Kirkbymoorside Primitive Methodist Chapel

West End, Kirkbymoorside, YORK, YO62 6AF

Kirkbymoorside Primitive Methodist chapel
Keith Guyler 1992
Photo taken June 2018 by E & R Pearce
Photo taken June 2018 by E & R Pearce
Photo taken June 2018 by E & R Pearce
Photo taken June 2018 by E & R Pearce

Primitive Methodists in Kirkbymoorside started out in Bethel Chapel in Tinley Garth around 1840 and in 1861 moved to a newly erected Jubilee Chapel in West End.

The foundation stone was laid on May 3rd 1861 – when most conveniently the sun came out and the rain stopped just in time for a grand parade to the new site and to see Henry J.McCulloch Esq., of York, lay the stone with a silver trowel and a mahogany mallet. Speakers included Revs. T. Newell, — Story (Independent), G. N.Hutchinson, and J.Milner; together with Messrs. W.T.Lumley, J. Smith,and J. Storr. The predicted cost was £1,000. Thomas Dearlove wrote the description.

At the time of Methodist Union in 1932, the Jubilee Chapel was in the Pickering circuit. In 1969, the Jubilee Chapel closed.  

The remaining congregation joined with the congregation at the Independent chapel in Piercy End and the building was sold. The proceeds from the sale of the Jubilee chapel were used to build the Jubilee Room extension to the current chapel which was opened on 15 June 1971.

In Keith Guyler’s photograph and on Google Street View in September 2011, the rather elegant building is shown as converted into  flats.


Primitive Methodist magazine August 1861 pages 501-502


Comments about this page

  • Thanks for the detail Pat – it adds colour to the outline.

    By Christopher Hill (30/03/2020)
  • Kirbymoorside Primitive Methodist Society
    A “lowly building” was acquired at Kirby in 1824 to serve as a Chapel. It continued until c1860s, when it was reported that the society had opened “a new and elegant chapel in West End”. The foundation stone of a new schoolroom was also laid in 1861. The Chapel of 1861 was built to house the larger meetings of the district as well as to serve the town. It is said that when the plans were made, the stewards forgot to make any provision for getting up to the gallery. George Stynn? of York was the architect. He produced a rather elaborate design, using yellow brick with Italianate details. There was a pedimented front with rusticated brick pilasters, an open staircase rising over the basement floor to the entrance doors. The interior was well lit and finely decorated. Here the congregation continued actively their many functions. The Sunday School, 56 scholars in 1856, met in the hall. A strong temperance movement was supported, and the Lumley’s became noted for their women’s prayer meetings. Later writers spoke of “the sterling quality of the women here”. There was a large Young People’s Endeavour. Early in the 20c, Mr J. W. Lumley was choir master and school secretary and the “genial and faithful” Mr W. Donald was society steward. A Mrs Clarke who “saw the Ranters come to town” was still living in 1909.
    An outstanding personality in the society was John Lumley, a self-taught man, who began work as a farm labourer but became a schoolmaster and druggist. He early read through the New Testament once a month, and mastered the points of disagreement between Calvinism and Arminianism. He is said to have committed to memory the whole of the Epistle to Romans. In 1838, he lost his position with the Wesleyan Methodists due to his unwillingness to pledge himself not to preach to other denominations. In 1840, he joined the Primitive Methodists ultimately becoming a local preacher, school superintendent and class leader. In 1844, he published a work on “The Necessity, Nature and Design of the Atonement”. Between 1845 and 1850, he lived in the United States where he died. William Thompson Lumley continued the family tradition serving the circuit for 63 years till his death in 1897, a “powerful factor” in the district.
    Ref: They Kept Faith – John Ruston A Beck Isle Museum Publication

    By Pat Donnor (30/03/2020)

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