People Monuments Fittings and Furnishings Early History The Medieval Building The Reformation The Seventeenth and Eighteenth Centuries The South Chapel Restoration and Enrichment 1770 Nineteenth Century Radical Restoration Stained Glass Windows The Twentieth Century The Sharing of the Church Church and Community Hall New Church Roof 2010
The Seventeenth and Eighteenth Centuries
Nothing of note is known about the church in the seventeenth century .The most significant parochial act was the establishment of an endowed Grammar School in 1618 by Richard Lloyd, vicar. The first known schoolmaster was Jeremiah Davies, Curate of Ruabon 1626-1637, and it became customary for successive curates to serve this office until well into the nineteenth century .The Reverend John Robinson, vicar 1675-1703, further endowed the school but in reality his Will changed the character of the school from a grammar school to a bilateral school. It created an endowed grammar school and a The public elementary school under the same roof.
The troubles of the Civil War divided the loyalties of the parishioners. An entry in the burial register for the 8 April 1644 is followed by the note: 'All the rest of the yeares were lost to the souldioures'. What else was lost to the military is not recorded. There is a tradition that Cromwell stayed at Plas Madoc less than a mile from the church. Captain John Lloyd of Plas Madoc was a Royalist member of the Chester garrison. Notable dissenting Parliamentarians were Captain William Wynne, who built Wynne Hall in 1649, and John Kynaston. Sir Thomas Myddleton, the Parliamentarian General, throughout the long wait until the Restoration protected and provided charity for poor scholars, ejected clergy and their families and in particular Humphrey Lloyd, the sequestered vicar, and Edward Pritchard, Curate of Ruabon.
The St Asaph Diocesan Visitation Returns which survive from the beginning of
the eighteenth century show a flourishing community in Ruabon ably led by
its clergy and well supported by its influential laymen. The Reverend
Richard Davies served as vicar for forty years (1706-1746). He repaired the
vicarage and supported by a curate maintained regular services in the parish
church in both the English and Welsh languages and catechized the young. The
sacrament of Holy Communion was administered on the first Sunday in the
month and at the great festivals. The monthly attendance varied between
50-100 and the highest Easter figure recorded is in 1744 when there were 300
communicants. In his Will he followed the example of his predecessor, Vicar
Robinson, and endowed alms houses and gave liberally to the cause of
education and remembered the poor. Of the character and achievements of
Davies's successors in Ruabon for the next hundred years there is very
little which has survived.
Copyright St Mary's Church Ruabon