For some time the matter of lighting the Parish Church with gas on the Sunday evenings, was discussed not only in the columns of the newspapers, but elsewhere, and the result was, the scheme was properly sanctioned, and subscriptions set on foot for carrying out the project; and about five weeks ago, MR. ROBINSON received an order to lay down mains, and place proper fittings to light up (St. Mary's) -- the Parish Church.
With only a month to perform the work in, the Gas and Water Company set about executing the order, and, although they laboured under many disadvantages, owing to the short notice, and were only able to procure certain articles on the Saturday, the work was duly accomplished, and on Sunday evening, the 28th of November, 1869, the chronicles of Kendal will say, the Parish Church was first lighted with gas.
The pendents, 23 in number, having each 20 burners -- making the total of 580 burners. There was not that brilliancy of light on Sunday evening as was expected by many, and at the same time puzzled MR. ROBINSON, as he had made the mains considerably larger than specified, but many of the good people contented themselves by saying that a subdued light was better for a place of worship than a bright one.
This of course did not satisfy the manager of the gas works, who was apprehensive of something wrong, and could only account for the same by the supposition that someone had either placed something in the pipes, or else by accident some obstruction had got into the piping.
They accordingly set about the work of discovery, and not until Thursday were their labours rewarded, by finding a large piece of hemp in one of the mains, after it had passed the meter, which, on being extracted, there is a plentiful supply of gas.
The congregation was very large on the occasion of the first Sunday evening of gas light in the Parish Church -- many coming away supposing the place was crowded out.
The VEN. ARCHDEACON COOPER, the vicar of Kendal, conducted the entire service, and delivered a very impressive discourse, taking for his text, ISIAH 2 verses 2 to 7.