Rushton Church

A gravestone in St Laurence’s church at the small village of Rushton Spencer faces West instead of East unlike the other gravestones to be found there. On the gravestone can be found an inscription which has a mixture of Latin, English and Greek which reads as follows:

Memento Mori (be mindful of death)

Thomas, son of Thomas and Mary Meaykin

Interred 16 July 1781, aged 21 years

As a man falleth before wicked men, so fell I.

Bia Thanates (death of violence)

This poor person went from Rushton to stone in Staffordshire and became a houseboy to an Apothecary. The story tells that this boy became affectionate with his bosses daughter or possibly his wife. Quite suddenly Thomas became ill and just as suddenly died, he was then buried in St Michael’s church churchyard in Stone on 16th July 1781. It is said that Thomas’s favourite donkey made its way to the graveyard and began to scrape away the soil on top of his grave with its hoof. Even though Thomas’s death was suspicious it would be a full 12 months before an exhumation was ordered.

Thomas’s grave at Rushton church

When the body was finally exhumed it was found to be lying face down in the coffin, yet when the body had been placed in the coffin it was in a face up position. Had the Apothecary administered some type of drug to Thomas which had slowed his life signs to such a point that it would appear that he had died, only to re-awaken to find that he had been buried alive. No one stood trial for his murder and his remains were taken to Rushton church and reburied, his grave was positioned the wrong way round in the hope that this would stop his ghost from wandering.

It is thought that the place where Rushton church stands would have been a place of pre-Christian worship. Also another legend which is connected with this church is the belief that three giants are said to be buried beneath its floor and are also said to be clad in full armour!


4 Responses to “Rushton Church”

  1. I like the valuable information you provide in your articles. I’ll bookmark your weblog and check again here frequently. I’m quite sure I will learn many new stuff right here! Best of luck for the next!

  2. I’ve been browsing online greater than three hours these days, but I never discovered any fascinating article like yours. It is lovely worth sufficient for me. In my view, if all site owners and bloggers made excellent content as you did, the web might be a lot more useful than ever before.

  3. Please see the ‘Rushton Grave Robbers?’ page for details of the discovery of the De Trafford family burial vault by my father in 1956.

  4. I discovered this page while doing genealogy research. My last name is Rustin in Oklahoma but it appears my ansestors were Rushtons from Staffordshire. I just tripped over this and was fascinated. Thank you! Not sure if there is any family connection yet but I have been having a great time researching!

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