Illuminated testimonial for the Reverend Capel Sewell, H.M. Inspector of Schools, 1885

Scope and Content

The collection contains an illuminated testimonial presented to the Rev. Capel John Sewell by teachers of public elementary schools in the borough of Nottingham and in the Poor Law Unions of Basford and Bingham, on the occasion of his retirement as Her Majesty's Inspector of Schools for the district, on 10 October 1885.

The testimonial takes the form of a large bound volume with embossed design on front cover surrounding a metal title plate. It includes a black and white photograph of Sewell; an illuminated title page; a black and white inkwash or watercolour illustration of a house, with a man and woman playing tennis, a woman with a parasol, and a girl, entitled 'Mansfield Woodhouse'; an illuminated introduction; a black and white inkwash or watercolour illustration of a house, with a woman with a parasol and two children, entitled 'Winthorpe'; and the signatures of 234 teachers in the Nottingham area, and the names of the schools that they represented.

The illuminations were made by Marcus Ward and Co. Ltd, Illuminators, in coloured ink and gold leaf.

Administrative / Biographical History

Reverend Capel John Sewell was born in Norfolk in about 1834 and was educated at Brasenose College Oxford (BA. 1856, MA. 1859). He was ordained, and served as curate of Astbury, Cheshire, and St Michael, Paddington. In the 1860s he became an inspector of schools. He retired in 1885, by which time he was living at 'The Hollies' in Winthorpe, Nottinghamshire. He died in 1896.

The City of Nottingham Teachers' Association was established at the end of the 19th century to represent the pay and working conditions of teachers in the town and to support the improvement of education provision. It later became the City of Nottingham branch of the National Union of Teachers.


No archival arrangement has been necessary.

Conditions Governing Access

Accessible to all readers.

Other Finding Aids

This description is the only finding aid available for the collection. Copyright on the description belongs to the University of Nottingham.

Physical Characteristics and/or Technical Requirements


Conditions Governing Use

Identification of copyright holders of unpublished material is often difficult. Permission to make any published use of any material from the collection must be sought in advance in writing from the Keeper of Manuscripts and Special Collections (email

Reprographic copies can be supplied for educational use and private study purposes only, depending on access status and the condition of the documents.

Custodial History

The collection was given by the City of Nottingham Teachers' Association (N.U.T.) to the Library of the University of Nottingham Institute of Education in June 1957. It was transferred to the University of Nottingham's Department of Manuscripts and Special Collections in 1995.