The William Chester Charity
The will of William Chester was proved on 7th July 1703, leaving 68 acres and a farm known as Chester Farm Barkestone le Vale for the benefit of the poor in the Parishes of Barkestone, Knipton, Croxton, Buckminster, Burton and Harby. The income was to be divided into firstly, maintenance of the property, and the remainder divided into five shares. Barkestone, Knipton, Croxton, and Buckminster to receive one share each, Burton 2/3 of one share and Harby 1/3 of one share. The object of the will was to provide Bibles for children and to benefit the poor in the parishes.
This year (2003) in December is the 300th anniversary of the first benefits from this will paid on 10th December 1703, and there will be a Service of Commemoration in Barkestone Church on 14th December 2003.
The Edward Hallam Charity
Edward Hallam was a citizen of London but was born locally. The revenue from some invested money left in his will of 1683 was to be divided into six shares, 1/6 to the minister, 1/6 to children (catechised) and 4/6 to the poor of the parish.
The Ann Parnham Charity
Ann Parnham's will of 14th January 1837 left to churchwardens and overseers of the poor in the parish the sum of £250 to be invested and interest used to maintain her gravestone, and the remainder distributed annually to widow women in the parish on St Thomas's Day, 21st December. Interest from a further £150 invested was to be used for the education of seven poor children. This is now paid to the local village school.
There are a number of active charities operating in the town. Please check the Charity Commission website for details.