The monument to Isaac Littlebury


On the north wall is a tablet with the following inscription:

Isaac Littlebury.

"In memory of Isaac Littlebury, whose liberal education, travels abroad, skill in divers languages, knowledge of history and conversation with eminent men, rendered him a lover of public liberty and good order, which he endeavoured to promote by publishing several eminent books. He was, through the course of his life, just, open, modest, generous, mild, beneficent, frugal. He died the 30th of April 1710, in his 53d year."

Isaac Littlebury is said to have been the son of "Mr. Thomas Littlebury, the famous bookseller in Little Britain, eminent for his skill in languages (fn. 9)." He is best known as the translator of Herodotus; what his other publications were I have not been able to learn, nor any thing further of his history.

From:  Daniel Lysons, 'Sutton', in The Environs of London: Volume 1, County of Surrey (London, 1792), pp. 492-496. British History Online http://www.british-history.ac.uk/london-environs/vol1/pp492-496 [accessed 10 September 2018].



Illustrated Talks as part of the Extraordinary Women Event

The exhibition will be supported by a series of short 30 minute illustrated talks on the theme of Extraordinary Women.  

  • Thursday 6 September 2018: 1 pm - Cllr Ruth Dombey - 100 years on
  • Friday 7 September 2018: 1 pm - Clare Parish - Girl Guiding Rocks
  • Saturday 8 September 2018: 1 pm - Alice Brown & Rachel Clark (Sutton Community Farm) - Extraordinary Women in Food and Farming
  • Thursday 13 September 2018: 1 pm - Janice Clarke - Mary Sumner
  • Thursday 13 September 2018: 2 pm - Cllr Jean Crossby - The Path to Survival
  • Friday 14 September 2018: 1 pm - Veronica Williams - Claudia Jones
  • Saturday 15 September 2018: 1 pm - Abby Matthews - Women in the Frame
  • Saturday 22nd September 2018: 1 pm - Olwen Edwards & Jackie McLoughlin - Helen Bamber 
Check out all the events taking place:  http://churchyardfriends.eventbrite.com

Extraordinary Women: Opens Thursday 6th September



The free exhibition "Extraordinary Women" will open at 10 am this Thursday 9th September 2018.  The venue is St Nicholas Church, Sutton's historic town centre church.  The exhibition marks the centenary of when women first gained the right to vote and has been organised by The Friends and St Nicholas Churchyard (in conjunction with St Nicholas Church).  The exhibition has been enabled by event funding from the Heritage Action Zone.

The exhibition and series of events will celebrate the lives of some of the Extraordinary Women who are connected with St Nicholas.

Check out all the events taking place:  http://churchyardfriends.eventbrite.com  

Monika Mary Nightingale: An Extraordinary Woman

"Much beloved she gave herself for others during the Great War".

Monika Mary Nightingale was 14 at the time of the 1911 census.  She lived with her mother, father and her little 6-year-old brother Bernard in a house on Sutton Common Road.  Her father, Frederick, was a Bank Clerk working for the National Bank and her mother, Mary, was a housewife.   They had named their house Luscinia which is a play on their surname as Luscinia is the genus of birds to which the nightingale belongs.  The family had lived previously at Rose Cottage on the Green at Benhilton when they had first moved to Sutton in 1893.

Monika had been called 'Nonnie' when she was little and that's the name she gave the census taker when they came to the house when she was 4.

Monika had another brother called Cyril Frederick Brock Nightingale who was 3 years older than her.  By the time of the 1911 census he had left home and was living elsewhere.

During the Great War (1914-1918), large numbers of women were recruited into jobs vacated by men who had gone to fight in the war. New jobs were also created as part of the war effort, for example in munitions factories.   


Though there was initial resistance to hiring women for what was seen as 'men's work', the introduction of conscription in 1916 made the need for women workers urgent. Around this time, the government began coordinating the employment of women through campaigns and recruitment drives.


More than a million women took the chance to join the workforce. They worked across the economy - from tram drivers and train cleaners, to postal workers and police patrols.


In 1914 the seventeen-year-old Monika Nightingale would have had every expectation and opportunity to be of service to her country.

1918 saw the advent of votes for women and even as men returned home from the war and displaced women from the roles that they had occupied a fundamental shift had taken place in society.  But this was not a change that Monika would be able to enjoy.

Spanish Flu

I had a little bird 
Its name was Enza 
I opened the window, 
And in-flu-enza.

The influenza pandemic of 1918-19 claimed the lives of between 20 and 40 million people around the world, at least three times the number killed in the war.

The flu reached London in the June of 1918.  Unlike ordinary seasonal flu, which was worst in the elderly, weak and sick, the new illness disproportionately struck those aged 20 to 30. Young adults with the strongest immune systems were, unexpectedly, the most vulnerable.

Monika died on Christmas day in 1919.    The quotation on the plaque that commemorates her is an adaptation from Revelation 14:13  

"And I heard a voice from heaven saying unto me, Write, Blessed are the dead which die in the Lord from henceforth: Yea, saith the Spirit, that they may rest from their labours; and their works do follow them."

The Right Reverend and Right Honourable Dame Sarah Mullally DBE: An Extraordinary woman


Sarah was born Sarah Elisabeth Bowser on 26 March 1962. She is the younger of her parents' two daughters.  Motivated by her Christian faith she decided to follow a career in nursing after taking her A-levels. 
She began her nursing career in 1980 undertaking a nursing degree at South Bank Polytechnic, with clinical placements at St Thomas' Hospital.

In 1987, she married Eamonn Mullally. Together, they have two children; a daughter and son.

She then held clinical nursing posts at St Thomas' Hospital and The Royal Marsden Hospital and then moved into nursing leadership roles, firstly at the former Westminster Hospital (where she was a ward sister and head of practice development) and then as director of nursing at the Chelsea and Westminster later becoming deputy and acting chief executive officer. In 1999 she was appointed as Chief Nursing Officer and director of patient experience for England. She was 37 and was the youngest person to hold these positions. 

Sarah started training for ordained ministry in 1998.  She was ordained in the Church of England as a deacon in 2001 and as a priest in 2002. From 2001 to 2004, she served her curacy as a part-time minister at the Parish of Battersea Fields in the Diocese of Southwark.

In 2004, Sarah left her position as Chief Nursing Officer to pursue full-time ministry. She then served as an assistant curate at St Saviour's Church, Battersea Fields from 2004 to 2006. 

In the 2005 New Year Honours, Sarah was appointed a Dame Commander of the Order of the British Empire (DBE) in recognition for her contribution to nursing and midwifery.

In 2006, she became the team rector of Sutton team ministry at St Nicholas' Church in Sutton, London.


From 2012 to 2015, she was the canon treasurer at Salisbury Cathedral in the Diocese of Salisbury.

In July 2015, she was consecrated a bishop by Justin Welby the Archbishop of Canterbury, during a ceremony at Canterbury Cathedral.  She was installed as Bishop of Crediton, a suffragan bishop in the Diocese of Exeter.  

In September 2015, she became the first woman in the Church of England to lead an ordination service, ordaining two deacons, as priests.

The Rt Revd and Rt Hon Dame Sarah Mullally DBE was installed as the 133rd Bishop of London at St Paul's Cathedral on 12th May 2018. She now sits in the House of Lords as one of the Lords Spirituals. She was sworn in as a member of the Privy Council on 14th March 2018.