In the course of our work as historians we all incur a range of debts – to colleagues, to librarians and archivists, to family and friends. The size and collaborative nature of the CCEd Project mean that we have incurred more and greater debts than most. The first, and greatest debt, is undoubtedly to the colleagues who have worked with us on the Project, and in particular to the Research Assistants who have extracted the core data from record offices across the country. We shall not list all of them here – details of all those who have worked on the Project, listed by the diocese where they were Research Assistants, can be found on the Personnel page – but our debt to them is incalculable. Without the hours of hard work that they put in, for very little reward, the Database simply could not have been constructed. Some have taken on an enormous amount of work – who they are will be apparent to any users who spend hours working on the basic records that make up the Database. Some have performed an invaluable service by acting as evangelists for the Project, persuading others to become Research Assistants. Others have alerted us to sources of which we were unaware, or have put often unrivalled knowledge of the histories of their localities at our disposal. One of the early stalwarts of the team of Research Assistants, Maunder Wide, embodied all that has been so valuable and important about our collaboration with researchers in the localities. He was among the very first of the Research Assistants to be recruited to work in Chichester, extracting many of the records from at the West Sussex Record Office, before moving on to sources at what was then still called the Public Record Office. He alerted us to the importance of the clerical subsidy returns (TNA, E179) to supplement the shortcomings of some diocesan collections including, as it turned out, unrivalled lists ofcurates in the Elizabethan period, which helped to fill a major gap in the coverage of the Database. Our gratitude to Maunder is matched only by our regret that his death in 2001 meant that he was unable to see the fruits of his work become public.
The Project Directors also need to record their debt to those people who have served as the Project Research Officers during the course of the project, manning the Project Office (which has itself moved between London, Canterbury and Reading) since we began work in 1999 and in recent months assisting the Project Directors in the essential and demanding tasks of checking, uploading and linkage. Peter Yorke played an important part in helping to get the Project off the ground. In 2003 he was succeeded by Mary Clayton and Tim Wales, whose complementary talents contributed immeasurably to the latter stages of Phase 1 of the Project. Mary, who has assumed the role of managing the Project Office and (a much more challenging proposition) the Project Directors, has come to represent an important element in the public face of the Project, responding to many of the queries generated by the website. Tim’s forensic skills are less obviously visible to the public, but are essential in ensuring the consistency and accuracy of the data. We are fortunate that they are continuing to work for CCEd Phase 2.
The bulk of the record linkage has been carried out by the Project Directors and the Project’s Research Officers, Mary Clayton and Tim Wales. But we are also grateful to Rob Pearson and Daniel Cummins for their work linking data for the dioceses of Salisbury and Bath and Wells.
What has been achieved so far would have been impossible without another collaboration, with record offices and archives across the country, especially those that act as diocesan archives. As the Project Directors toured the country, making their initial survey of the available records, we never encountered anything less than the full co-operation of archivists and the courteous assistance of their staff in the face of the frankly unreasonable demands that we made for enormous numbers of manuscripts in a very short space of time. Subsequently, the Record Offices were incredibly helpful in facilitating our recruitment and training of Research Assistants (in some cases opening specially to allow us to run a training session) and then providing advice and support to the Research Assistants while they were working on their records; many have made special arrangements to provide us with copies of manuscripts that could not be extracted in situ. In many cases the genuine enthusiasm shown by archivists for the Project, both for itself and as a resource that would be valuable to them and their user communities, helped to sustain us in our work. We would, accordingly, like to record our enormous gratitude to: the Borthwick Institute (especially David Smith and Chris Webb), the Bodleian Library, Bristol Record Office (especially Richard Burley), the British Library, Cambridge University Library (especially Peter Meadows), Canterbury Cathedral Archives (especially Cressida Annesley, Heather Forbes and Michael Stansfield), the Centre for Kentish Studies (especially Miss Rowsby), the Chapel Royal, Whitehall Palace (especially David Baldwin), Cheshire Record Office (especially Jonathan Pepler), Christ Church Library, Oxford (especially Judith Curthoys), the Library of Corpus Christi College, Cambridge (especially Gill Cannell), Cumbria Record Office at Carlisle (especially David Bowcock), Devon Record Office (especially John Draisey, Dorset Record Office, Durham Cathedral Library, Durham University Library(especially Margaret McCollum and Alan Piper), Exeter Cathedral Library (especially Angela Doughty, Gloucestershire Record Office (especially Kate Haslem), the Guildhall Library (especially Stephen Freeth), Hampshire Record Office (especially Sarah Lewin), Herefordshire Record Office (especially Rhys Griffith Elizabeth Semper-O’Keefe), Hereford Cathedral Library (especially Rosalind Caird), Hertfordshire Archives and Local Studies, Lambeth Palace Library (especially Richard Palmer and Melanie Barber), Lancashire Record Office, Lichfield Record Office (especially Martin Sanders), Lincoln Cathedral Library (especially Nicholas Bennett), Lincolnshire Archives (especially Mike Rogers), London Metropolitan Archives, Medway Archives and Local Studies Centre (especially Stephen Dixon), Manx National Heritage (especially Wendy Thirkettle), the National Archives (especially Sarah Tyacke), the National Library of Wales (especially Michael Pearson), Norfolk Record Office (especially John Alban), Northamptonshire Record Office (especially Sarah Bridges), Nottingham University Library (especially Caroline Kelly), Nottinghamshire Archives Office, Oxfordshire Record Office (, especially Carl Boardman), Peterborough Cathedral Library, the Library of The Queen’s College, Oxford (especially Amanda Saville), St Paul’s Cathedral Library (especially Jo Wisdom), Shropshire Archives, Somerset Record Office (especially Tom Mayberry), Southampton Archive Service (especially Joanne Smith), Southwell Minster Library, West Sussex Record Office (especially Alison and Tim McCann and Peter Wilkinson), West Yorkshire Archive Service ,Wiltshire and Swindon Record Office (especially Steve Hobbs and Rob Pearson), Worcester Cathedral Library (especially David Morrison), Worcestershire Record Office (especially Tony Wherry and Robin Whittaker), and York Minster Library (especially Peter Young).
The collaboration between our three institutions – the University of Kent at Canterbury, King’s College London, and the University of Reading – has been facilitated by the support of our three departments and our respective research offices. At King’s College London the role of the Centre for Computing in the Humanities (CCH) has been central to the Project. Harold Short and his team, details of which are on the Personnel page, have worked tirelessly over the years developing not only the public website but also a range of tools for collecting, uploading and linking the data. We have also benefited through being able to share ideas and approaches with a number of other computer-based prosopographical projects housed in CCH, notably the Prosopography of the Byzantine Empire (PBE) and the Prosopography of Anglo-Saxon England (PASE).
The genesis of the Project can be found in discussions at some early meetings of the Church of England Record Society about the desirability of publishing lists of clergy. Subsequently, during the mid-1990s, a number of informal meetings took place, at which some other colleagues – Melanie Barber, Patrick Carter – were present, and we are very grateful to them for their comments and suggestions. It was, however, the formation of the Arts and Humanities Research Board that provided the opportunity – and the impetus – to develop a grant proposal. At this stage the advice of John Morrill and the late Colin Matthew were invaluable. We are enormously grateful to the Arts and Humanities Research Board for funding the first phase of the Project, which began in October 1999 and concluded in September 2005, and then for supporting Phase 2, which began in March 2005. Over the years many people have provided valuable advice and comments, and we would particularly like to thank James Bell, Bill Campbell, Patrick Carter, Claire Cross, Tom Freeman, Tim Hitchcock, Julian Hoppitt, Joyce Horn, Ludmilla Jordanova, Martin Jones, Peter Mandler, Basil Twigg, Jane Winters, and John Walsh.
We owe a special debt to a number of colleagues, who have added considerably to the Project by generously making available the fruits of their research. Alec Ryrie of the University of Birmingham has provided us with a copy of his database of entries for compositions for first fruits for 1541–7 (The National Archives, E344/2 and E135/10/33). These sources contain evidence of institutions, and also list sureties, thereby providing additional evidence of patronage and clientage links. The material will be a valuable supplement to evidence already in CCEd, especially as diocesan records for the early 1540s are very uneven. We are currently working on the incorporation of Alec Ryrie’s database into the CCEd master database.
Dr Brian Crosby has generously supplied us wirth a copy of his unpublished work, ‘Minor Canons and certain other clergy associated with Durham Cathedral 1541–1812’ a meticulous piece of scholarship which will be indispensable when we link records for Durham diocese.
The Malvern Family History Group has created databases of the indexes of presentation papers and ordination papers that are part of the diocesan archive at the Worcestershire Record Office. Copies of these files have also been generously made available to us by David Williams and the Group and we are working on including them into the CCEd master database. Copies of the material, on CD-Rom in Excel files, can also be obtained from the Malvern Family History Group.
Dr John Morgan Guy, who compiled a card index of the clergy of the diocese of Llandaff as part of his research for a PhD thesis on that diocese in the latter part of the period covered by CCEd, has kindly made available that index to the Project team. Dr Guy has consulted a wider range of sources than those used by CCEd, and his index is proving invaluable in the task of linking the records for Llandaff.
A similar biographical register of the clergy of Derbyshire between 1558 and 1662 has been compiled by Dr Richard Clark, who has also generously made his work available to the Project. It too will prove an invaluable tool during the process of record linkage for the diocese of Lichfield, and Dr Clark has also given permission for his work to be quoted and cited in the Comment field for ‘person’ entries.
A number of users of the Database have already provided us with information that elaborates or corrects information that we have published. We hope that this merely marks the beginning of a process of collaboration that will enhance the value of the CCEd. Where appropriate such material is included, with acknowledgment, in the Comment field of the ‘person’ entries. For the material that has been provided so far we would like to thank Sarah Reveley.