Services at Pedlinge Chapel of Ease
- Holy Communion 9:00 AM
In 1893 the tin Chapel-of-Ease at Pedlinge was in poor condition so Laurence Hardy, of Sandling Park, decided to rebuild it as a thank-offering “for mercies and blessings received” following the birth of his two sons, Arthur and Maurice and daughter Annis, to his wife Evelyn. The architect Hallam Murray drew up the plans and work commenced in 1903. “On April 17th, Maurice’s first birthday, we had a little ceremony laying the stone with Arthur’s help, aged 9” (visible in the north east corner engraved with Maurice’s initials) A service of dedication was held by the Bishop of Oxford on August 23rd 1903.
Various gifts from the Hardy family have been made to the Chapel over the years. The Chapel’s bell was cast at the family iron works at Lowmoor in Yorkshire. The oak reredos and altar table came from Evelyn’s family home at Thedden in Hampshire “it fitted well and was a great improvement”. Laurence had given it to Theddon “in thanksgiving for my wedding” but the building was now nearly derelict. The alabaster font was made for the christening on the eldest Hardy grandchild Ruth in 1919. The old family bible came from Yorkshire.
Evelyn died in 1911 and Laurence commissioned a stained glass window in her memory. It was made by Powells and shows the family arms of Hardy, Wood, Pennyfather and Dalby across the top. Following Laurence’s death in 1933 Arthur added a window in the opposite wall in memory of his father. In May 1935 the Archbishop came to dedicate the windows.
Arthur shared his father’s love for Pedlinge Chapel and took responsibility for its upkeep. He added a much needed altar rail made by Walker, the estate’s carpenter, and, with help from his wife Nancy and sister Annis, worked on the long tapestry kneelers that are still used today. The lectern fall was embroidered by Pauline Foster with the Hardy arms in memory of Alan, Arthur’s son, who died in 1999.
Arthur handed the Chapel over to Saltwood PCC, with a small trust fund, in 1967.