Heading up to Chester for this year's Chartism Day (more of which later) I stopped off at the tiny Cheshire village of Baddiley.
Here, in the rather beautiful and peaceful surroundings of St Michael's church, is buried Helen Macfarlane - or, as it says on her gravestone, "Helen, wife of the Revd John W Edwards."
|Helen Macfarlane's grave.|
The life story of Helen Macfarlane is told here. So I won't repeat it.
However, if you are in Cheshire, I do recommend a visit. It is a long drive up a very narrow track and the church itself appears to nestle quietly between a couple of farms rather than at the heart of a bustling village.
But standing there in the churchyard of St Michael's is probably the closest you will ever get to a real Chartist. And as you stand next to her grave, you begin to wonder at what went through the head of this ferociously intellectual thinker on theology and politics as she watched her husband write his weekly sermons.
Had she abandoned her earlier ideas and ideologies and settled for the life of a Church of England vicar's wife? Did she contribute to those sermons? And if so, what did her husband's parishioners make of them?
|St Michael's Church, Baddiley.|