Southport Marshside Road Primitive Methodist Chapel Lancashire
This chapel was built in 1876
In 1827 James Kellett, a Primitive Methodist preached on a green in Knob Hall Lane and in 1832 Marshside appears in the Primitive Methodist Circuit. A small chapel was built and in 2015 a florist’s shop stands on the site.
It was not until 1878 that the large brick built chapel was opened at a cost of £1864 accommodating 700 people. Unbelievably it was extended further in 1896.
It has always been known as the ‘Fisherman’s Chapel’ because the shrimpers agreed to double their working hours in order to provide extra money for the building fund.
Camp meetings were part of the life of this chapel and the society also held meetings in the Rechabite Hall in Shellfield Road’
In June 2015 the church is still open for worship and has a thriving Pre-School Playgroup meeting in the buildings at the back.
‘Dissenters of Every Description’ – The extraordinary story of Southport’s non-conformist churches -by Geoffrey Ellis
Photos taken June 2015
OS Map Ref:108:SD362190
Additional information (CH 09/2020 and 01/2021)
The 1851 Census of Places of Public Religious Worship contains a return completed by the Steward, John Hunt, from Marshside Churchtown Primitive Methodist chapel. It dates the building from 1833 and average morning and evening attendance as 160 worshippers. The Sunday school had 170 scholars.
The Primitive Methodist magazine of November 1853 contains an account by William Rowe of the re-opening of Churchtown Primitive Methodist chapel after it had been enlarged. The chapel, in the Preston circuit, dates from around 1833. However as the society, congregations and Sunday school grew, expansion was needed. The chapel was re-opened on September 11th 1853; Rev J Garner and William Rowe preached. At that time the society had 70 members and the Sunday school 250 scholars.
Thanks to Philip Thornborow for the information that this chapel appears in the 1867 list of places of worship published by the Registrar General as Church Town, Marshside Lane in the parish of North Meols. At various times the society has been known as Churchtown, Church Town or Marshfield Road chapel.
Twenty six years later, the 1879 Primitive Methodist magazine contains a note of the opening of a “very substantial and commodious” Primitive Methodist chapel at Churchtown in the Southport station.
It held 600 people and cost £2,000, of which they had raised £1,400.
The 1911 and earlier Ordnance Survey maps show a Primitive Methodist chapel in Churchtown on Marshside Road. Street View in 2018 shows a large Methodist church building on the site (1 Marshside Road, PR9 9TL) . The similar date of opening and the substantial size of the chapel suggest that Churchtown chapel and Marshside Road chapel are one and the same.
But things are happening here – Crossens Methodist Church, a small but active society, has made the courageous decision to close its building in September 2019 and join with Marshside Road to form a new society – Cornerstone Methodist Church.
Primitive Methodist magazine November 1853 p.687;
Primitive Methodist magazine 1879 page 571-572