~ Gallery - Churches and Chapels ~
St. Pauls
Photo 2007
St Paul's Protestant Mission was founded in 1891 by a breakaway group, who had become dissatisfied with certain forms of Ritualism at the Parish Church of St James.
The founding members or the church were: William Witton, John Pyatt, William Flavell, George Abbiss, Sarah Worton, Joseph Aston, Benjamin Passmore, William Henry Hartill, Enoch Aston, snr., Thomas Abbiss, William Massey, Albert Aston, John Witton and Isiah Burrows.
The small company who had left the church, first began meeting in the open, whilst they were looking for a suitable building for worship.
An old derelict malthouse in Lake Street was investigated, this later became the site of the present St. Pauls Church.
Much of the history of St. Pauls was taken from this booklet which was a Jubilee Souvenier produced in 1941, it was written by Enoch Aston, one of the founder members and printed by Burrows in Lake Street.
CDM Collection.
Thomas Gould, solicitor, of Petworth House in Church Street, agreed to rent the group the malthouse for three shillings a week.
Mr. Gould retained the ground floor of this three storey building for his own purposes, but for the upper two storeys they had a free hand to make any changes they wanted.
The top floor was removed except for a small gallery at the front, work was done by the group and their friends, amongst which was a carpenter, plumber, brick-layer and blacksmith, the remaining folk carried out work as labourers.
They used up their free time in the evenings and Saturday afternoons, carpenters made the seating, whilst the other workmen made the alterations to the building.
At first, oil lamps illuminated the building and only one heater warmed the place, it was not uncommon for the snow to blow through the tiled roof and fall on those worshiping below during the winter months.
The formal opening of the Church for worship was on September 29th, 1891.
After three years, more alterations and improvements were carried out, walls were plastered, gas lighting installed and better heating from a coal fired stove, all adding greatly to their comfort.
In 1901, the building was purchased from Mr. Gould, and more alterations were carried out, the old malthouse kiln was pulled down, and in its place they built an extension for a Sunday School, further improvements were made to the heating and furnishings.
During the alterations the Church was closed for a couple of weeks, and was re-opened in 1906, but the ambition was to one day build a new church on the site.
St. Paul's Protestant Church was registered for solemnizing marriages on 19 June, 1920,
A campaign to raise funds for the new church was started in 1919, and by 1923 their ambitions were realised when work commenced in June of that year.
Taking down the old building and rebuilding only took five months, the result being the church and school.
The whole cost of rebuilding which is now the present Church was approximately 2,200 and it was opened on 15th November, 1923.
The new St. Pauls was registered for solemnizing marriages on 13 May, 1924.
The Church is still in regular use today.
~