Religious Census of Cumbria, 1851
Cumberland, Westmorland and Furness
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Publisher: Surtees Society
Number of Pages: 487
Width: 13.8 cm
Height: 21.6 cm
In 1851, for the only time in British history, a count of those attending any place of religious worship was held alongside the usual decennial census of the population. Its purpose was to investigate the extent of church and chapel attendance, and to identify where more places of worship were required - but as an incidental consequence, it also identified the strengths and weaknesses of nearly forty religious bodies, overwhelmingly of Christian churches,but also including the Jewish community. The figures suggested that something like a quarter of the population had then chosen not to attend a place of worship, a striking finding in an allegedly religious age. This volume isan edition of the census for Cumberland, Westmorland and Furness. An introduction sets the census in context; a detailed description of each place of worship follows, showing for instance the numbers who attended the various churches, the age of the church, its endowment if any, and comments from those who completed the form. The census returns are supplemented with notes, and also by a list of those places of worship overlooked by the census. ALAN MUNDEN is an Anglican clergyman; he has served in parishes in Cheltenham, Coventry and Jesmond, in all three places writing extensively on aspects of local ecclesiastical history.