The rise and progress of the town and the history of its institutions & people.

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No history of East Grrinstead would be complete which did not contain some account of the rise and progress of that beneficent and popular institution known as St. Margaret's, and some outline of the career of the scholarly and remarkable man who founded it. John Mason Neale was born in London, January 24th, 1818. His father was a highly-gifted clergyman and his mother a lady remarkable for her force of character. He was brought up as a strict Evangelical, but after entering Trinity College, Cambridge, in 1836, his views soon broadened and he became a co-founder of the " Cam­bridge Camden," afterwards called " The Ecclesiological Society," its object being to re-construct the visible worship and Church architecture of England. How vast was the work it accomplished is known to all students of Church history. In 1842 Mr. Neale was made a priest and presented to the living of Crawley, but he held it for six weeks only, resigning in consequence of ill-health. The next three years he spent abroad with his wife, who was a Miss Webster and aunt to Lord Alverstone, the present Lord Chief Justice of England. He was far from idle during this time. The amount of literary work he accomplished was marvellous. He wrote magazine articles and pamphlets by the hundred, poems and hymns by the dozen, entered the domain of fiction, but shone most as a Church historian, his uncom­pleted "History of the Holy Eastern Church" gaining him a world-wide reputation and winning him the special thanks of the Czar of Russia, who made him a valuable present in recognition of his great labours. He came to East Grrinstead, as the Warden of Sackville College, in 1846, and here he remained for 20 years, never resting, always devising something for the benefit of his poorer
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