Dover Peter Street Primitive Methodist Chapel

The Christian Messenger in 1901 tells us about the start of Peter Street. “As early as 1851 the erection of a new chapel was contemplated, and the Rev. T. Doody, who had recently come to Dover, initiated a scheme for raising the necessary funds. Mr. George Lewis, one of the most devoted workers of that day, gave to Mr. Doody the first ten shillings towards the new building. It is a joy that Mr. Lewis is still in our midst, though his evening is advancing; and it is equally an inspiration that he is in hearty sympathy with our larger scheme, and has again paid in the first donation. It is a matter for earth and heaven to be thankful for when the soul does not get wrinkled and prejudiced in advancing years, but, while holding to the good of the past, shares also in the holy ambitions and wider possibilities of the future. Mr. Lewis, in referring to those first strange, glad days, says: “It was not long before I became as mad as they were (in the Limekiln Street room), for the Lord met me and converted me. I became a member with them, receiving my first trial ticket in June, 1850.” Mr. Lewis recently (May 6, 1901,) laid one of the memorial stones of our new church in London Road, and contributed the handsome sum of £25. May his evening here be full of peace, as his eternal morning will be unclouded and blessed. Mr. and Mrs. Stokes, still with us, were also in these early days valuable workers, the membership of Mrs. S. dating from 1852.

About £450 was expended on the Peter Street structure, the half of this being raised – a considerable sum for that time with only twenty-two members. The chapel was opened in 1860. Its basement, now used for Sunday School, Y.P.S.C.E., and various social gatherings, was left in a totally rough state. With sawdust for a floor, and unplastered walls, they taught their school therein for some considerable period. More recently various improvements have been made until the total expenditure has reached over £1,100. Last year, the young men of the church and school built (giving their labour) a new wing, containing two classrooms for senior scholars. The cost of material and furnishing, which was upwards, of £60, was raised at once. These rooms are serving a useful purpose, but have not afforded much relief from our congested condition.”

After the building of the new church in London Road, Peter Street chapel had a variety of use before being demolished after the Second World War.

Reference

Primitive Methodist Magazine 1901/900

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