Saturday, 11 August 2012

John Collis died 19th June 1781

The Parish Clerk (1907)
 Peter Hampson Ditchfield
In memory of
John Collis Husband of
Eliz: Collis who liv'd in
Wedlock together 50 years
he served as Parish Clerk 41 years
And died June 19th 1781 aged 69 years

Him who covered up the Dead
Is himself laid in the same bed
Time with his crooked scythe hath made
Him lay his mattock down and spade
May he and we all rise again
To everlasting life AMEN.

The name Collis occurs amongst those who held the office of parish clerk at West Haddon. The Rev. John T. Page, to whom I am indebted for the above information, has gleaned the following particulars from the parish registers and other sources. The clerk who reigned in 1903 was Thomas Adams, who filled the position for eighteen years.

He succeeded his father-in-law, William Prestidge, who died 24 March, 1886, after holding the office fifty-three years. His predecessor was Thomas Collis, who died 30 January, 1833, after holding the office fifty-two years, and succeeded John Colledge, who, according to an old weather-beaten stone still standing in the churchyard, died 12 September, 1781. How long Colledge held office cannot now be ascertained. Here are some remarkable examples of long years of service, Collis and Prestidge having held the office for 105 years.

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