Woodmancote: Nonconformity

Pages 167-168

A History of the County of Sussex: Volume 6 Part 3, Bramber Rape (North-Eastern Part) Including Crawley New Town. Originally published by Victoria County History, London, 1987.

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Two Quakers were presented for living together though unmarried in 1676. (fn. 1) In the same year six dissenters in all were listed in the parish, (fn. 2) and in the 1680s five parishioners were presented for non-attendance at church. (fn. 3) There was one Quaker family in 1724. (fn. 4)

At least two, and possibly four, sects had congregations in the parish in the 19th century, despite its small size; the reason was presumably partly the distance of the church from the main settlements. Part of a house at Blackstone was registered for the worship of dissenters in 1829, and another house there, for Independents, in 1839. In 1851 the latter was an out-station of the Henfield Independent chapel, the average congregation being 30. (fn. 5) The building apparently ceased to be used before 1891, when missionary work was said to have been restarted in the parish. (fn. 6) An iron chapel said to be for Baptists was built before 1887 to seat 50; (fn. 7) it may have been the same as the Methodist chapel (Calvinist) which existed at Blackstone in 1896 but had gone by 1909. (fn. 8)


  • 1. S.R.S. l. 20, 44.
  • 2. S.A.C. xlv. 145.
  • 3. W.S.R.O., Ep. II/7/2, f. 9v.; Ep. II/15/4, f. 64; Ep. II/15/7, f. 13v.
  • 4. Ibid. Ep. I/26/3, p. 59.
  • 5. W.S.R.O., Ep. II/25/3, ff. 21, 28; P.R.O., HO 129/ 86/2/7.
  • 6. Pioneers Still: Suss. Cong. Union and Home Missionary Soc. 1849-1949, 19.
  • 7. Kelly's Dir. Suss. (1887, 1895).
  • 8. O.S. Maps 6", Suss. XXXVIII. SW. (1912 edn.); 1/2,500, Suss. XXXVIII. 14 (1897 edn.).