By the seventeenth century legislation in England required local guardians to collect a tax and to use the proceeds to provide cash or bread for those unable to provide for themselves. But there was already a long tradition of churches providing for the poor, so many parish churches continued to operate ‘poor boxes’ into which donations could be placed to be used by the clergy and churchwardens to supplement the often meagre statutory provision.
St Mary Abchurch still has its original poor boxes.
We need your consent to load the translations
We use a third-party service to translate the website content that may collect data about your activity. Please review the details and accept the service to view the translations.