Co-Workers. The first Wesleyan Chapel was built in 1811. For probably a generation there had been a number of earnest souls who deplored the state of affairs, and desired to benefit their fellows, and in that year they plucked up courage to build according to their ability. It was a black year. The great comet was glaring in anger from the heavens; Napoleon was cursing the continent with war; our King was losing his reason ; the Prince Regent was leading a life of profligate excess ; trade was at a stand-still; bread was dear ; the frame-smashing was beginning,— an effort must be made to save, or help a few. The work was continued by a number of earnest men whose names may be seen later on (see page 226). The present chapel was built in 1882, and cost £3500, the principal workers being Miss Wood, Miss Charles and Mrs. C. Glover.

The Baptist cause is believed to have commenced in Bulwell about 1808, by Mr. Garton (see page 224) and in 1810 a chapel was built, which was afterwards converted into two houses, when in 1827 a second chapel was built, and this was replaced by the present one in 1876, at a cost of £2200, and the Sunday Schools have since been attached (see page 227). In 1904 improvements, involving an outlay of £1540, were made. The first minister was the Rev. C. I). Crouch. The Rev. W. Slater, who became the minister in 1891, was elected on the Nottingham School Board. He made a useful effort in the great coal strike to benefit the women and children. The present minister is the Rev. T. Murray.

The Methodist New Connexion was founded in 1797, and its founder, the Rev. A. Kilham, preached his last sermon in Bulwell in 1798. There was a very small interest until 1834, when the Rev. A. Padley gave 510 yards of land on "the Green," and in 1888 the memorial stone was laid by Dr. John Higginbottom, F.R.S., the teetotal doctor, and the building cost £300. A new chapel was built in 1882, at a cost of £2300 The name of the denomination is now "The United Methodist Church." Another chapel was built in 1902.

The Church of Christ, commonly called the New Testament Disciples built a small chapel in 1843, and a succeeding one in 1875 cost £1500 (see W. J. Dawson, p. 230). Another chapel was built in 1910.

The Primitives' cause was introduced to Bulwell by Sarah Kirkland, who preached from a cart in a field. A chapel was built in 1852 on land in Quarry Road, given by the Rev. A. Padley. The present church was built in 1887, the cost being £2000. It is intended to build a school and hall. Mr. C. Gaunt has held office, or has been a worker there, 44 years. Another chapel was built in 1880.

The Salvation Army occupied the old Wesleyan chapel, and in 1908 erected their present building. They are seeking to rescue the bottom row.

In connection with each of the foregoing churches or societies are a number of efforts for promoting religion, education, character building, benevolence, temperance, etc. All the churches and agencies are forces for good. They all carry one and the same message from the loving God to suffering humanity. They all work by the same power, and that the only power that can lift a bruised, helpless, and hopeless soul out of the pit into which he may have fallen, into light, liberty, love, and spiritual health, strength and joy. With one book for their guide, one aim for their motive, one end for their destiny, their labours promote the good of the people, and Bulwell would be poorer in their absence. Would that it were possible to present one united front to the powers of darkness: not of organic union, or of uniformity in doctrine and ceremony, but a blessed union of hearts in work—work for God and man.

Registers. The Church Registers of births and deaths, I am informed, do not contain much of general interest. These date back to 1621. The Registers of marriages from 1635 to 1812 have been transcribed by Mr. F. A. Wadsworth, and printed and published by Messrs. Phillimore & Blagg, 1906. In 1752 the old style ceased, and the scribe notes that September that year had only 19 days, the 3rd had become the 14th, and from the 2nd to the 14th had been annihilated, and the year began on the first of January.

Sunday Schools.  According to the report of the Nottingham Sunday School Union, there are in Bulwell, in association with that Union, eight schools, having 209 teachers, and 2503 scholars.

Bands of Hope. As given in the report of the Band of Hope Union these are nine in number, teaching the unwisdom of spending money on alcohol or tobacco. There is a Good Templar Lodge; an Adult Sunday Morning Class, and a Women's Class on Sunday Afternoon; also a Homestead, or Social Club-house.

The Old Grammar School dates from 1669 (photo: A Nicholson, 2005).
The Old Grammar School dates from 1669 (photo: A Nicholson, 2005).

Schools. The "Free School" is the most interesting old building in Bulwell. George Strelley, Esq., apparently erected it in 1667, the year before he died, and his crest, with the Strelley Saracen's Head, was placed above the porch. This is a fine specimen of early brick work. The school-rooms were to the left on entering the porch, with the general entrance at the back, in the schoolyard, and the rest of the building was the master's residence. The number of children was limited to thirty, and in addition to teaching the catechism, and a chapter in the Bible being read daily, and instruction in the Latin tongue, they were to be taught "to write and read written hand and to cypher and cast accounts." Mr. Strelley had very good ideas of discipline, for while the master was directed to use the scholars who were "capable of learning and willing to learn, mildly and with gentleness," he had no sympathy with the notion that children may be allowed to do as they please, and not be corrected, for "those that are perverse, and stubborn, and not willing to be taught, to such the master is to give due correction with the rod for their quickening on to learning." The first master was James Wylde, and the last was Joseph Calladine, and his assistant was Ben Collins, who had a singular way of correcting disobedient scholars, for his right hand being paralyzed, he lifted it up with his left hand, and let it fall with striking force on the body of the offender. Mr. Harry Gill has given illustrations of the building, in the "Transactions of the Thoroton Society," 1907, page 105.

For many years no new trustees were appointed, and it is said that towards the close there were only a few scholars not paying fees.

When Mr. Calladine died the question arose as to new trustees being appointed, and an appeal was made to the Charity Commissioners, and an enquiry held Some parishioners favoured an extended scheme, with new buildings, and a transfer of the property, but the difficulties were considerable, for free places must be provided, and the Commissioners decided in favour of scholarships.

The Strelley scheme provides for the governing body to consist of six persons, two of them being appointed by the Rector and Churchwardens, one by the School Board of Nottingham, one by the Governors of the Nottingham High School, and two Co-optative Governors, the first being the Rev. W. H. Cantrell, and Charles Seely the younger, of Sherwood Lodge, M P., and future Co-optative Governors, by the general body of Governors The income is to be utilized for scholarships. Exhibitions are to be awarded on a competitive examination in Religious Knowledge, including the Catechism of the Church of England, reading, writing (including transcription, dictation and composition) arithmetic, English grammar, modern history and geography,—and for girls, needlework. These are of £15 each, available at the Nottingham High Schools.

The schoolroom was used for Sunday School purposes for boys, who were taken thence to the Parish Church for the service, but the girls' Sunday School was held in a building now used for joinery purposes in Aslin's Yard, and facing to Fisher's Lane.

The old school is an illustration of the adage, "That which is best administered is best." It is to the credit of George Strelley that 200 years before others awoke to the need for village education he, according to his measure, made provision for it, but for want of proper supervision, and the appointment of new and energetic trustees, the endowed school sank into being known as "Calladine's school," being used only as a means of getting a living.

National Schools. The Squire of Bulwell, Mr. Cooper, with the Rector, the Rev. W. H Cantrell, and other churchmen, decided in 1865-6 to build a school in connection with the Church, and so the National School, with the master's house, was built at a cost of £8000, providing for 518 children. Further sums were afterwards spent, and in 1911, in order to bring the schools up to date, £750 was spent, being raised by subscriptions. The school was built on the site of the village Green, which from time immemorial had been the children's playground, open and unenclosed. The promoters spent ten times the value of the land in the buildings they put on for the public good, and which have well served their purpose ever since, but it would have been better had they left the Green as an open space, and built the school on another site. It is only fair however to state that the Green was then a lost piece of ground, with none of the spirit of play now prevailing.

Private Schools. There were in 1815 the Misses Walsh, two maiden ladies, who kept a superior school for girls at Beech House; there is a "sampler" of that date, made by Mary Hepworth Stout, and having adornments of birds, trees, a bower, and becoming poetical lines, which Mr. Wilkinson now has. In 1832 Edwin J. Pickering had a boarding academy, and Robert Heaton had a school. In 1844 in addition to Mr. Calladine, Benjamin Collins, William Dawson, and Thomas Sleath appear as schoolmasters. In 1871 Mr. White had a small school.

British School. Upon the passing of the Education Act a move ment was, in 1870, set on foot for a School Roard, which was defeated by a majority It was therefore determined by the Nonconformists to start, in 1871, a British School, and twenty men advanced £20 each in order to buy the old match factory premises. To adapt and furnish, the following gentlemen gave donations:—Messrs. J. E. Ellis £25, Samuel Morley £25, B. Walker £25, Messrs. Heymann £10 each, and many other sums, amounting to £200 Mr. Brown from the Borough Road Training College was appointed first teacher, and the school continued until 1877, when it was taken over by the Nottingham School Board, firstly in the premises which are now a part of the Dye Works of Messrs. Bromley & Co., and afterwards, for temporary purposes in the Baptist schoolrooms.

Council Schools. The Nottingham School Board proceeded in 1880  to build two large and well-appointed sets of schools at a cost, including fittings, of £26,000: Coventry Road, providing for 1822 children, and Quarry Road for 885. Albert Street schools were built by the Nottingham Education Committee in 1906, for 1038, at a cost of over £15,000. Evening classes are held at Albert Street schools on three evenings in a week, on a two years course, with a superintendent, and twelve instructors, giving a useful commercial course, and for girls domestic economy, a better term being home-making. It would be of great advantage if all employers would set the young people free for these classes, making attendance obligatory.

There are in Bulwell, as elsewhere, three divergent views as to religious instruction to be imparted in day schools. One class desires that the religious instruction should include teaching as to sacraments and ceremonies, and special church forms and doctrines. Another class would have all religious teaching banished from the day school, and be imparted only in churches and Sunday schools; while a third class says— Let us have in the day school the religion taught which requires doing justly, loving mercy, and walking humbly with God,—the religious motive stimulating the conscience to the performance of all moral duties, and to the building up of noble characters, but leaving sacramental teaching and special church forms and doctrines to other places and times. They urge that religious instruction to the extent named ought to bej and must be, taught by the teachers in our everyday schools, and that to ignore, or neglect this, would be perilous to both the children and the state.

The threefold nature of the child, it is further urged, must in the future receive equal attention, as the development of body, mind and conscience are all so important that neglect hampers the child for life. Physical instruction for present and future guidance is deemed essential to health, and "the health of the child is the wealth of the nation." There used to be a physical instructor, and classes and lectures on bodily exercises and hygiene. Are there such now? Health duly guarded, it is claimed, is far better than doctor's medicine when the mischief is done. All that pertains to handiness, and dexterity in the use of tools, and in the development of the chest, are as important as book learning, and being trained to think is better than a fortune.

Library. At the Public Offices is a Reading Room at which there was, according to the printed report in the year 1912-13, an estimated attendance of 61,500 persons. At the Lending Library was an attendance of 19,761, and at the Boys' and Girls' Library 11,938. The accommodation provided for the purpose is very unsatisfactory, and ought to be improved. This is recognized by the City Council, and much better premises are in prospect.