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Churches of the British Isles

Gallery: Churches of Essex

by Peter Kessler, 22 May 2020

Basildon Part 5: Churches of Laindon (North) & Lee Chapel North

St Peter's Church, Laindon (North), Basildon, Essex

St Peter's Church, Laindon (North) used to sit at the north-west corner of St Nicholas Lane in its old format (pre-roundabout) and Claremont Road (now truncated at Church Mews). This wooden church was opened in 1934 as the area saw increasing plot development. The post-war era saw a new town construction take over from the former, less centralised organisation of development, and the church closed and was demolished around 1969, now surplus to requirements.

Manor Mission Church, Laindon, Basildon, Essex

Manor Mission Church stands on the southern side of Manor Road, at its western end from the High Road. In 1902 nonconformists began holding services and a Sunday school at a rented hall known as Manor Hall. They had close links with the Nightingale Mission in Langdon Hills. In 1924 an independent but undenominational church was established in Manor Hall. They were soon able to open their own chapel here on Manor Road, in 1926. A hall was added in 1930.

Temple of Light Christian Spiritualist Church, Laindon, Basildon, Essex

Temple of Light Christian Spiritualist Church is on the eastern side of Bedford Road in Laindon, fifty metres north of the Durham Road junction. In 1937 Thomas Price joined a spiritualist group. In 1967 he was amazed to find they had no local church, so he went about building one on a site rented from the corporation, with the help of donations and volunteer labour. The work went slowly but the chapel was completed in 1973, when Thomas was aged seventy-one.

Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints, Laindon, Basildon, Essex

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints sits on the southern side of Laindon Link, just a hundred metres east of the junction with Mellow Purgess Close. This part of Basildon was open fieldland at the start of the twentieth century, when the small plotland development of the district had already begun. By the Second World War period that development meant that the church would have sat in the middle of what used to be the semi-developed Albert Drive.

Kingdom Hall of Jehovah's Witnesses, Laindon, Basildon, Essex

Kingdom Hall of Jehovah's Witnesses also sits on the south-western side of the curve of Laindon Link, framed to the north by Tyler Avenue and to the south by Somercotes. The latter street is the post-war rebuild of a much longer street called Buckingham Road, while the hall's site formed the south-western corner of the land surrounding Bluehouse Farm (the present community association buildings lay immediately to the west of the former farm buildings).

St Michael's Mission Church, Lee Chapel (Second Site), Basildon, Essex

St Michael's Mission Church, Lee Chapel (Second Site) stood on the western side of the now-lost Green Lane. The area has been redeveloped to the extent that Green Lane itself no longer exists. What was Green Lane at the point at which the chapel was situated is now the short north-south section of Raleigh Drive shown here. The church's first site was on Salisbury Avenue (see below), replaced by this one in 1935. A wooden building, it was demolished in the 1960s.

St Michael's Mission Church, Lee Chapel (First Site), Basildon, Essex

St Michael's Mission Church, Lee Chapel (First Site) was sited on Salisbury Avenue, probably towards its eastern end which is now heavily wooded between Mandeville Way and the railway. The modern remainder of the alignment of Salisbury Avenue is the footpath shown here which disappears into the trees. The railway company acquired land here, near the line, in the expectation that London would expand here. The chapel opened in 1930 and closed in 1935.

St Paul's Methodist Church, Lee Chapel North, Basildon, Essex

St Paul's Methodist Church is located at the south-west corner of the Ballard's Walk junction with the Teagles cul-de-sac in the Lee Chapel North district. The church opened its doors in 1968 and continues to serve its local congregation to this day. The modern, multi-purpose building has a hall that is used extensively by a variety of community groups, plus a kitchen and two small meeting rooms. It is unclear whether this is an extension of Trinity Methodist Church in Vange.

Ebenezer Gospel Hall, Elizabeth Drive, Basildon, Essex

Ebenezer Gospel Hall stood at the north-east corner of Elizabeth Drive and Raleigh Drive, both gone. The closest point is about a hundred metres north of Wickhay, along the row of houses (in the background here) overlooking St Anne Line RC School playing fields. The church began in 1924 in a Sunday school hut, timber-framed. In 1926 that was replaced by the building shown here. The land was compulsory purchased in 1962 and Ingaway Church replaced it (see links).

The Most Holy Trinity Catholic Church, Wickhay, Basildon, Essex

The Most Holy Trinity Catholic Church in the parish of Our Lady and All Saints sits on the southern side of Wickhay, facing out over Laindon Link to its south. It had very humble beginnings in late 1958, when priests from St Basil's held masses in the centre of Basildon. Between 1960-1963 a new community hall at Kingswood was used, and by 1963 the parish had its own hall, at Roundacre. In 1972 a hall was built at here Wickhay, and the church was constructed in 1980.

Six photos on this page by P L Kessler (from 2011), with one kindly contributed by Ken Porter of Basildon Borough Heritage Society, and one by Ingaway Church.



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