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How sad that we’ve sold off Britain’s rectories

A rectory in Northamptonshire. Getty

I don’t know about you, says AN Wilson in The Times, but “my heart sinks” whenever I walk past a gate labelled “Old Rectory” or “Old Parsonage”. They have taken on an “air of polish” that would have been distinctly lacking when the old parson lived there. Today, with their swanky tennis courts and swimming pools, “there is something smug about them”. But while the rich live in the old vicarage, the inhabitants of the new vicarage – the clergy in their “poky, ugly little modern houses” – are not so fortunate. It is no surprise to learn that Britain’s vicars have joined our doctors, nurses and just about everyone else and “put in for a pay rise”.