Correspondence Between Thomas Thurtell and Rev. Norton Nicholls


There was bad blood between the Thurtell brothers and the Rev. Norton Nicholls, Rector of Bradwell and Lound. They quite obviously resented having to pay tithes to support the man of the cloth, as to whose "ability and general conduct" they nurtured grave doubts. Unlike a Vicar, a Rector depended on tithes for his livelihood. Nicholls held at least two parishes (Bradwell and Lound) but seems to have been responsible for Hopton as well. (John Thurtell asks what he wants done with the Hopton accounts, as he [John Thurtell] is moving to the Parish of Blundeston.)

In a letter of 26 August 1803 (184KB), written from Gorleston, Thomas Thurtell demands an apology for a perceived insult on the occasion of a public meeting in Lowestoft three days earlier.

In a letter of 14 October 1803 (159KB), he and others take the reverend gentleman to task for not allowing an independent valuation of the tithes to be paid in Bradwell parish.

In a letter of 01 November 1804 (56KB), Thomas threatens to bring an action of trespass against the rector if he continues to send partly-laden carriages to pick up his tithes.




More trouble:

The Ipswich Journal of Saturday, November 7, 1801, Issue 3584 reports:
Ipswich, Nov 7.
"On Sunday morning last a barn belonging to Mr Thomas Thurtell of Bradwell, in this County, was burnt down, with all the corn therein; and as it stood a considerable distance from any dwelling house, there is great reason to believe it was willfully set on fire. 150L reward is offered for the discovery of the incendiary."