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Mount Charles Wesleyan Methodist Chapel
occupies a deep-but-narrow plot on the northern side of Victoria
Road opposite the entry to Wesley Place. Originally known as
Victoria Road Church, the first chapel here seems to have been
built around 1888 - by Sylvanius Trevail - to replace an earlier
chapel on Wesley Place (see below). In the 1970s it amalgamated with
the nearby Bridge United Free Methodists (below), and the present
building was erected here in the 1990s.
The Old Mount Charles Wesleyan Chapel,
Wesley Court, is located on the west side of Wesley Place,
virtually opposite its replacement (above). The OS 25-inch map
of 1892-1914 shows this building to be operating as a Sunday
School, doubtless for the chapel. However, it only became such
in 1888, prior to which it seems likely to have been the earliest
of the three Victoria Road-area chapels. It was recently converted
into a private dwelling and sold on the open market.
The Salvation Army Chapel, Ranelagh Road,
sits on the southern side, with its back to the railway and about
ninety metres west of the Clifden Road junction. This was the site
of St Augustine's Roman Catholic Chapel, the town's first
purpose-built Catholic chapel, constructed in 1913 to replace a
temporary meeting. In turn it was replaced by St Augustine's Church
in 1937 (see links). By 1969 the Salvation Army had their own
building on the site and this still stands.
Bridge United Methodist Free Church stood
on the eastern side of Clifden Road, virtually opposite Ranelagh
Road. The railway bridge was just fifty metres to the south, hence
the name. It existed by 1881, and there are Trust accounts up to the
1950s and Sunday School records to 1964. In later years 'united' and
'free' were dropped from the name and it eventually merged with
Victoria Road chapel to form Mount Charles Methodist Church (above).
It was demolished in 1985.
Union Road Primitive Methodist Chapel was
set back from the western side of Clifden Road (formerly Union
Road) just twenty metres north of Rashleigh Place. A chapel existed
in the 1820s, replaced by this one in 1859. It remained active
(according to records) until 1947. It is probable that this the
Wrestling Downs Chapel mentioned in other records (also known as
St Austell Downs Chapel), where annual wrestling matches took
place. Closure took place around 1946.
Polkyth Road Chapel (unconfirmed) sits on
the southern side of the street just thirty metres west of the
Clifden Road corner. It is not marked on OS maps of the late
Victorian period or those of the twentieth century, but it is listed
elsewhere online as a possible chapel. An 1881 map shows a Sunday
School almost directly opposite this site (now gone) which may have
been associated with the Primitive Methodist chapel on Clifden Road
(above), or possibly with this building.
Seymour Gospel Church (Christian Fellowship)
is on the western side of Slades Road, around thirty metres north of
Eddystone Road. A small group of believers met around 1900 at Pound
House in the High Street. They later met in a private home - Seymour
Villa at Slades. They opened a gospel hall nearby in 1925. By 2009
that hall was dilapidated and in need of a lot of work. The decision
was taken to demolish it and replace it entirely with the present
Carclaze Methodist Church is on the
eastern side of Treverbyn Road, opposite the Gribben Road junction.
It was built in 1820 as Carclaze Bible Christian Chapel, and
was originally known as Bethseda Chapel. It was possibly
enlarged or rebuilt in 1870. Between 1907 and 1932 it was a United
Methodist church. It was only at the Methodist union of 1932 that it
acquired its present name, and a Sunday School was already attached
to the rear of the chapel building.
St Luke's Church, Boscoppa meets at Bishop
Bronescombe School. The parish of Boscoppa is relatively young,
having only been created in April 1993 by dividing the parish of
Charlestown, as the population of nearby Boscoppa and Phernyssick
had grown in size over preceding years. The church is dedicated to
St Luke, but Bishop Bronescombe is another very important figure:
born around 1220, he was a bishop of Exeter who helped spread
Christianity in Cornwall.
Bethel Bible Christian Chapel (First Site)
stood near the north-east corner of the Trenowah Road and Brockstone
Road junction, in the Bethel part of St Austell. It was built in
1822, forty-five metres west of its successor (which is visible in
the near distance). The congregation clearly outgrew the chapel
rather quickly as the new chapel replaced this one in 1836. The
old chapel was later converted into the two brown-walled cottages
standing near the camera.
Nine photos on this page by Jo Lewis, and
one kindly contributed by Cornwall Memory.