Until the 19th century there was no Anglican church in the village. On 27th February 1869, William Thompson, Archbishop of York issued a licence to the vicar of Sherburn, Rev’d James Matthew to: ‘officiate in the drawing room of a house occupied by Mr Joseph Bartle situate at Barkstown (sic) in the parish of Sherburn’.
This was fine as far as it went but the licence did not allow the sacraments to be administered and soon there was a move towards the provision of a permanent building.
Mr William Squire, a local gentleman farmer, donated a suitable plot.
Trustees were appointed, their task to see that a Chapel of Ease should be erected and to provide a churchyard which ‘should not be used for burials but be kept as an ornamented and unbuilt on piece of ground’. There were no grants available and the costs were met by voluntary contribution.
The date of the completion of the building is not known but on 13th April 1878 the Archbishop of York gave a licence to the Rev’d James Matthew, vicar of Sherburn with Micklefield and Lotherton to officiate.
The first children to be baptised were John and George Liddle on 18th September 1881.
The services were accompanied by a harmonium and in 1907 a pipe organ was installed, powered by a blower – this can still be seen on the side of the organ.
Electricity was installed in 1939 with electric lighting replacing the oil lamps and in 1964 electric heating replaced the coke oiler. An electric blower replaced manpower for the organ in the early 1970’s.
At the back of the church there is a garden, maintained by members of the village and there is an area for the burial of cremated ashes. Thus fulfilling the original intention of the donors.
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