~ Gallery - Churches and Chapels ~
The Wesleyan Chapel.
Wesleyan Methodist Church.
The Wesleyan chapel on the Himley Road is built in the Gothic style, and replaced an earlier Wesleyan chapel built in 1827 which occupied an adjacent plot, and is shown on the 1840 tithe map described as "chapel, school and pleck".
A newspaper report of 1960 notes:- "This church has a facinating history of being founded by a local character named Tom the Barber, who it is said, was converted by John Wesley himself and traditionally the first services were held at Tom's cottage in Furnace Row."
Another small methodist chapel owned by the Wesleyan Trustees is indicated on the same 1844 tithe map, only a couple of hundred yards away in Summit Place, near to where the Limerick Inn would be built later.
This building was apparently being used by another breakaway group that would later establish the Methodist New Connexion in Zoar Street.
Wesleyan, Himley Road, Gornal Wood
Photo 2015
The foundation stone of the present church was laid on the 5th August, 1895, and opened on the 5th December, 1895.
It was built by Mr J.E. Buxton of Lower Gornal, at a cost of 2,000 including the land and accomodates 450.
A Sunday School was also built adjacent to the church.
Registered for solemnizing marriages on the 15th of April 1897.
Evangelist Billy Graham reputedly visited the church in 1946 during his tour of the UK and Europe, as part of the American "Youth for Christ" Team.
The above gathering is taken in the Himley Road looking towards the Summit, with the Wesleyan on the right. A marching band can just be made out in the centre of the picture, no doubt a procession through Gornal ensued.
Right: Same view of Himley Road in 2020.
The above picture possibly dates to the 1950's