Under the Heavy Clouds

The Church of England in Derbyshire and Nottinghamshire 1911-1915: the Parochial Visitation of Edwyn Hoskyns, Bishop of Southwell

by Michael Austin

Between 1911 and 1915 Edwyn Hoskyns, the second bishop of Southwell, carried out a comprehensive visitation of his diocese, which then included Derbyshire as well as Nottinghamshire. As he completed his inspection of each deanery, Hoskyns wrote a detailed report on his findings which was published in the diocesan magazine. This volume brings together those reports, prefaced by a lengthy analytical introduction, and supported by a very full list of churches and chapels in the diocese in 1912.

Together the introduction, reports and appendix provide a wealth of factual and statistical information about the Church in both counties on the eve of the First World War, and also reveal the bishop's views on social, economic and theological questions as they affected his diocese. These include such topics as strikes in the coal industry, rural depopulation, the threat to Sunday observance created by trippers in the Peak District, and the Church's mission to the working-class districts of Nottingham and Derby. The book thus provides a fascinating glimpse of many aspects of life in the two counties during the Edwardian period, not merely the fortunes of the C of E.

The Revd Canon Michael Austin BA, MA, PhD served in parishes in Birmingham and Derby before teaching theology at Bishop Lonsdale College (now part of Derby University) and training clergy. A fellow of the Royal Historical Society, he has been a canon of both Derby and Southwell cathedrals and has published widely in Church history, theology and aesthetics. Before he retired in 1998 he was the Archbishops’ Adviser for Bishops’ Ministry.

Michael Austin is also the author of Almost Like A Dream and A Time of Unhappy Commotion

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Paperback 240pp with a frontispiece
and full-colour cover

ISBN 1 898937 63 X