About UsOther Wesleyan Chapels

In the 19th Century a number of rooms, schools and houses were used by the Wesleyans for worship for short periods of times. In addition, several of the chapels established missions, usually in converted houses, though sometimes halls were hired or built for the purpose. These included the Penton Street Mission (1866-71) which moved to Twyford Hall, Twyford Street (1872-1890), Windsor Hall, Windsor Street (off Essex Road) (from 1866) and the Queensland Road Wesleyan Mission in the Highbury Circuit (1867-82).

The period 1860-1880 saw a remarkable effort in the building of new chapels, in large part due to the generosity of Sir Francis Lycett, whose gift of £50,000 helped to establish the Metropolitan Wesleyan Chapel Building Fund. The intention was to help fund the building of fifty new chapels in London, each receiving a grant of £1,000.

The first chapel to be aided by the fund was Mildmay Park, built 1862. A substantial building that was enlarged over the years, in 1875 it had the largest income of any Methodist chapel in London. Although morning attendance in 1903 was recorded as 401, migration to the suburbs during the following decades saw the congregation decline. The church closed in 1964 and the land was cleared for housing.

Mildmay Park Wesleyan Chapel

Mildmay Park Wesleyan ChapelThere was a considerable Wesleyan presence in the east of the borough. In addition to the afore-mentioned Mildmay Park, Finsbury Park church opened in 1871 on land bought by Sir Francis Lycett at the corner of Wilberforce and Seven Sisters roads, just over the borough boundary.  An iron chapel was replaced by a more permanent building in 1875 and the society became head of the new Finsbury Park Circuit. The history of this church lies beyond the scope of this article; however a daughter church was planted in Gillespie Road in 1878. This filled the 'gap' between the Finsbury Park, Highbury and Mildmay Park Chapels. Gillespie Road closed in 1933 and the congregation united with the former Primitive Methodist congregation at Elwood Street.

Caledonian Road Wesleyan ChurchOn the other side of the borough another chapel established through the Metropolitan Building Fund was Caledonian Road Wesleyan Church, built in 1866 at the junction of Caledonian and Hillmarton Roads. In common with several other churches in the area, this was built in the Gothic style with a lofty spire. However, the congregation never filled the substantial 1,000 seat church and it closed in 1916. The building was subsequently used as a warehouse, returned to use as a place of worship and eventually demolished for housing.

Caledonian Road Wesleyan Church


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Last Updated: 9 March 2020