MELTHAM: Meltham Baptist Church History up to 1912.



The Meltham Church was constituted in 1813, when five persons were baptised in a neighbouring stream, and were united, with three members from Lockwood, in Church fellowship. This was the result of work undertaken two years before by Salendine Nook, where a house had been licensed for worship. For three years their home was a cottage, until a gift of land inspired them to build and open a chapel in 1817. In 1820, Mr. Abraham Webster took the pastorate of the Church, then numbering twelve members, and continued for four and a half years.

After two brief ministries, Mr. Thomas Thomas settled here in 1829, remaining to the fortieth year of his ministry and the eightieth of his age. His coming marked a new era in the Church's life. A school-room was built in 1832, and enlarged in 1846. On August 10th, 1864, the new chapel, costing 2000, was opened, unencumbered by debt. Amongst its early supporters the Church lovingly cherishes the names of John Broadbent and Benjamin Wood. In 1873, Mr. James Alderson, of Brighton Grove College, began a happy pastorate of thirteen years, during the course of which the Manse was built at an outlay of nearly £1000.

In 1889, Mr. Henry Davies, of Brighton Grove College, became pastor, but removed to Halifax in 1892. Successive pastors were Revs. F. Oliver (1893-6); J. Jackson (1897-9); W. K. Still (1902-9). In 1895, a school improvement fund was inaugurated, and, steadily accumulating, led to the erection of excellent school premises, which were opened on May 13th, 1911. Of the cost, amounting to £2100, only about £500 remains to be raised. The Church records its great indebtedness to the succession of faithful men who have served on its diaconate, and in the offices of the Church and School.

Transcribed by Colin Hinson © 2014
from the "Present Churches" section of
The Baptists of Yorkshire
by Rev. J. Brown Morgan
and Rev. C.E. Shipley