Monuments in churches are physical memorials to the dead.  They can take different forms from elaborate sculptures to a simple commemorative plaque or mural tablet affixed to a wall, such as here in St Paul’s.

Chancel Monuments

Rouse Family

This tablet remembers four members of the Rouse family, brothers Francis and David, and David’s wife Ann and a son Robert. The brothers, together with another (William) were part of the firm of Wm Rouse and Sons, Wool Manufacturers in Bradford, noted for being where Titus Salt learned his trade. The family lived at Eastbrook House near the present Cathedral.

Francis was also a politician, elected as  Bradford Ward Councillor. He was a good horseman and a Cornet in the 2nd West Yorkshire  Cavalry.

David was in the firm and purchased part of the business when it was dissolved after their father’s death.  He purchased Lane Head House at Yeadon and died there in 1852.  His wife Ann continued to live in the house until her death in 1897.

William Brumfit

William Brumfit M.R.C.S. Eng., L.S.A.Lond., was a surgeon based at his house at Baildon Lodge – described as “situated close to the town of Shipley and adjoining the Shipley and Otley turnpike road.” He was admitted to the Royal College of Surgeons in1842 and set up practice in Shipley. He gave evidence to Mr Randall’s 1848 enquiry into the sanitary conditions of Shipley. He was a member of the Independent Order of Odd Fellows.  In 1860 he was appointed by the London Assurance Co, to be their medical examiner in the district. He was probably married – a Mrs W Brumfit of Baildon Lodge helped with a Bazaar at St Paul’s Church, Shipley in 1860 to raise funds.

John Wilmer Field

John Wilmer Field was born in 1775, eldest son of Joshua Field the Lord of the Manor of Heaton, resident at Heaton Hall. John took an BA at Oxford and was an Officer in the Royal Horse Guards, the Blues. He inherited the Manors of Heaton, Upper Helmsley, and others when his father died in 1819. When Dr Cyril Jackson, Lord of the Manor of Shipley died, John Wilmer Field purchased the Lordship from his executors. He married Anne Wharton-Myddleton in 1812 and they had two daughters Mary, born 1813 and Delia born 1814. Anne died in 1815. When a church for Shipley was granted by the Commissioners, John Wilmer Field granted the 1 acre of land for the building. In 1829 he married Isabella Helen, daughter of Captain Slater R.N., but had no further children. John Wilmer Field died in London in 1832 and is buried in a vault under the chancel of St Paul’s, Shipley – the only person to be buried within the church. Both daughters married well.  Mary, who was heir to Shipley and Heaton, wed Lord Oxmantown, who became Earl of Rosse on the death of his elder brother; hence Mary became Countess of Rosse and the considerable lands in Shipley and Heaton passed into the Rosse family. The two daughters had this monument erected in 1838[i].

Margaret Anne Smith

Henry Smith was born in 1821 and died in 1914. He became a church warden at some point. An inscription on the family grave in St Paul’s churchyard reads “To the beloved memory of Margaret Anne, wife of Henry Smith, Shipley Hall only daughter of James Browne, Spring Lodge, Baildon,..”  From this it would seem that the Smiths lived in Shipley Hall (1734) which stood at the junction of Market Street and Otley Road  and later became the headquarters of Windhill Cooperative Society. It was demolished in the 1950s in the development of the town centre and is now the site of the “Sir Norman Rae” (Wetherspoons). The tablet hides a tragically short marriage, for Henry and Margaret were married on 27th April 1848 at St John the Baptist church, Baildon and she died just over a year later on 13th May 1849 at Shipley Hall, aged 23. She is remembered also in one of the east window panels. Henry later moved to Wakefield, but retained an interest in parish affairs.

South Aisle Monuments

William Kelly B.A

Reverend William Kelly M.A. was born circa 1816 at Ireland. He studied at Trinity College, Dublin 1837-8 and was ordained by the Bishop of Ripon in 1842. Vicar of St Paul’s, Shipley, from 1845 – 1884, at 38 years the longest serving vicar. He married Sarah Eleanor Raywood in 1851 at Barnsley, Yorkshire, England. He died in 1884 at Llandudno, Wales, aged 68. Buried in St Paul’s churchyard.

It was said that he was “widely respected and endeared himself by his tact and kindliness.”  Also he was a faithful preacher and a man of genial and uniform temperament, which gained him many friends[ii]. A window in the South Aisle also recalls his memory.

Benjamin Firth F.C.C.M.

F.G.C.M. stands for Fellow of the Guild of Church Musicians. which “exists to encourage all musicians within the church, whether amateur or professional,” Until 1988 the membership was mainly Anglican. Benjamin Firth was born in Idle (presumably Windhill  as he lived there aged 4, and which was part of Idle district at that time). He was associated with St Paul’s for all his life.  Benjamin’s father (Joseph) had been the organist at St Paul’s before him for 33 years, and Benjamin took over from him at the age of 18 years. It was said that during his time in office (45 years) he only missed one Sunday due to illness[iii]. In 1870 he married Alice Caroline PARKER.  They lived in various parts of Shipley with their three children. An index to Yorkshire wills 1901-1920 gives the occupation of Benjamin Firth, died 1910, as “professor of music”. The music on the mural tablet is from The Messiah by George Frederick Handel.

Sarah Anne Elizabeth Parker

Sarah Parker died in 1948.  She is buried in the front graveyard with her husband John who died in 1946. As the graveyard was shut for new graves in 1881, this is quite late. The money she left to the church was referred to as the “Parker Bequest”.

Peel Family

The Peel family lived at Crag Cottage in Windhill. The father, William Peel was born on 14 June 1788 near Laycock, an ancient village west of Keighley. His brother John, eight years older, established some kind of woollen manufacturing business in Windhill and William may have been involved in it. The brothers were listed at Windhill as Woollen Cloth Manufacturers in Baines’1822 Trade Directory. They married sisters Elizabeth and Rebecca Bateson and William and Rebecca’s only child, Henrietta Maria, was born in 1820. Rebecca died in 1830. Henrietta was educated at the Moravian school at Fulneck and then by a governess.  She looked after her father’s house. Henrietta Peel died in 1863. Her father continued to live at Crag Cottage but was bankrupted when, due to fraud, the Leeds Banking Company collapsed. William owned partly paid shares.  He had to surrender all his assets and was ruined.  He went to live at Kildwick and died in late 1866, aged 78. He was buried in the family vault  at St Paul’s Church, Shipley[iv].

Frederick Smart

Mr Smart, was headmaster of the parish Church Day schools for 27 years which position “he filled with excellent ability”.  It was said that his schools were renowned for their superb qualities throughout the district.  He was above all things a true and faithful servant of Jesus Christ and his Church.  He died in Leeds on 20th  February 1921after being operated on for an internal complaint.

North Aisle Monuments

Annie Gell Rhodes

The 1911 census suggests that she was married to Frank William Rhodes and lived in West Riding. A “Faithful worshipper” Annie died in November 1946 and is interred in Hirst Wood cemetery.

Timothy Stocks

The monument to Timothy Stocks was given by Mary, Countess of Rosse. Mary was the elder daughter of John Wilmer Field and Timothy Stocks was Field’s steward.  Hence Mary would have known him all her life. Stocks was born in 1788. As steward he had the responsibility of running the estates.  Until 1865, St Paul’s was the parish church of Heaton. Stocks had standing in the community and served as Overseer for the Poor Law and on a Grand Jury, he subscribed to the Bradford Hospital and gave to charity.  He lived in part of a new wing at Heaton Hall with an extended family and in charge of the servants. Following Field’s death, Stocks remained as agent for the Countess of Rosse.  Timothy Stocks died in 1868 at the age of 80 and is buried with other members of his family in St Paul’s Churchyard.

Monuments In Narthex 

Boer War (O’Donnell, Lister and Jowett)

The memorial (“erected by the inhabitants of Shipley”) records the names of 3 soldiers killed in the 2nd Boer War (1899-1902):  It was unveiled and dedicated by the Lord Bishop of Ripon at 4.45pm on Saturday 4th April 1903 . The ceremony was attended by the Band and members of the 2nd West Yorkshire (Prince of Wales’ Own) Rifle Volunteers in their scarlet jackets,  and the Deputy Lieutenant of the County, as well as many inhabitants of Shipley.

Herbert O’Donnell was born in Shipley in 1880. His father was Bradford born Michael O’Donnell, his mother, Hannah, was from Norfolk and in 1881 he had two brothers, John and James. The family lived at 2 Albert Terrace. In 1901, O’Donnell was a Lance Corporal in the  3rd Battalion Royal Warwickshire Regt, in the South Africa Field Force. Aged 21 when killed, his death is recorded as at Nonskraal, where on Christmas Day 1901 a baggage train was attacked and captured by the Boers. Four, including the Officer and O’Donnell were killed, 5 wounded and 57 taken prisoner. He is buried nearby to the battle.

Higson Lister was born in Shipley 1877 to Hannah and her husband George Lister, a butcher of 32 Briggate, Shipley. In 1891, Higson was the middle of three sons   At some point he joined the Shipley Division of the St John’s Ambulance Brigade, and was posted to South Africa. He died of ‘Enteric’ or typhoid fever. (This was a problem in hot climates. In the Boer Wars more soldiers died of typhus than in battle). Pte Lister is buried in the Churchyard in St John the Baptist Church, Pinetown, a town in KwaZulu-Natal near to Durban, which contains 44 graves of soldiers who died in the nearby Princess Christian Hospital.

Albert Jowett was born in 1875 in Shipley and in 1891 was living at 152 George Street, Saltaire with his parents, Jesse Jowett (39) a dyer, Sarah Ann (42) a weaver and three siblings; Elizabeth (12), Arthur (8) and Wilfred (1)  He joined the 2nd Battalion KOYLI  as a private.  The KOYLI was in South Africa when the second Boer war broke out, having been brought from Mauritius. Arthur too died of enteric and is buried at Elandsfontein where there was a hospital and where the Battalion  may have been based for a while.

Rev J F Longrigg

Rev John Fallowfield Longrigg M.A. was Curate at St Paul’s from 1885 to 1887 (joined by Rev A Middleton in 1886). He was probably responsible for the Mission House at 129 Hargreaves Square as well as general duties. He lived at 58 Thompson Street.

Whilst he was curate at Shipley Parish Church, Rev Longrigg instituted the poor children’s annual Christmas dinner. This was still going in the first World War[v]. He was appointed as vicar of Emmanuel Church, Woodhouse Lane, Leeds and inducted there on 1st November 1887.  His death, less than a year after in September 1888, came as a shock.  This mural of white marble set on a slab of Empress red marble, was the work of Appleyard, a sculptor of Leeds and put up in April 1890.

[i]      The Bradford Observer (Bradford, England), Thursday, August 16, 1838; Issue 237

[ii]     Illustrated Parish Handbook, 1926, p.13.

[iii]    St Paul’s Parish Magazine   August 1910.

[iv]    William Peel  (1788 – 1867) 12:05  31/03/2015

[v]     Saltaire War Diary: 1 January 1915,

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