Other Memorials

B. Bryan. Matlock Manor and Parish, records the inscriptions on all the memorial tablets in the church existing at the date of publication. (1903). Since then three large stone panels have been fixed to the wall of the north aisle recording the names of the Matlock men who fell in the First World War.

In the Lady Chapel an alabaster tablet has the inscription:

Ad majorem Dei gloriam/ et in piam memoriam/ Charlottae/ Edward Shefford Lyttel/ conjugis dilectissimae/ quae/ in brachia sempiterna Christi/ transmigravit/ a.d. quint. Id. Oct. MCMXV/ Et laetati sunt quia requiescunt/ et deduxit eos in portum optabilem.

(To the greater glory of God and in dutiful memory of Charlotte, the beloved wife of Edward Shefford Lyttel, who passed over into the everlasting arms of Christ on 11th October 1915. ‘Then are they glad, because they are at rest: and so he bringeth them unto the haven where they would be’.)

The quotation is from Psalm 107 and does not follow the Latin of the Vulgate, the standard text of St Jerome’s version of the Bible, but appears to be a translation from the English of the Prayer Book as given above.

A memorial in the Guild Chapel is worthy of special attention. Its inscription reads:

To the Memory/ of/ Captn W. Cumming of the 83d British Regt/ and 9th Portugese Cacadoros/ who/ having fought in the Battles/ of/ Oporto, Talavera, Buzaco/ and Fuentes de Onoro,/ fell in an attack on the French outposts/ near Bayonne,/ October 9 1813,/ in the 30th Year of his Age/ This Tablet was erected by his Brothers/ in whose esteem and affection he had/ that place to which Firmness/ of Mind and Urbanity of/ Manners justly entitle/ their Possessor.

This memorial which had become dirty and difficult to read was cleaned and conserved in 2008 by the Skillington Workshop. The cleaning revealed that the Derbyshire alabaster of the ‘Gothick’ detail was remarkably pure and white for its late date and that the main panel is almost certainly formed from the local Ashford Black Marble. It may be compared with the memorial on the north wall of the sanctuary in the chancel. Regrettably – from the historian’s point of view – the Cumming family do not appear in the parish registers at the end of the eighteenth, or the beginning of the nineteenth, century although Benjamin Bryan’s History of Matlock records that ‘James Cumming, in practice as a surgeon at Buxton but a native of Matlock’ was drowned in a boating accident on the River Derwent in 1852 and that his mother had kept the Old Bath Hotel at Matlock Bath. James and his mother may, or may not, of course, have been related to the William of the memorial but it seems reasonably probable that they were. The cost of the work to the memorial was defrayed by contributions from Matlock Town Council, the Ernest Bailey Trust and the national War Memorials Trust as well as from private individuals.

In the chancel are brasses to two former Rectors. That to Henry Smith reads:

Hic iacet Hen/ricus: Smith quo/ndam istius Ecc/lesiae Rector qui/ mortem obit: Anno/ Doni 1640/ Divinus Medicus Musicus.

(His will dated 1634 bequeathed all his books and instruments to his nephew ‘hoping that his father would breed him up a scholar’.)

The other brass commemorates Joseph Fern who died in 1717.