St Edwards Churchyard

Photo added by Steven Keller

St Edwards Churchyard

Guildford, Guildford Borough, Surrey, England
Memorials 1 added (100% photographed)

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In 1561 the owner of Sutton Park, Catholic Sir Henry Weston KB, grandson and heir of the founder of Sutton Place, was made Knight of the Bath at the coronation of Queen Elizabeth I. He married Dorothy Arundell of Wardour in Wiltshire in the same year. The Queen visited Sutton and stayed for three nights in 1560. Sir Henry Weston was Sheriff of Surrey in 1569 and 1571 and Member of Parliament for Surrey in 1571. To qualify, it was necessary for him to conform to the established Church, at least outwardly, and he made the declaration on 28 November 1569. The true state of affairs may be indicated by the official searches of Sutton Place for Catholic priests on 5 November 1578 and 14 June 1591, and the discovery in the 19th century of hiding places for priests, one concealing a casket of relics and another a chalice and paten.


In 1857 the chaplaincy at Sutton Place was formed into a mission, the priest becoming a missioner apostolic. Around 1859 the district boundaries were approved by the first Bishop of Southwark in the newly established Catholic hierarchy of England and Wales. The centre of worship was still the chapel in Sutton Place


In 1911 the Parish Priest was Dr Arthur Hinsley. The focus of Catholic worship had moved from the manor house Sutton Place to the present Church which was opened on 27 September 1876. Dr Hinsley was a vigorous parish priest, he instituted the Corpus Christi procession (which still takes place here every year), moved the school to larger premises, set up the displays of relics which can be seen in the Church today, and cycled two or three times a week to teach history and sacred scripture at St John's Seminary, Wonersh. During his tenure the reredos, with the tabernacle and exposition throne were given by Lord Howard of Glossop. Hinsley listed the known parishioners, estimating them at about one hundred and twenty, including children. Average participation was about seventy, rather less than the regular attaendance of 120 today. After six years at St Edward's he moved on in 1911. In 1935 he was appointed Archbishop of Westminster and in 1937 appointed a Cardinal. He died in office in 1943. He is buried in Westminster Cathedral.


In 1962 the Parish Priest was Gordon Albion. During his tenure the church was consecrated by Bishop Cyril Cowderoy on 31 May 1950. The relics sealed in the altar were of St Grata, probably one of the forty-eight martyrs of Lyons, AD 177, and St Lucutisman. Canon Albion (as he later became) was also nurturing missions in Bellfields and Burpham. They became the parishes of Merrow with Burpham and St Mary's Rydes Hill in 1973 and 1978 respectively. In 1959 the Church acquired from the Duke of Sutherland, then owner of Sutton Park, the car park, the field which includes the well and is now the extended graveyard, and the Thomas More ruff now in one of the display cases. These were the years of broadcasting from St Edward's. Programmes were part of the BBC People's Service. The most ambitious was the broadcast of Midnight Mass for Christmas 1957. Mass was of course still in Latin. A further six services were broadcast for the BBC General Overseas service. The services generated thousands of letters, every one of which was acknowledged by Gordon Albion.


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GPS Coordinates: 51.23398, -0.57198

  • Added: 19 Jul 2012
  • Find A Grave Cemetery: #2458294