Who was Edward Richardson?

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We are frequently asked who Edward Richardson is - or more accurately was.  Many think that he is Mr E. Richardson (Eric) , our school caretaker.  This is not the case although I am sure that Edward would be very impressed by the coincidence!  He was the original benefactor of the school as can be seen in the will extract below.

An extract from Edward Richardson's will dated and signed 10 May 1714 (courtesy of Dr Richard Harper-Smith, 'Paupers, Priests and People of Tetford', published by R. Harper Smith, 2001):

(To) my daughter-in-law, Frances Overton, the wife of Edward Overton, and to her heirs, for ever, all that my Water Mill with the Kiln, House, Mill and appurtenances belonging, situate, lying and being in Tetford in the said County of Lincoln.  Also, all that close of pasture adjoining all which now are in the tenure and occupation of John Hilton or assigns.

To my wife Helen, for the term of her natural life, all that cottage or tenement with the lands and contents in Tetford and now in the tenure of Thomas Pool.  After her decease I give the same to the Minister and Churchwardens of Tetford and their successors for ever, towards teaching the Poors Children, of Tetford and Salmonby whose parents do not farm a tenement of above 4 per annum, to read English and to knit and spin.  Only my will and desire is that the children of whose parents shall inhabit in the House and lands belonging to the Water Mill shall be taught gratis.

And I do hereby order, the Minister and Churchwardens and their successors for ever shall from time to time chose a convenient and fit and proper School Dame to be placed in the said House to teach the children to read English and to knit and spin and be instructed in the Church Catechism and the Christian religion.  If they do not consider does job properly they shall replace with a new teacher.