Broad Moor Common Chapel Woolhope Herefordshire

South East of Hereford

Stephen Horsfield
Chapel in 1992
David Hill
Chapel in 1992
David Hill
Detail photographed in 2015
David Hill
Interior (2015)
David Hill
Exterior (2015)
David Hill

This one room chapel is in the wood just off Broad Moor Common at OS 603360 about 3 miles from the site of the chapel at Hampton Bishop. It must have been in use quite recently because there appears to be an electric organ in the chapel. It is on sale right now through the offices of Watkins & Thomas, Hereford Estate Agents so there is a strong chance that the chapel will not be standing much longer. There is an excellent set of photos on the Watkins & Thomas web site. Local folklore holds that the farmer who built it also built the cottage next door. The structure is what I describe as brick on edge an extraordinarily flimsy structure though the chapel looks rather more robust than the cottage which appears to be supported by fresh air.

On the East side above the stream which drains the common there is a stone foundation, which might be evidence of an earlier building on the site. If my local experience is anything to go by the other walls may have no foundations at all.

Comments about this page

  • Rat trap bond is used, and particularly used in PM chapels, across Woolhope dome. Given the concentration of rat trap bond in Fownhope at the Mill and on the main through road, my thesis is that a Fownhope based builder was responsible.

    By Steve Horsfield (24/08/2019)
  • Thomas Hobson writes about the opening of Broadmore (sic) Primitive Methodist chapel in the 1858 Primitive Methodist magazine.  Broadmore, in the parish of Woolhope, was missioned around thirty years previously but a chapel was not built until 1858.

    The new chapel was 23′ x 16′, brick-built with a blue slate roof and a boarded floor. The sot was £60 of which £20 had been raised by the time of opening. The chapel opened with services and a tea meeting from Sunday March 7th 1858 with sermons by J Shephard, J Richards, T Mudge, Ford and Thomas Hobson who submitted the account to the magazine.  

    Reference: Primitive Methodist magazine June 1858 p.362

    By Christopher Hill (25/04/2017)
  • The date in the cement looks like 1857.

    By Stephen Horsfield (29/04/2013)
  • This form of brick bond, rarely found, was in use in the early to mid nineteenth century. It was generally employed to save money since, when they were laid on their sides, approximately 25% fewer bricks were needed to construct a building. Although essentially based on a solid wall construction, the alternating headers created a cavity between each pair of stretchers, which improved the thermal efficiency of the wall as well as giving the bond its familiar name of “rat trap”. Rat trap bond is said to have the same strength as a solid 9 inch wall constructed in either Flemish or English bond.

    By David Noble (05/03/2013)
  • The particulars of sale make reference to the Baptist Union Corporation, but the cement placque above the door clearly says Primitive Methodist. I can’t decipher the date without climbing up.

    By Stephen Horsfield (04/03/2013)

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