installed randomly, there was some underlying plan from the outset. The Aisle windows (except the Northey window at H) show incidents from the life of Christ in chronological order. Starting at C, there are a couple of childhood scenes, followed by incidents from Jesus's ministry in E, F & G down the South Aisle. In the North Aisle, K, L & M shown scenes from what we now call Holy Week, on the way to Jesus's crucifixion.

Almost all the glass was manufactured by James Powell & Sons at their Whitefriars Glassworks. The five exceptions are:
  • D - manufactured by Herbert Bryans;
  • J, L & M - manufactured by Heaton, Butler and Bayne; and
  • Q - manufactured by Clayton and Bell.
Designers' names are given where these are known.

A number of the entries below contain hotlinks that, when clicked, will lead to more detailed articles. For such articles on this website, use your browser's "back" button to return to this article.



A: The East Window.


The current East Window dates from 1952/55 - being the replacement of the 1877 original which suffered irreparable bomb damage during WW2.

The original window was installed in memory of Elizabeth Trotter who, having made substantial provision in her Will for the erection of the present building - delivered by William Trotter of the next generation, who doubtless funded the window - is known as the "founder of the Parish".

A brass wall plaque in the archway between the Chancel and the vestries states:
TO THE PRAISE AND GLORY OF GOD. / THE EAST WINDOW IN THE CHANCEL IS / OFFERED IN GRATEFUL REMEMBRANCE / OF ELIZABETH TROTTER, WHO BY THE / GRACE OF GOD WAS FOUNDER OF THIS CHURCH / AND PARISH, SHE WAS DAUGHTER OF / JAMES TROTTER, ESQRE OF HORTON MANOR, / AND DIED OCTOBER 25th A.D.1868. / "HE TURNETH THE WILDERNESS INTO A STANDING WATER / AND DRY GROUND INTO WATER SPRINGS." PS. CVII.35. /
Three images of the 1877 East Window
Three images of the 1877 East Window.
Pictures from various sources. Montage © Roger Morgan 2017.

The montage above is made from the only half-decent pictures available of the 1877 East Window and provides only tantalising glimpses. On the left is the enlargement of a postage stamp sized section of an 1890 postcard of the church interior. (In subsequent views down the church, the East Window is obscured by the 1909 Rood Screen.) Bottom left is a section of a view of the high altar from Christ Church's 50th anniversary history booklet published in 1926. Top right is a section of the image from the cover of the April 1953 Parish Magazine, the lower part of which was of the 1952 replacement.

In March 1941, a high explosive bomb fell on Stamford Green. The blast damaged the main sections of the original East Window beyond repair, and they spent the next 12 years covered by tarpaulins.

External and internal views of the tarpaulins covering the East Window
External and internal views of the tarpaulins covering the East Window.
(Parts of cover pictures of the monthly Parish Magazine in the late 1940s and early 1950s.)
Images courtesy of Christ Church.

The War Damage Compensation Commission agreed to pay only for the replacement of the damaged main sections. Those replacement windows were installed in late 1952, and it is no surprise that, after 12 years' gloom in the chancel, the new brightness was marked by a new image on the cover of the April 1953 Parish Magazine, as below.

The new windows - made, like most of Christ Church's stained glass, by James Powell and Sons - were the work of their chief designer, Edward Liddall Armitage (1887-1967), widely regarded as one of the best ever stained glass practitioners, and author of the magisterial 1959 book Stained glass: history, technology and practice. The window's theme is the Te Deum, a hymn of praise, joy and thanksgiving dating from the 4th Century. Some of its familiar words run through the window.

New Main Sections of the East Window
Left: The new main sections of the East Window (but still with the 1877 tracery)
from the cover of the April 1953 Parish Magazine
Image courtesy of Christ Church.
Right: The East Window as completed in 1955
Photograph © Nishi Sharma of Light & Shade Photography, 2015

It is thought that the original window may also have been based on the Te Deum. (The 1878 original of the 1953 replacement window at B below is known to be the same subject.) Nevertheless, Armitage's design was rather different and, in any case, used a quite different colour palette. That may not be obvious from the greyscale picture on the left above, although that does show a marked difference in colour density between the old and new glass.

Thanks to a legacy from parishioner Miss Dorothy May Webb (1879-1953), Christ Church was able to replace the glass in the East Window's tracery in 1955. This completed Armitage's new design, giving the complete East Window still in place today, as pictured on the right above.

All this is recorded in the inscription carved into the stone of the archway between the Chancel and the vestries (near the brass wall plaque about the original window mentioned above) which states:
THE PRESENT EAST WINDOW / WAS ERECTED 1952 / TO REPLACE THE ORIGINAL / WHICH WAS DAMAGED BEYOND / REPAIR BY ENEMY ACTION IN / 1941 / THE ORIGINAL GLASS OF THE / TRACERY WAS REPLACED BY / THE PRESENT GLASS IN 1955 / THE GIFT OF DOROTHY WEBB / A FAITHFUL WORSHIPPER IN / THIS CHURCH /
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B: "The Light of the World".


The Light of the World
"The Light of the World" (with Powell's now trademark White Friar)
Photograph © Nishi Sharma of Light & Shade Photography, 2015

This window, high on the south wall of the Chancel, depicts Jesus as the "Light of the World" (John 8:12). The original (almost certainly funded by William Trotter) was installed in 1878. The main section was destroyed beyond repair by the 1941 bomb on Stamford Green that also destroyed most of the East Window (at A above).

As for the East Window, the War Damage Compensation Commission agreed to pay only for the replacement of the damaged glass. Again depicting the "Light of the World", the main section was installed in 1952. (The tracery immediately above it is the 1878 original.) The new glass was made by James Powell & Sons at their Whitefriars Glassworks and, like the new East Window, has Powell's now trademark White Friar in the bottom right corner.

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C: Mary Bischoff (1850-83)


Mary Bischoff's memorial windows.
Mary Bischoff's memorial windows.
Photograph © Nishi Sharma of Light & Shade Photography, 2015

Click here for full details of these two memorial windows and of both Mary and her husband, Charles (whose memorial windows are diagonally across the church at K).

In summary, the windows were installed in 1884, the year after Mary's death, and show:
  • the flight into Egypt (Matthew 2:13-15) - designed by Henry Holiday, then Powell's head designer; and
  • the young Jesus in discussion with the teachers in the Temple (Luke 2:41-49).

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D: Arthur (1851-1902) & Edith (1876-1900) Kennedy


Arthur and Edith Kennedy's memorial windows
Arthur and Edith Kennedy's memorial windows
Photograph © Nishi Sharma of Light & Shade Photography, 2015

In stark contrast to all the lower level windows in the body of Christ Church, the high level clerestory windows are almost all filled with the original 1876 "cathedral glass". These two windows are the only exceptions.

Installed in 1903 (and manufactured by Herbert Bryans), they show Abraham and Sarah (Genesis 15-21). They were the first step in a subsequently abandoned scheme to fill the clerestory windows with saints - from the Old Testament on the south, and from the New Testament on the north.

There is no dedication on the windows, parish records show that they are in memory of Arthur Kennedy and his wife Edith, and were funded by their three children - Edith Madeline, Margaret Irene and Phyllis Muriel.

Arthur was born in 1851, the seventh of London solicitor Thomas and Susannah Lee (née Burton) Kennedy's ten children. After schooling in Brighton and at the Lycée in Orleans, he was articled to his father at solicitors Kennedy, Hughes & Kennedy in 1867, aged 16. Shortly after his father's death in 1873, Arthur became a partner and, later, the senior partner.

In 1887, the 36 year old Arthur married the 22 year old Edith Grace Augusta Minnie Watkins. Their three children were born between 1888 and 1893. Sadly, Edith died in May 1900, aged only 34. Arthur then moved away from the area, and died in Norfolk in 1902, aged 51. His body was brought back to Epsom to be buried alongside his wife in Epsom Cemetery.

Arthur was a keen amateur astronomer. He served on the Council of the British Astronomical Association and was also a Fellow of the Royal Astronomical Society. Arthur's obituary in the latter's Journal noted that, while he did no original work in astronomy, he had "a keen interest in astronomical studies. He devoted much of his leisure time to observing, and delighted his friends in Epsom by astronomical lectures in his own house."

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E: Charles Collier Jones (1830-1882)


Charles Collier Jones' memorial windows.
Charles Collier Jones' memorial windows.
Photograph © Nishi Sharma of Light & Shade Photography, 2015

Click here for full details of these three windows and of wine merchant Charles Collier Jones and his family.

In summary, the windows (by Powell's head designer, Henry Holiday) were installed in 1883, the year after Charles's death, and show:
  • Jesus talking to the Samaritan woman (John 4:3-42, text - "GOD IS A SPIRIT AND THEY THAT WORSHIP HIM / MUST WORSHIP HIM IN SPIRIT AND IN TRUTH" - from verse 24);
  • Jesus throwing the money changers out of the Temple (John 2:13-22, text - "TAKE THESE THINGS HENCE: MAKE NOT MY FATHER'S HOUSE / A HOUSE OF MERCHANDISE" - from verse 16); and
  • the marriage at Cana (John 2:1-11, text - "JESUS MANIFESTED FORTH HIS GLORY" - from verse 11.)

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F: A "Thank Offering"


An anonymous 'thank offering'
An anonymous "thank offering"
Photograph © Nishi Sharma of Light & Shade Photography, 2015

These three windows were installed in 1892. The panel at the foot of the centre window says they are "A THANK OFFERING / TO THE / GLORY OF GOD". The records show that they were ordered from Powells by the Revd Archer Hunter (the then Vicar of Christ Church) on behalf of a donor who wished to remain anonymous.

The windows, which were designed by Gaetano Meo, show, from left to right:
  • Jesus healing the paralysed man (Mark 2:3-12, text - "RISE, TAKE UP THY BED AND WALK" - from verse 9);
  • Jesus raising Jairus's daughter (Luke 8:40-56, text - "WEEP NOT SHE IS NOT DEAD BUT SLEEPETH" - from verse 52); and
  • the parable of the sower (Luke 8:4-15, text - "THE SEED IS THE WORD OF GOD" - from verse 11).

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G: William George Nunn (1831-92)


William George Nunn's memorial windows.
William George Nunn's memorial windows
Photograph © Nishi Sharma of Light & Shade Photography, 2015

Click here for full details of these three windows and of former coachman William George Nunn and his widow Juliet.

In summary, these windows were, like the "thank offering" windows at F, installed in 1892. While stylistically very similar, the records note them as being "after Poynter" (Edward John Poynter, a noted artist of the time). They show, as a single scene, the raising of Lazarus (John 11:1-46, but the text running across the bottom of all three windows - "FOR AS IN ADAM ALL DIE / EVEN SO IN CHRIST / SHALL ALL BE MADE ALIVE" - comes from 1 Corinthians 15:22).

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H: Francis Vernon Northey (1836-79)


Francis Northey's memorial window
Francis Northey's memorial window
Photograph © Roger Morgan 2014

This three light window, designed by John W Brown, was installed in 1879 as a memorial to Lt Col Francis Vernon Northey who was killed in South Africa during the Zulu wars. Francis, always known as "Frank", was the son of Edward Richard Northey of Woodcote House - a prominent member of Christ Church until his death in 1878.

The link above leads to article about Frank's interesting life - and his death and burials, the latter being reflected in the text running through the base of the three windows, namely:
"IN MEMORY OF / FRANCIS VERNON NORTHEY / LIEUTENANT COLONEL 60 RIFLES / BORN 14 OCTOBER 1836 DIED / FROM A MORTAL WOUND RECEIVED / AT THE BATTLE OF GINGHILOVA / ZULULAND ON PALM SUNDAY 6 APRIL / 1879 THIS WINDOW ERECTED / BY HIS WIDOW."
and in the wording of the brass plaque immediately under the windows, which reads:
"AT THE EARNEST DESIRE OF HIS WIDOW THE BODY WAS BROUGHT TO ENGLAND / AND BURIED IN EPSOM CEMETERY ON THE 9th OF DECEMBER 1879."
In a break from the Aisle windows' main theme of the life of Christ, the central light shows a stylised soldier from classical times. The texts on each side, "TRUST IN THE LORD / WITH ALL THINE HEART / AND LEAN NOT UNTO THINE / OWN UNDERSTANDING" and "IN ALL THY WAYS / ACKNOWLEDGE / HIM AND HE SHALL DIRECT THY PATHS", come from Proverbs 3:5-6.

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I: The West windows


The West windows
The West windows
Photograph © Roger Morgan 2017

These windows (together with the small rose above) were installed in 1878-79 as part of the general beautification of Christ Church, and were paid for by William Trotter.

From left to right, the main images in the windows show:
  • the Annunciation (Luke 1:26-38);
  • the Presentation of the child Jesus in the Temple (Luke 2:22-40);
  • the Adoration of the Magi (Matthew 2:11); and
  • the Baptism of Jesus (Matthew 3:13-17).

Powells' records do not always list the artist, but the first two of these (and the rose) - all installed in 1878 - are shown as designed by H Burrow. For some reason, t he colours of these are less dense than the other two windows that were installed the following year.

Under the main images of the windows as listed above are shown the four Evangelists or Gospel-writers with their traditional symbols - from left to right: St Matthew (angel); St Mark (winged lion); St Luke (winged ox); and St John (eagle).

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J: Three Trotter Infants


The Baptistry windows
The Baptistry windows
Photograph © Nishi Sharma of Light & Shade Photography, 2015

Together with the windows in memory of George Brown (at M) these six small windows were the only stained glass in place at the time of Christ Church's Consecration in October 1876.

Manufactured by Heaton, Butler & Bayne, each window depicts a cherub, and a ribbon runs though them all carrying a text drawn from the baptismal catechism: "MEMBERS OF CHRIST / CHILDREN OF GOD / INHERITORS OF THE KINGDOM"

The brass plate immediately behind the font states:
TO THE GLORY OF GOD / IN MEMORY OF / SAMPSON HENRY, MARY ELIZABETH, ELEANOR GEORGINA / INFANT CHILDREN OF / WILLIAM AND MARY ELIZABETH TROTTER.
The children's dates were: Sampson Henry (1835-1836); Mary Elizabeth (1837-1840); and Eleanor Georgina (1855-1856).

In fact, these three children were born and died with the surname Brown. Indeed, William and Mary Elizabeth Trotter's ten surviving children were all born with that surname: the family changed it to Trotter in 1868 as a condition of Mary Elizabeth's inheriting Horton Manor from her aunt, Miss Elizabeth Trotter, to whom she was the closest living blood relation. As set out more fully in the notes for Window Q, William was then instrumental in delivering the new Christ Church, for which Miss Elizabeth Trotter - known as "the founder of the parish" - had left provision in her Will.)

It would seem that William Trotter was planning this memorial at an early stage of construction. (The other stained glass in place at the time of the Consecration - at M - could not have been thought of until George Brown's death in April 1876.) Under each pair of Baptistry windows, relevant Biblical texts are carved into the stonework, in fine Gothic script. It is most unlikely that this intricate work could have been undertaken after the stonework had been set in place.

From left to right, the three texts are:
  • "And they shall see His Face and His Name shall be in their Foreheads / Rev. xxii. 4"
  • "And in their mouth was found no guile; for they are without fault before the Throne of God / Rev. xiv. 5"
  • "And they shall be mine saith the Lord of Hosts in that day when I make up my jewels / Malachi iii.17 "
(The final text has been rendered almost illegible as a result of calcification from long-term water ingress.)

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K: Charles Bishoff (1833-96)


Charles Bischoff's memorial windows.
Charles Bischoff's memorial windows.
Photograph © Nishi Sharma of Light & Shade Photography, 2015

Click here for full details of these three windows and of both Charles and his wife, Mary (whose memorial windows are diagonally across the church at C).

In summary, the windows (designed by Edward Penwarden) were installed in 1896, the year in which Charles died. They show, as a single scene, the Palm Sunday entry into Jerusalem (Matthew 21:1-11, text - "Blessed is he that cometh / In the name of the Lord / Hosanna in the highest" - running across the three windows, from verse 9).

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L: Anne Cottle (1807-84)


Ann Cottle's memorial windows.
Ann Cottle's memorial windows.
Photograph © Nishi Sharma of Light & Shade Photography, 2015

Click here for full details of these three memorial windows and of Anne Cottle, a servant of the Trotters at Horton Manor.

In summary, the windows - understood to be manufactured by Heaton, Butler and Bayne - were installed in 1884, the year of Anne's death. They show:
  • the parable of the widow's mite (Mark 12:41-44);
  • Jesus with some of his disciples (no obvious single source); and
  • Jesus washing the disciples' feet (John 13:1-17)

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M: George Brown (1802-86)


George Brown's memorial windows.
George Brown's memorial windows.
Photograph © Nishi Sharma of Light & Shade Photography, 2015

Click here for full details of these three memorial windows and of wealthy colonial trader George Brown.

In summary, these windows in memory of William Trotter's brother were - with those in the Baptistry (at J), in memory of three of William and Mary Elizabeth's three infant children - the only stained glass in place at the time of the Christ Church's October 1876 Consecration.

They were manufactured by Heaton, Butler and Bayne (like those in the Baptistry), and show:
  • the agony at Gethsemane (Mark 14:32-42);
  • Jesus after the flagellation (Matthew 27:27-29); and
  • the way of the Cross (John 19:17).

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N: Charles Vernon Strange (1849-1878)


The Charles Vernon Strange windows
The Charles Vernon Strange windows
Photograph © Nishi Sharma of Light & Shade Photography, 2015

As noted on brass plaque immediately under the windows, these are:
IN MEMORY OF CHARLES VERNON STRANGE, LIEUTENANT ROYAL NAVY, LORD OF THE MANOR OF EPSOM WHO WAS LOST ON / H.M.S. EURYDICE, OFF THE ISLE OF WIGHT MARCH 24th 1878, AGED 29. "SO HE BRINGETH THEM UNTO THEIR DESIRED HAVEN"
(That concluding text is from Psalm 107:30.)

Charles was only 23 when, at the end of 1871, he inherited the Lordship of the Manor of Epsom from his childless uncle, Henry Blackburn. Charles had followed his father, James Newburgh Strange, into the Royal Navy.

HMS Eurydice was a fast 26-gun wooden frigate of 921 tons designed with a very shallow draught to operate in coastal waters. Launched in 1843, she saw service in the West Indies, South Africa and, during the Crimean War, the White Sea. This was followed by twenty years as a stationary training ship. In 1877, she was refitted for seagoing service, still as a training ship.

Eurydice's first trip in that capacity was - with Charles as the navigating Lieutenant - a three-month tour of the West Indies and Bermuda. That passed without significant incident, and she began her return voyage to Portsmouth on 6 March 1878. At 3.30pm on Sunday 24 March 1878, she was observed from Ventnor on the Isle of Wight - some 30 miles from home - with all sail set, presumably with the aim of reaching port before nightfall.

A few minutes later, a snow storm came on very suddenly with extremely heavy gusts of wind. The ship quickly foundered and sank. Only two of the 319 aboard survived: the great majority of those not carried down with the ship died of exposure in the freezing waters. The disaster shocked the nation, getting extensive coverage in the press. The event lingered long in the collective memory: in 1898, Sir Arthur Conan Doyle wrote a poem The Home-Coming of the Eurydice and, in 1918, Gerard Manley Hopkins wrote The Loss of the Eurydice. It still ranks as one of Britain's worst peacetime naval disasters.

Installed in 1878, the year of that tragedy, and designed by John W Brown, the three lights of the window depict, from left to right, the following highly relevant scenes:
  • Jesus consoling Martha on the death of Lazarus (John 11:1-44, text - "THY BROTHER SHALL RISE AGAIN" - from verse 23);
  • Jesus calming the storm (Mark 4:35-41, text - "PEACE BE STILL" - from verse 39); and
  • Jesus rescuing Peter from the waves (Matthew 14:22-33, although the text, "WHEN THOU PASSETH THROUGH THE WATERS I WILL BE WITH THEE", comes from Isaiah 43:2).
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O: "T-LM and G-GB"


T-LM and G-GB
T-LM and G-GBs
Photograph © Nishi Sharma of Light & Shade Photography, 2015

Installed in 1878, and depicting Jesus as the "Good Shepherd" (John 10:11), this window carries no dedication. However, parish records show that it was paid for by a Miss Bolton of Durdans Lodge in memory of, enigmatically, "T-LM and G-GB."

It is probable that the donor was Frances Maria Bolton. She was born in 1821 in Ghazeepore, Bengal, India to George (a Captain in the East India Company's Army) and Fanny Bolton. (Fanny had also been born in Bengal.) The couple had at least one other child, Georgiana, born in 1827 in Agra. George died in June 1828 and, at some point, Fanny and Frances returned to England.

The 1861 Census records them (with Fanny as the head) in a prosperous household at White Horse Farm, Ashtead. By the 1881 Census, they had moved to Worple Road. Fanny died in 1885, aged 86. Although her funeral was held at St Martin's, it was taken by Christ Church's vicar, the Revd Archer Hunter. Frances - who never married - was also in Worple Road for the 1891 Census, and was still there when she died in 1898, aged 78. Her funeral was also at St Martin's and taken by the Revd Archer Hunter. She was then buried alongside her mother in Epsom Cemetery.

It is not clear why Frances was at Durdans Lodge (now No 6 Woodcote Road and converted to flats) in 1888 - perhaps there was some work being done on the Worple Road house. As to the dedicatees, "G-GB" could be her sister, GeorGiana Bolton, but that is pure speculation. In any case, nothing has been found in the records to suggest who "T-LM" was.

The window is obviously intended to complement the nearby Window P (see immediately below), installed the previous year and known to be by Powell's head designer Henry Holiday.

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P: Elliott Ernest Puckle (1867-70)


Elliott Ernest Puckle Window
Elliott Ernest Puckle Window
Photograph © Nishi Sharma of Light & Shade Photography, 2015

This window, by Powell's head designer Henry Holiday, shows a guardian angel with a child. Running down the window is a text from Hebrews 1:14, "Are they not all / ministering Spirits / sent forth / to minister for them who shall / be heirs of salvation". The dedication at the foot of the window is "IN MEMORIAM EEP".

When the window was installed in 1877, a year after Christ Church's Consecration, this North Transept was filled with pews facing into the Chancel. (It was converted to a Memorial Chapel in 1920.) Lord Rosebery, a regular worshipper at Christ Church, regarded the space as his family's private chapel and, in recent years, it had been thought that "EEP" was a member of his family: while the Earl's title was Rosebery, the surname was Primrose, and those flowers are fairly prominent in the panel immediately above the dedication.

However, recent research has found that the window was paid for by Henry and Lucy Puckle in memory of their son Elliott Ernest who had died seven years previously - in 1870, just short of his fourth birthday. (And further research has found that, as originally commissioned, the window's dedication was to be, "In memoriam E.E.Puckle". However, the space available turned out to be smaller than first estimated: the name was thus abbreviated to "E.E.P." and Henry secured a reduction in the total price from £25 to £22.)

Elliott's parents, Henry John Puckle and his wife, Lucy Harriett (née Standidge), were Londoners. They married in 1854 and, for a few years, they lived in Henry's native Camberwell - where they had three children. They then moved briefly to Epsom (living at South Lodge in South Street) and, in 1861, moved away again - to East Dulwich, where Henry was appointed secretary to the committee which organised the building of the new church of St John the Evangelist. Shortly afterwards, they moved back to Epsom - where Elliott was born in 1866. They lived firstly on Woodcote Road and then moved to the Manor House in West Street, where they lived in for the remainder of their time in Epsom.

Henry was an accountant and worked for the National Life Assurance Society in the City (where, by the 1880s, he had risen to become manager and secretary). Henry and Lucy had ten children, eight of which survived to adulthood. In addition to Elliott's death in 1870, they had a one-day-old son who died unnamed in 1874.

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Q: John (1780-1856), Maria (1787-1861) and Elizabeth Trotter (1786-1868)


John, Maria and Elizabeth Trotter' memorial windows
John, Maria and Elizabeth Trotter' memorial windows
Photograph © Nishi Sharma of Light & Shade Photography, 2015

The dedication running across the very bottom of both windows says, "TO THE GLORY OF GOD AND IN LOVING MEMORY OF JOHN TROTTER / MARIA TROTTER HIS WIFE AND ELIZABETH TROTTER HIS SISTER".

Manufactured by Clayton & Bell and installed in 1879, the windows show two of Jesus's post-resurrection appearances:
  • on the road to Emmaus (Luke 24:13-53, text - "ABIDE WITH US FOR IT IS TOWARDS / EVENING AND THE DAY IS FAR SPENT" - from verse 29) across the upper part of the windows; and
  • on the shore of Galilee (also known as Tiberias) for the disciples' miraculous catch of fish (John 21:1-14, text - "CAST THE NETS ON THE RIGHT SIDE / OF THE SHIP AND YE SHALL FIND" - from verse 6) across the lower parts.
The windows were doubtless funded by William Trotter, and remember some members of the previous generation of "Trotters of Horton Manor".

The Trotter family came to Epsom in 1769, when the widowed John Trotter - an up-market cabinet-maker and upholsterer of Soho Square (who was appointed Royal Upholsterer in 1754) - bought the old moated manor and estate at Horton. On his death, aged 77, in 1790, the Manor passed to his eldest son, the 36 year old James Trotter - a barrister (and, in 1798, High Sheriff of Surrey). Dissatisfied with the moated manor house, James had the new Horton Place built alongside it with an enclosed park of 90 acres taken from the estate's extensive farmland. The original building was then demolished - the site of which is now the Old Moat Garden Centre in Horton Lane.

James and his wife Elizabeth (née Meyrick) had four children: John; James (who died in his teens); Anne (who died in 1822 - but after having married and had children); and Elizabeth. It is this John, his wife Maria (née Perkins, whom he married in 1809) and his sister Elizabeth to whom these windows are dedicated.

In his younger days, John had been Army Storekeeper General among great suspicion of corruption, John was allowed to retire on a healthy pension and lived the life of a country gentleman, plus a spell as MP for West Surrey in 1840-47. John was closely involved in the establishment of the first Christ Church in 1843, set up by St Martin of Tours (then the parish church for the whole of Epsom) as a "chapel of ease".

When John died in 1856, the Horton Manor passed to his wife Maria (they had no children) was seen as the chatelaine of Horton until her death in 1861. When she died, the Manor passed to John's unmarried sister, Elizabeth. She waged a campaign for the increasingly crowded Christ Church to be enlarged or replaced and to become a parish in its own right. Unsuccessful in her lifetime, she left made substantial provision in her will for a larger building, but on condition that its became a free-standing parish church.

As neither she or her brother had any children, it had been arranged that, on Elizabeth's death, Horton Manor would pass to her late sister Anne's daughter, Mary Elizabeth, long married to the wealthy William Brown - on condition that the family changed its name to Trotter, which they did.

It was not a condition of the inheritance that William and Mary Elizabeth continued Elizabeth's campaign for a new Christ Church as a parish church, but William took it on with great energy and secured the goal with the new church's consecration in 1876. William was a significant benefactor to the new Christ Church: in addition to the stained glass (the present window, the original East Window at A, the original "Light of the World" at B, the West Windows at I and the Baptistry windows at J), he made other financial contributions to the new building, not least paying for the original William Hill organ.

Mary Elizabeth died in 1885, two years before William in 1887. They are appropriately remembered in the spectacular decoration in the high altar's reredos and around the East Window. Horton Manor passed to their oldest son, William Sampson, but he moved away to the West Country and the estate became part of the "Epsom Cluster" of mental hospitals. Somewhat adapted, Horton Manor is now Canterbury House at the centre of Manor Park.

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Roger Morgan © April, 2017
(with grateful acknowledgements to www.stainedglassrecords.org for the technical details)