Langley Hall - William Haslam (1863)

This was the home of Sir Thomas Beauchamp.

William Haslam’s wife was tired and unhappy being in Bath, so they decided to ask the Lord to move them. Two days later he received a letter from Sir Thomas Beauchamp offering him a Rectory in Norfolk, which must have been written as they were praying. The living of Buckenham was worth £300pa with a good house and a population of twenty people. There was the Rectory of Hassingham connected to it, containing eighteen or twenty cottages. Haslam was depressed about this because he wanted another sphere of work and not a tiny living even if it did have a big salary. However, they had that morning read in the Word, “Arise, and go unto Gaza which is desert,” so he knew he had to take the offer.

He had three months to prepare his district for the new pastor. When he left; the open-air services, Temperance meetings, Bible readings, Mothers’ meetings and schools were all in good order and well looked after by those who were responsible for them.

Haslam wondered if God had shelved them in a pleasant country place for asking to be moved from Bath. However, there were larger congregations than expected at both churches on the first Sunday. An old gamekeeper who had been praying for God to send them a man that could do them some good came to the service to see the result of his prayers; he was pleased with the Almighty’s choice. Haslam had gone round the cottages earlier and discovered that not a single person knew about conversion and he found it difficult ‘to preach to people so entirely dark and ignorant.” After the service he noticed five or six in the churchyard who looked as if something had touched them, so he invited them to come to the Rectory at 6.00pm. As they did not say they would come to the Rectory, Haslam accepted the invitation to give a talk three miles away, leaving his wife to look after anyone who might come to the evening gathering. To his surprise, sixty showed up in the Rectory and his wife gave a talk where six found peace. The first Sunday on the job and revival had already begun.

Additional Information

cemetary is now a school.