History of st Paul's
The first part of St Paul's church was built during 1790-1791 and was officially consecrated on the 9th of July 1791. There had been a chapel on the same site, but it had fallen into disrepair and the building was being used by a blacksmith. In fact it is thought that the painting by the well known artist Joseph Wright entitled “The Blacksmith’s Shop” is based on what he found on a visit to Little Eaton in 1771. In the 1780s serious discussions were started among the community (which at that time numbered around 250) about building a church, and it was decided appeal for public subscriptions. A small rectangular church was built, covering just the nave of the present building, and without a tower. Where the step is now up into the chancel is where the altar was situated, in front of a curved apse. The round window high up at the back of the church was included to give light to the gallery above the door where the choir and musicians sat.
Near the entrance is the Font, where children are baptised in a service where parents and godparents make promises to God on their child’s behalf, to teach the child the truth about the love and grace of God. They and the rest of the church family also promise to pray that the child will grow up to understand the gospel and accept it for themselves. It is believed that the font dates from 1790’s.
The Radford Family
The Pulpit and Lectern
In 1851 the chancel (the front of church) was built, and the floor was raised in 1880 when a new communion table and the choir stalls were added. The stained glass windows in the chancel were paid for by the Tempest family who by the 1850s had turned Peckwash Mill into what was said to be the largest paper making factory in the country. The central window shows Christ on the cross, where he took the punishment for our sins on himself and died in our place. Although we didn’t deserve to be rescued, God sacrificed his own sinless Son so that we might be forgiven. The grace of God and the death and resurrection of Christ is remembered with thanks each time we come to the communion table to take communion.
The North Aisle
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