Newport (Isle of Wight) Primitive Methodist chapel

72 Pyle Street, Newport PO30 1UJ

The Apollo Theatre on Pyle Street - the former Wesleyan Methodist chapel - see the comment below.
Return from Newport Primitive Methodist chapel in the 1851 Census of Places of Public Religious Worship
Provided by David Tonks
Newport (Isle of Wight) Primitive Methodist chapel

There are two pieces of evidence about the early days of Primitive Methodism in Newport on the Isle of Wight.

  1.  The 1851 census of Places of Public Religious Worship does include a Primitive Methodist chapel in Newport – Ebenezer chapel. It was probably in Holyrood Street, since the minister who filled in the census form lived in Ebenezer Cottage in Holyrood Street.
  2. The 1859 Primitive Methodist magazine contains an account by J Holdroyd of the opening of what he says is the first Newport (Isle of Wight) Primitive Methodist chapel. It was second-hand, acquired from the Wesleyan Reformers, and the opening services were held from October 3rd 1858. Speakers were Rev G Lamb of London, Rev GJ Proctor (Independent) and Rev J Elrick (Independent). After a tea for 200, a public meeting was addressed by Messrs Dash, Lamb, Pritchard, Willis, Holdroyd and J Alderslade.

The Magazine account tells us that the chapel measured 44′ x 32′ with a gallery at one end, a schoolroom entered from the gallery, a vestry and room for expansion. It was “fitted up with pews”, lit by gas and had an organ. It cost £600 of which they had only raised £100.

Neither of these accounts located either the first or the replacement chapel. When this page was initially created I asked where was this chapel and what happened to it? See the comments below which fill in some of the detail.


Primitive Methodist magazine 1859 p.42


Comments about this page

  • Regards the Apollo Theatre site.
    Historic England state it as Apollo Theatre (Formerly listed as Victoria Methodist Chapel).
    You have a photo o this property above.
    The second property mentioned is the Salvation Army Citadel at 72 Pyle Street. In the wall is a cement plaque mentioning a Evans in 1881.

    By J Ravenscroft (10/11/2022)
  • Thanks Alex for the clarification. I have added both Pyle Street chapels to the map, together with the location of the first chapel in Holyrood Street, and amended the label on the Theatre picture.

    The Salvation Army building looks a bit new for an 1859 build date. Is it a later building?

    By Christopher Hill (13/10/2021)
  • Alex Welford comments:
    The image is of the building now used as Apollo Theatre between 123 and 124 Pyle Street, (and your map points to this building too), which according the IoW Family History Society’s database, was the (Victoria?) Wesleyan chapel. (Although it is not listed on the My Wesleyan site as such.)

    The IOWFHS site lists two PM chapels in Newport; one was the Ebenezer chapel on Holyrood St, that they say became a Catholic Apostolic Church, then bought by Wheeler/Hursts in 1886 (I found an ad in the Hampshire Independent, advertising this chapel for sale on 10.04.1852).

    The other – a 2nd PM chapel, on Pyle Street – according to IOWFHS – became the Salvation Army Hall, which is at 72 Pyle Street (not the Theatre). Your page says from the 1859 PM Magazine, the PM chapel on Pyle Street was bought from the ‘Wesleyan Reformers’ (also reported in Isle of Wight Observer, and as opening in 1858), but calls it the first PM chapel.

    On the 1908 OS 25-inch map there are chapels (‘Ch’)at both Pyle St locations. Can this page be clarified on your site? The Salvation Army Hall is still there, so perhaps your picture should be of that building, and named as the 2nd PM chapel? I have not found primary sources to confirm this.

    By Christopher Hill (13/10/2021)
  • Thanks Mike for this. I’ve added the location map above.  On the 1863-4 Ordnance Survey 1:2,500 map the building is labelled as “Wesleyan chapel” but I guess it took a while to update survey information.  Later maps show the building with no label or just marked “chapel”

    By Christopher Hill (14/08/2017)
  • Hello researching my family history and discovered my grandmother Ellen Willis nee Leigh was baptised at the Primitive Methodist chapel in Newport Isle of Wight. I see from reading Christopher Hill’s notes on the chapel that he was asking where it was.

    Following a hunch I think I found the answer:

    Somewhere read that the Apollo Theatre was built after the purchase of the Apollo Theatre of a Primitive Methodist Chapel. This made sense as the original building was bought from Weslyian Methodists who moved to larger premises. I assume that the County Press would have pictures of the original Primitive Methodists chapel which interests me for my family history.

    Any help appreciated


    By Mike Plumbley (13/08/2017)

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