John Nelson was instrumental in establishing a Methodist community in the village, having founded one at Acomb near York. He came in 1746, whilst staying at Milford Hall nearby. His service took place in the open air near where the old chapel was later rebuilt. A regular meeting house was organised in 1780 and the first chapel built in 1827. It is to the rear (the last chimneys mark the building). For 12 years it was unheated and a stove was in place by 1839, put in by the Sunday School. The first Band of Hope was held here in 1883 and the same year a library of books was added but ceased after a few years due to the expense of buying new books.
By 1913 a new chapel was needed and was added to the front, as seen on the postcard. It can hold 180 people, has an organ chamber and arrangements for the choir. The old chapel was to remain for the use of the Sunday School.
It was printed at the time of the opening of the chapel. This one was written on November 1st, 1918 a few days before the end of hostilities of the 1st World War. It was written to a visitor who was due to speak on the 3rd but had not been in touch with them. It remarks: “I am sorry but things are very much upset just at the moment owing to the war”. A service of thanksgiving was held in the chapel on November 13th, just 2 weeks later, to celebrate the cessation of hostilities.
Thanks for the information go the granddaughter of the person who wrote the card, who was amazed to see her relative’s handwriting on the card.