MONOUX AS FOUNDER OF THE GRAMMAR SCHOOL AND ALMSHOUSES.
It may be interesting if I introduce the following account of the Monoux Grammar School by giving a summary from the Founder's own book of the beginning of the School and the Almshouses. A Record of Delivery was made on the third Sunday in June, 19 Henry VIII. by the prior and convent of Christchurch, London, patrons and owners of the rectory and vicarage of Walthamstow, Essex, with the consent of Thos. Hickman, LL.B., incumbent there of a piece of ground on the north side of the Churchyard of Walthamstow, for the erection of 14 rooms for a schoolmaster and 13 poor men and women. "All whiche premises I will shalbe always for ever ordered-and kepte by my executors and feofees of my last w lle and testament." When the building was finished we do not know. ' Here then in 1527 we have the beginning of the Monoux Grammar School and the Monoux Almshouses, buildings with which we are all so familiar, and whose bricks and tiles have mellowed to a delightful red, presenting a charming picture when seen through the greenery of the churchyard. The piece of ground so granted was in length, from east to west, 192 feet; in breadth, at the east end 40 feet; in the middle and at the west end, 34 feet. The Faculty for the grant of the ground is in the London Register of Bishop Tunstall. Fol. 151.
It will be gathered from earlier remarks that Monoux was a man of considerable wealth, and he followed the example of other wealthy London citizens by endowing almshouses and a school. One needs but a slight acquaintance with the history of the Tudor period to realise that the Renascence manifested itself by the impetus given to education as well as the quickening of ecclesiastical life, It is quite probable that Monoux was led to found his Grammar School by the example of Colet, dean of St. Paul's; 1504-19, who founded St. Paul's School, 1509, and : wrote for it a Latin Accidence. There is not space in this sketch of the work of Monoux to do more than mention some of, the educational improvements of that period; but to those who wish further to pursue this question of Schools at the Reformation, 1 would recommend Mr. Leach's book on the subject. In that valuable work we are told that of 204 schools mentioned in the Chantry Certificates, 132 still exist, though 19 of them have been degraded to Elementary Education, and four are only Exhibition Funds. It is certainly of great interest- to us that the Monoux School has lived through four centuries and that its work has left its mark on our town.
THE ENDOWMENT OF THE MONOUX FOUNDATIONS.
Now we will consider the question of the Endowment of the Almshouses and Grammar School, which must be treated as one foundation for many purposes. George Monoux was possessed of "divers messuages and tenements, lands and hereditaments" within the ward of Langbourne in the City of London, and " were situate near the Church of All Hallows Staining, in a certain lane there called Craddock Lane, otherwise Star Alley, leading into Mark Lane, and from thence turning by the Church on the left-hand side into Fenchurch Street." This property in London and the suburbs was left to Trustees-Giles Bragg, Robert Alford, Edward Brooke, William Monoux, Richard Monoux and Richard Vaughan. The property so devised produced about £50 a year, and with this sum the trustees were to keep in repair, among other buildings, a Chapel and the Almshouses built by Monoux, and to pay out £42 17s. 4d. for the following purposes :-
(a)To an honest priest, who should keep the Free School of young children (20 to 30), and to sing and pray " for the soul of me, George Monoux, and Dame Anne Monoux, and Joan Monoux my late wife, and for the soul of Robert Watts, sometime the husband of the said Dame Ann "
£6. 13 4
(b) To the Parish Clerk, in case he assists in teaching £1. 6. 8
(c) To 13 Alms Poor, 8 men and 5 women, 7d. to each weekly, per ann £5. 0. 0
d) To ditto. ditto in Coals £19 14 4
(e) To the Priest for an Obit £5 13 4
Sub total .£38. 7. 8
Thus leaving a residue of .£4. 9. 8
Total £42. 17. 4
*The Schoolmaster was also to "pay the almsfolk 7d. each weekly, and see that they kept the rules, and said duly their 5 Paternosters, 5 Aves, and a Creed daily in honour of the 5..prineipall wounds of our Lord Jesus Christ:"