Stowe’s WW1 connection

Now it’s summertime, a lot of ‘closed’ churches do have special opening times, though sadly they don’t publicise these as much as they might.
If you hear of any Staffordshire churches opening especially for certain days over the summer, would you email us to let us know?

Stowe by Chartley

One church that is generally open during daylight hours, winter & summer, is Stowe by Chartley.

A number of World War One historians have been turning up there recently after the church wardens there realised there was a strong connection.
Recently a letter written by General Sir Walter Congreve turned up, in which he mentioned the famous Christmas truce of 1915, when soldiers from both sides of the front-line fraternised in no man’s land.

Well, General Sir Walter Congreve is remembered at Stowe-by-Chartley church in a memorial virtually opposite the minister’s seat.
Alerted of this, the Revd Steven Abram then spoke to the principal archivist at the Staffordshire Records Office, Andrew George, who “enthusiastically supported us and kindly prepared a display along with a replica of the original letter”.   The replica letter is now by the memorial.

The Rev Abram added: “People are very welcome to come and see it all throughout the year. The church is normally open during daylight hours”.

General Congreve

General Congreve is not actually buried in Stowe, as he died at sea off the island of Malta.  Curiously, the only other memorial to him is there in the Mediterranean.
He and the family lived for a time in nearby Chartley Hall.

See full article in the Lichfield Diocese Spotlight Magazine 


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