When set up in 1851, the Knaresborough circuit consisted of Knaresborough chapel itself and nine village societies. By 1929 there was only one – at Hay-A-Park. Some had been transferred to other circuits, but others simply closed. In 1911, the Christian Messenger explains the circumstances. “There are now only four other preaching places on the (Knaresborough circuit) plan, viz., Spofforth, Whixley, Arkendale and Hay-a-Park.
Unfortunately our hold upon these villages is gradually weakening. This is a purely agricultural neighbourhood, and when our young people become old enough to work, they are compelled to seek employment elsewhere. At one time were eleven local preachers at Spofforth, and at both Whixley and Arkendale we had vigorous causes. … … At the present time, however, we are only just keeping the door of one or two of our village chapels open. Our officials are hoping that the Government will bring in a drastic measure of Land Reform, which will bring a few families into the neighbourhood who are interested in Primitive Methodism.”
I can’t find Hay-A-Park chapel on early Ordnance Survey maps. Any suggestions?
Christian Messenger 1911/187