While researching the putative Roman Road through Weaverham I came to realise the remarkable achievements of Charles E Bebbington: cabinet-make, undertaker, timber treatment pioneer, Sexton, parish clerk, pillar of Weaverham Cricket Club and local historian.
This section should be regarded as a mere placeholder. It has been thrown together from information available on other websites and does not do Mr Bebbington justice.
Charles E Bebbington
Charles Bebbington lived in Poplar Cottage in the High Street. For over a century (1840-1942), it was occupied by the Bebbington family who were cabinetmakers and wood carvers, the last member being Charles Bebbington who was Church Sexton and Parish Clerk at the Parish Church for 39 years.
He published "The Parish Church of Weaverham and its Registers" in The Transactions of the Lancashire & Cheshire Antiquarian Society (TLCAS), Volume 54, p209-250 .
The society has his notes on the numerous talks he gave on various subjects of local history.
In "Timber Decay in Buildings: The Conservation Approach to Treatment" Brian Ridout wrote:
Injection of preservatives into flight holes
has been practised in the past. Notable in this field, and a good example of
the practical approach, was C.E. Bebbington, joiner, cabinet maker, undertaker,
parish clerk and sexton of Weaverham, Cheshire. Bebbington evolved, and
commercially utilized, an exotic formulation which was injected into flight
holes and sealed in with a filler. He apparently developed this treatment
around the turn of the twentieth century and his formulation may even predate
that of Maxwell Lefroy. The formula remained a secret throughout his lifetime,
but it is given in a document retained by his grandson. It can now be reported
that it was a volatile poison containing camphor, formalin and oil of cassia
mixed in wood naptha and diluted with
The relevant section is viewable in Google Books at http://books.google.com/books?id=0hkU03rta7UC&lpg=PP1&pg=PP1#v=onepage&q&f=false
The first recorded President of Weaverham Cricket Club was the Rev. S. R. N. Rees, a curate at the Parish Church and the link with the Parish Church continued until 1929 through successive vicars holding the office of President. It is not, then, surprising that Charles Bebbington also played an important part in the history of the club. He was club captain in 1889 .The following quotes are from the Cricket Club's Centenary book
Charles Edward Bebbington was one of the
mainstays of the Club during the first 60 years of its existence. He served the
Club both as secretary and captain during his playing days and then as chairman
for over 20 years, up to his death in 1943 at the age of 79. Charles Bebbington
was a man of integrity and dignity and was greatly respected by everyone, and
in consequence the Club benefitted immensely from his efforts. A memorial in
his beloved Parish Church of St. Mary's, which he served as Parish Clerk and
Sexton for 39 years, bears the epitaph "He was a good man." This
sentiment is echoed by everyone connected with Weaverham Cricket Club.
Following six successive years as secretary by C. E. Bebbington, the post has
been held by a succession of loyal and efficient members, beginning with a five
year stint by J. Johnson. See
And from the Centenary book , page 8 :
One of the biggest steps taken by the club
was the decision, taken in 1932, to purchase the ground. The rent at that time
was £10 per year. The committee minute book captures so well the varying
emotions and mood of the Special General Meeting on the 22nd February, 1932,
that an extract is repeated here: "The meeting was called on the receipt
of a letter from the solicitors of Mr. Plaice, who having bought the Marbury
Estate (which included the cricket ground), informed us that the ground was for
sale. Mr. M. Fletcher had been corresponding with Mr. Plaice's solicitors and
told the meeting that the ground was for sale for £450. It was thought
that the sum was too big for the club to raise, until Mr. C. E. Bebbington
(chairman) brought forth a telegram which he had received a few hours
previously, stating that Mr. R. Smith-Barry would give half of the cost of the
ground to the club. When this generous offer was received all round, the
meeting discussed as to the best way of raising the other half. Mr. Bebbington
was asked to write to Mr. R. Smith-Barry thanking him for his generous offer.
Decided that the ground be held by Trustees and the Trustees elected were: Mr.
W. R. Birch, Mr. E. Breeze, Mr. M. Fletcher and Mr. F. C. Stubbs." Mr. E.
Breeze, vice president, loaned the club the remaining £225 and the club
paid interest amounting to £12 per year.
The minutes of the Annual General Meeting of
the 22nd April, 1932 records: "A vote of thanks to Mr. Fletcher, Mr.
Smith-Barry, Mr. E. Breeze and Mr. Richmond for the support and valuable help
which they had given the club during the anxious time when the cricket field
was changing hands" and also "A very hearty vote of thanks accorded
to Mr. C. E. Bebbington for his work carried out in co-operation with Mr.
Smith-Barry and Mr. Richmond." The thanks of the present generation of
members are due to these gentlemen and the committee members of that time for
the foresight and generosity shown by them all.