The Response of the Church of England to Economic and Demographic Change: the Diocese of Chester, 1818-1851

Brian Gobbett


The first decades of the nineteenth century saw dramatic population growth and urbanization in England. Nowhere was this more so than in the diocese of Chester. In response to this changing demographic pattern, the Church of England made substantial administrative changes and was energetic in securing financial aid. Nevertheless, massive population growth, the traditional poverty and uneven revenue of Chester clergy, and an ineffective parochial system prevented the Church of England from adequately providing for the spiritual care of its parishioners.

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