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Help and advice for EARBY IN CRAVEN: Earby In Craven Baptist Church History up to 1912.

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EARBY IN CRAVEN: Earby In Craven Baptist Church History up to 1912.


The Earby-in-Craven Church was founded on May 31st, 1819. It numbered twenty-six members, the majority having been members previously at Barnoldswick, or Cowling Hill. Barnoldswick was strongly opposed to the separation, for in its letters of dismission we read—" It gives us great pain that in opposition to all our advice, and in plain violation of our solemn covenant, you have forcibly left us as a Church. Yet we exercise forbearance, and leave you to the disposal of Him who does all things well." Mr. William Wilkinson, one of their number, was chosen pastor at a salary of £10 per annum; this very moderate provision he supplemented by handloom weaving and keeping a day school. The necessity of chapel building being urgent, their pastor went on a begging pilgrimage to London, soliciting help from the Churches in the towns through which he passed. He reached Bloomsbury chapel on a Sunday morning; Dr. Brock prevailed on him to preach, after which the congregation contributed a handsome collection. He returned to Yorkshire with a hundred pounds, and the new chapel was opened on Good Friday, 1821. The pastor continued with his little flock for twenty-seven years, until his death in 1846.

After him, Mr. Richard Heaton, a local preacher of Settle, was ordained to the office in 1849, but his ministry was closed by death in 1853. The following year, Mr. J. M. Ryland of Horton College was elected pastor, and in 1858 the site for a larger chapel was presented by Mr. Thomas Riley. The building was opened for worship on March 29th, 1861. During Mr. Ryland's ministry the Church. was blessed by receiving into its fellowship some who afterwards became its best workers and supporters. The pastor's health giving way, his resignation was followed by several brief and uneventful pastorates, after which the Church remained without a minister for twelve years. During this period several enterprises had been accomplished, and, in 1893, Rev. W. Wynn accepted the Church's invitation. He remained until 1904, during which time a manse was built at a cost of i000, and considerable improvements made in the chapel premises. Many were added to the membership but dissensions afterwards arose which led to serious secessions. Mr. Wynn was succeeded by Rev. R. Tallontire (1905-9); the present pastor, Rev. C. W. Townsend, succeeded him in 1910.

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