Bingley Primitive Methodist chapel

Where the residents are not as lovely and attractive as the scenery

The Primitive Methodist magazine for September 1854 contains an account by John Simpson of the opening of Bingley Primitive Methodist chapel in the Keighley circuit.

Mr Simpson waxes lyrical about Airedale with its “splendid river teeming with fish and glittering in the sunshine.”  He is not however impressed by the people: “agitations, controversies and strife, trading, political and religious, Sabbath desecration, drunkenness and infidelity fearfully prevail.”  So much for the idea that the contemplation of nature “will mellow and purify the heart of man”.

The first chapel was built in 1843 under the superintendency of S Charlton. In 1854 with Mr Hedley as Superintendent, they decided to build a replacement and Mr Parrot purchased a piece of land with many good things but a debt of £90.  The first stone was laid by C Rhodes of Bradford in August 1853 and the building was opened on July 9th and 16th 1854.  Sermons “of varied excellency” were preached by Messrs Macpherson, Sanderson, Orgar and Simpson.

The chapel is 39′ square “with a handsome orchestra and commodious vestry”.  Funding met a problem because of “the great and unlooked for blight which fell on the trade of the neighbourhood soon after the commencement of the building”.  Special thanks were due to J Harrison, printer and bookseller.

In 1897 the chapel underwent a thorough renovation and was re-opened at Eastertide.

The National Archives refer to Zion Primitive Methodist chapel on York Street, Bingley.  York Street has been redeveloped and there is no sign of the chapel now and it is not labelled on old Ordnance Survey maps. Can anyone clarify?


Primitive Methodist magazine September 1854  pp.558-559

Primitive Methodist magazine September 1897 page 395


Comments about this page

  • Thanks for the detail David. With the area’s redevelopment there is little remaining of the street pattern, let alone the buildings.

    By Christopher Hill (06/02/2019)
  • Bingley Primitive Methodist Chapel (Zion Methodists) was opened on Hill Street in 1854. It was generally known as Hill Street Chapel although it was actually set back from Hill Street on a small short street called St John Street.

    Official records may often refer to St John Street but local knowledge always refers to Hill Street.

    Before this, meetings were held in York Street (York Place) and I can’t determine if these were in rooms or a Chapel but it seems it may have been their first Chapel (1840/1850s). Before this they seemed to have first met in rooms in Nelson Street.

    By David Town (01/02/2019)
  • Hello Christopher, we have now located these records at the West Yorkshire Archives Services, Bradford branch. However, it is a bit confusing. There is a Cross Roads (Crossroads) in Haworth, also Bingley Road, Cross Roads (Cross Roads), Keighley. 

    Ref. 62D81/2: Crossroads (Cross Roads), Bingley Primitive Methodist Chapel Records. Sunday School Attendance Book 1898-1911. Holiday Club Accounts c.1919-1932, 1933-1955. Sunday School Class Registers 1898-1932, 1933-1958. Pew Rents 1884-1894. Deeds 1884-1932, 1933-1946. Music Papers 1907-1932, 1933-1967.

    Ref. C111/51-55: Bingley St. John’s (?), Primitive Methodist (Zion) Chapel, 5 volumes of documents, 1907-1932, 1933-1965.

    Ref. 39D92/1: Bingley Blackburn PM Chapel, Harecrofts (Harecroft near Wilsden) records from 1892 to 1932, 1933-1977.

    By Ray & Marie (Mr. & Mrs. Ella) (28/05/2018)
  • West Yorkshire Archives Services, Bradford branch:

    Ref. 17D92/1: Bingley Zion Primitive Methodist Chapel, York Street Records, quarterly meetings 1858-1932, etc. Stewards Accounts 1895-1932. Ref. 12D78: Deeds 1834-1865. 

    Ref. 40D76/15: Bingley Zion Primitive Methodists: Records to also include Sunday School documents, monumental inscriptions, etc. 

    By Ray & Marie (Mr. & Mrs. Ella) (08/04/2018)
  • The chapel has been demolished

    By Colin Dews (28/02/2018)

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