Charter Alley Primitive Methodist chapel, Hants

Beginnings and personal visit

1852 Charter AlleyPrimitive Methodist chapel as it was in 1989
Keith Guyler 1989.
Return from Chutter Alley, Lower Wotten Primitive Methodist chapel in the 1851 Census of Places of Public Religious Worship
Provided by David Tonks

Charter Alley (also called in old Primitive writings Chutter/Chatter/Chalter Alley) was in the Reading Circuit. The Primitive Methodists had preached the gospel, mainly in the open air, for nearly twenty years to the scattered population of this agricultural neighbourhood. For years they experienced both toil and discouragement, but later they could report that “the seed then sown in faith has since sprung up, and is now yielding a cheering harvest.”

A small cottage

In 1848 they purchased a small cottage and fitted it up for worship, but it was soon much too small to contain all the people who flocked to hear. So the trustees bought an old cottage and on part of the garden built a chapel which was opened on 21st December 1851. (The other cottage reverted to a dwelling.)

Isaac Nullis

In August 1855 the Primitive Methodist evangelist Isaac Nullis went to Silchester to take services at various places including Charter Alley, and God did a work of conversion through his preaching at each place. He returned to the area in September 1864 and held revival services including at Charter Alley, where there were several penitents on the Sunday, among whom was a woman of profligate habits and disreputable character.

My own experience

I attended a Methodist Revival Fellowship meeting at Charter Alley in the mid 1960s, attended by people from a number of local chapels. My contact with such people, in fellowship, prayer and conversation, strengthened my desire that for my life and service “your people shall be my people, and your God my God,” as one said in the Bible. As the old song has it:

Give me that old-time religion, Give me that old-time religion, Give me that old-time religion, It’s good enough for me.

Comments about this page

  • I’ve added to this page the return submitted by George Boman, local preacher, to the 1851 Census of Places of Public Religious Worship for what is called Chutter Alley in Lower Wotten. In March 1851, the chapel was a former dwelling house which accommodated 80. The afternoon service recorded 92 in the congregation and the evening service recorded 137. Very friendly!

    By Christopher Hill (31/07/2019)
  • The Primitive Methodist Magazine for March 1852 (pp.180-181) contains an account by E Bishop of the opening of what he calls “Chatter Alley” Primitive Methodist chapel. The opening followed 20 years of missioning and the purchase of a small cottage in 1848. In time they bought a further cottage and built a chapel in the corner of the garden.

    The chapel is 30′ x 20 and 12′, built of brick, covered by slate and with walls 9″ thick.

    The new chapel was opened on 21st December 1851 by C Moss, J Mules and E Bishop.  The weather was “very unfavourable”  so collections were not large.  This was unfortunate as the people were poor.


    Primitive Methodist Magazine for March 1852 (pp.180-181)

    By Christopher Hill (03/02/2017)
  • The chapel closed in about 1994.

    By David Young (30/07/2012)

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