Grimston Wesleyan Methodist Chapel, Norfolk

Photo: D Secker

The first Wesleyan chapel here was probably the one built in (or about) 1820 on Lynn Road. With sittings for 176, it was reported to have had many fewer in the pews during the turbulence of Reform: “This place has suffered from secessions in the past year”, wrote the minister in 1851 – the Reformers, opening their own chapel the previous year, had taken a sizable number with them from the Wesleyan.

A new chapel, in the pointed Gothic style to a design by John Hillam of Lynn, opened on Thursday 6th November 1873. Construction, in red brick, with stone dressings and carrstone front gable end, was in the hands of Edward Wanford, builder.

Costing around £400, it seated up to 200, although all sittings were described as “for let”; pew rents, usually associated with the Church of England, were used extensively by Nonconformists in order to guarantee a steady income.

Support for the new chapel came from an unexpected quarter when “for the opening tea, the village schoolroom was placed at the disposal of the Methodists by the esteemed rector of the parish, who was present at the afternoon service, and with true Christian liberality contributed handsomely to the collection”.

The chapel was in the relevant Lynn circuits until closure circa 1980. After this, Methodism has been represented by the former Primitive in the parish hamlet of Pott Row.

Grimston’s old chapel is now a dwelling.

Sources include
Census of Religious Worship (Norfolk) Ed by J Ede and N Virgoe 1998
Norfolk News 15th November 1873
Methodist Buildings: Statistical Returns 1940

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