St Austell Downs Primitive Methodist chapel
camp meetings on the wrestling downs
St Austell Downs is “a large and populous neighbourhood about three quarters of a mile east of St Austell”. They were known as the “Wrestling Downs” where the annual wrestling matches took place at the parish wakes – and evangelistic camp meetings held by the Primitive Methodists. St Austell Downs Primitive Methodist society and chapel dates back to the 1820s, but in 1859 they opened a new, larger chapel.
The foundation stone was laid in August 1858 by S Kernick and the opening services took place from MArch 27th 1859. Speakers at the ceremonies included Rev Collier (Wesleyan), CG Honor, Isaac White, Mr Prescot, Rev W Gilbert, Mr Bate and Mr Hodge. There were tea meetings at both the stone laying and the actual opening. Indeed, the day of the opening started with a very well attended 6:00am. prayer meeting.
The occasions are described by Isaac White in the Primitive Methodist magazine.
Where was the chapel and what happened to it?
Primitive Methodist magazine June 1859 page 369