SHELLEY: Shelley Congregational Church History up to 1868.



After the death of the Rev. Mr. Kaye, vicar of Kirkburton, in the year 1793, a number of his hearers, dissatisfied with the theology and preaching of his successor, met for worship at a house in Lane Head, Kirkburton. Rev. Mr. Moorhouse, Huddersfield, Galland, Holmfirth, and other neighbouring ministers preached for them. Mr. Wm. Thorpe, afterwards of Bristol, succeeded for nearly twelve months, and then removed to Peniston, when it was resolved to hold the services henceforth at a house in Shelley, which is yet standing. A chapel was now resolved on. It was opened Jan. I, 1797, by Rev. R. Rayson, of Wakefield.

The ministers have been-

  • 1798. Rev. R. HARPER. He removed to Northowram in 1801.
  • A call was then given to Mr. Jonathan Gill, a Rotherham student, but was not accepted.
  • 1802. Rev. ROBERT_ BLAKE, from Bridlington. During his ministry the chapel was crowded with an attentive and admiring congregation. He was eminently successful. He removed to Ossett 18°8.
  • 1808. Rev. BENJAMIN SUGDEN, from Horton-in-Craven. His pastorate was very short. He removed 1810.
  • 1812. Rev. J. HANSON, from Stainland. During the ministry of this eccentric person great dissensions took place, and a number of persons of wealth and influence withdrew and erected a new chapel at Dogley Lane. Mr. Hanson resigned 1822.
  • 1823. Rev. JAMES STEWART, from Clayton West. Very high in doctrine. The congregation was now greatly reduced. Mr. S. removed to Partington 1826.
  • 1826. Rev. C. WHITWORTH, from Stockport. An almost deserted chapel and very insufficient support compelled his removal in 1834.
  • A period intervened during which there was no regular pastor. In 1846 a Christian gentleman at Huddersfield generously undertook to contribute towards the support of a minister. By the aid of the West Riding Home Missionary Society the services of a pastor were secured.
  • 1847. Rev. GEORGE B. SCOTT, from Manchester Town Mission. He removed to Brotherton 1849.
  • Since his departure the pulpit has been principally filled by lay agents. A convenient school-room was opened Aug, 1850.

Transcribed by Colin Hinson © 2014
from the Appendix to
Congregationalism in Yorkshire
by James C. Miall, 1868.