Chichester: Churches (Non-Anglican)

Page 164

A History of the County of Sussex: Volume 3. Originally published by Victoria County History, London, 1935.

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The Roman Catholic church of ST. RICHARD, Bishop of Chichester, stands at the corner of South Street and Market Avenue. It was built in 1855 in the 13th-century style, as it is said, from designs of the younger Pugin, and is constructed of rubble with ashlar dressings and a steeply pitched slate roof. The building consists of a rectangular nave with a recessed chancel and a gallery at the west end. The entrance is on the south. The exterior is extremely simple, having lights north and south and a sculptured crucifix under the west gable, over which is a small bellcote.

The former Unitarian (originally Presbyterian) Chapel, commonly called Baffin's Hall, at the south end of Baffin's Lane, is now an auction sale room. It was built in 1721 of brick, and has parapet gables and a tiled roof. The plan is a rectangular room with galleries, vestries and entrance vestibule at the east, having gallery stairs on the north and a small courtyard containing tombstones on the south. The hall, which is lighted east and west and round the galleries, has a segmental ceiling of four bays with moulded beams supported on brackets. The galleries are carried by tall octagonal pillars.

The plate consists of a silver porringer 4¼ in. high, 6 in. diameter, weight 13 oz., London date letter 1668, maker's mark EG; silver porringer 4¼ in. high, 5 in. diameter, weight 8 oz. 15 dwt., London date letter 1668, maker's mark TK. These are handsome pieces, apparently made for secular purposes, with embossed ornament. Two pewter plates, 11 in., made by 'R Hitchman in London.' (fn. 1)

The Friends' Meeting House, (fn. 2) with a graveyard on its west side, standing on the south side of Priory Street, forms part of an 18th-century brick house with tiled roof. It is simply furnished, with walnut fittings.

The Providence Chapel (Calvinistic), on the west side of Chapel Street, is a brick building with corrugated iron roof erected in 1809. It has a gallery at the west end.

The Primitive Methodist church, on the west side of the Broyle Road, is a plain rectangular room of flint with brick dressings and slate roof, built in the 19th century in a medieval style.

The chapel of the United Methodist Church in Chichester, known as the Bible Christian Chapel, was built on a site south of the Hornet in 1865, from the design of Mr. Draper of Chichester, in the 13thcentury style. It is of brick with gable-ends and a slated roof, lighted on the north and south and entered centrally at the north end.

The Wesleyan Methodist Chapel, (fn. 3) formerly established at East Walls in 1814, was rebuilt in the 14thcentury style of stone with slate roof in South Street, outside the gate, in 1876–7.

The Congregational Chapel on the west side of South Street was built in 1882, as successor to a chapel in Chapel Street which was built in 1796. (fn. 4) The present chapel is built of stone in a rather florid 15thcentury style, and is entered from the east from a narthex gained by steps from the street. It has a pitched roof of slate with a square cupola placed centrally on the ridge.

The Eastgate Chapel, formerly General Baptist, now Unitarian, was built about 1671 (fn. 5) in the neighbourhood of a pool in the course of the Lavant, shown on Gardner's map of 1769, which was presumably the first place where baptisms took place, though traces have been found pointing to the existence of a later covered baptistry. The present building, of the simplest description, measures 40 ft. by 29 ft. 6 in. It has a coved plaster ceiling supported on six posts, and bears over the principal door the inscription 'Rebuilt 1728.' (fn. 6) There are ledger slabs commemorating Richard Drinkwater, sen., 1743; Ruth, his wife, 1755; James Drinkwater, son, 1760; Mary, his wife, 1769; Thomas Drinkwater, their son, 1747; Mary Dearling, 1791; Sarah Randall Dearling, 1800; John Dearling, 1804; Mary Dearling, his widow, 1808; Joseph Randall, 1806; Jane, daughter of Richard and Jane Osborn, 1734; John, son of the same, 1740; Elizabeth Furlonger (n.d.); Sarah, her daughter, wife of James Dearling, 1729; James, her son, 1751; eight infant children of James Dearling and one infant son of Matthew Randall; James Dearling, sen., 1781; Hannah, his second wife, 1776; Sarah, wife of Joseph Randall, 1786; James and John, sons of John and Mary Dearling, d. infants. (fn. 7) Also mural monumental inscriptions to Charles Alexander Hoddinott, minister, 1908, and John Fullagar, pastor, 1863, the latter removed from the Baffin's Lane Chapel.

The plate consists of two silver two-handled tazze each 4 in. high, 3½ in. diameter, 6½ in. across handles, no maker's mark or date letter, London hall-marks 1658–1677, about 10 oz. each; two pewter dishes, 13¼ in., made by 'Wm. Bartlett not in London.'

The Salvation Army has a hall in Orchard Street, the Plymouth Brethren in Crane Street, and the Dependents in Adelaide Road.


  • 1. Inf. from Mr. W. D. Peckham.
  • 2. a In 1700 it is recorded that the Friends had built a meeting-house in St. Andrew's parish, near 'the Cockpitt house.' Add. MS. 39427, fol. 151.
  • 3. There was a meeting-place at a cottage in North Pallant before this date.
  • 4. Ballard, Hist. of Chich. p. 85.
  • 5. S.A.C. xxix, 221.
  • 6. a On 5 July 1728 Richard Drinkwater desired registration of the malthouse of Mrs. Susan Austen near the east wall of the city for the use of the Baptists. Add. MS. 39422, fol. 105.
  • 7. These ledgers are now floored over. Information from copies made by Mr. G. Lansdown, the present pastor.