Grampound Road is 3 kilometres (1.9 miles) north-west of Grampound. This profile of Grampound Road Wesleyan Chapel has been compiled by Jo Lewis and Tony Mansell.
The following notes from a brief history of the Methodist Church at Grampound Road was compiled by Mr S Brock who had 70 years association with its activities
There is evidence of the cause existing for some years before 1866. There is a building now standing in the village where services used to be held, and another old building that stood near the railway station.
Here it is interesting to quote extracts from a letter the writer had from the late Mr F W McCroskie dated 5th of April 1940. He was born in the village in the year 1863.
“The original chapel was the harness room in Mr G James yard. I looked in there once when a service was being held and was very much frightened when I saw several people in the room. Mr Searle, who lived then in the railway house just west of the back of the station, was playing a violin-cello to accompany the singing. Around the room there were brass sconces to hold the candles, probably tallow dips as wax ones were much later. I remember a notice being read from the pulpit telling of a meeting to be held to consider the idea of introducing paraffin lamps in the place of candles. I have no recollection of laying the foundation of the present chapel, nor of the opening services as I was too young but I have a vivid memory of father holding my hand when we walked across the floor beams when the floor was being laid. Also of some of the older men who took part in the erection of the building were Joe Burrows (local preacher), Joseph Coles (storeman), Thomas Bice (gardiner), his son, John Bice, J D Dingle shopkeeper, T Tank (flower merchant) and Frank Truscott (Carpenter).”
From information by the late Mr Theodore Hawken of Truro, who was a local preacher and who was going to write a history of Methodism in the Truro district but died before it was complete, states that previous to the opening of the Cornwall railway there was but a small hamlet, consisting of some half dozen cottages, known as High Lanes, with a farm called Trewince, the residence of the Searle family, where Grampound Road now stands. The station buildings of today occupy, as nearest can be, what was the farmyard. As soon as a railway was opened, or to be accurate, in preparation for the opening, several houses were put up and as soon as the trains ran, this growing hamlet was made a postal centre and mails were distributed by some six mail carts and foot postman from sea to sea, thus Grampound Road soon became of considerable importance.
It is interesting to quote here an article in the West Briton and Cornwall Advertiser dated 22nd of June 1866 headed “Wesleyanism in Cornwall”. “At Grampound Road a suitable edifice is being raised for divine worship to supply the needs of a rising locality.” (DEF)
Plans were prepared for a building capable of seating 104 persons and the work of erection was entrusted to Mr William Mitchell, builder, of Tresilian. The cost was £231.
At the opening services in 1867, during the ministry of the Reverend B Firth, there was a crowded congregation, and great enthusiasm was displayed. The chairman was one of the Truro trustees, and when towards the close of the day’s proceedings the amount raised was stated, it was found that there was a deficit of some pounds on the entire cost. The chairman motioned to his son, who was below in the audience, as to whether they should make a further contribution, having already liberally helped, and on the latter nodding his approval, and other members of the congregation also promised further sums, the doxology was sung, with the chapel being probably the first recently opened in the Circuit free of debt.
The late Theodore Hawken, in some sermon notes which have survived, describes an interesting and significant happening at Grampound Road on Sunday, February the 23rd 1867. For the first time two services were held that day at 3:00 PM and 6:00 PM. The preacher was an old man, well known and somewhat popular. Hawken records that “there came on that occasion, also to the afternoon service, a youth who had walked six or seven miles to hear the preacher. That youth got his call as a preacher from the old man at that service who, in friendly conversation at the close, gave him some good advice, which he has never forgotten and which had helped him much in his Ministry in the USA Where he has laboured with acceptance and success for more than 20 years. The old man at the service was brother William Annear and the youth was Ed Drew.
The first baptism was registered on the 10th of August 1867.
The names of the first class leaders were: A Hooper, who started a class on a Friday, and was followed by J Burrows, one a Probus and the other a Ladock man. The members of the class were: A Hooper (leader) W Searle, Thomas Bice, Mrs Burrows and Mr and Mrs F Truscott. The society at this time numbered eight and contributed to Quarter Board £2.14.9d.
Wesleyan chapel plus attached Sunday School, now Methodist with shared use with Anglican Church. Circa 1870, schoolroom added slightly later plus rubble and granite forecourt walls plus some wrought-iron railings. Chapel is killas rubble with granite dressings, schoolroom has rendered walls under a dry slate roof with some crested and pierced ridge tiles. Chapel has round-arched window openings with original margin-pane sashes. Late C19 gabled porch to front gable end has granite dressings including a bracket detail to door lintel and a dry slate roof with crested ridge tiles. (Cornwall Council Heritage Gateway)
Grampound Road Wesleyan Chapel (Photo: Jo Lewis 2017)
Grampound Road Wesleyan Sunday school (Photo: Jo Lewis 2017)
1866: Build date. (Cornwall Council Heritage Gateway / SWChurches)
Built as a Wesleyan chapel. (SWChurches)
1867: Registered for baptisms.
1880: Appears on map. (old.maps.co.uk)
1899: “…The Wesleyans of Grampound Road have for some time been contemplating the enlargement of their chapel…” (Royal Cornwall Gazette – Thursday 28 December 1899)
Grampound Road Methodist Band of Hope 1905
1912: “Grampound Road Wesleyan Band of Hope was held on Friday when members and friends met in the schoolroom, and after parading the village, headed by Fraddon Coronation Band, sat down to a public tea…” (11 April 1912 – West Briton and Cornwall Advertiser)
1912: Chapel re-opened following renovation. (West Briton and Cornwall Advertiser – Thursday 08 August 1912)
1912: Chapel recently renovated. (West Briton and Cornwall Advertiser – Thursday 19 September 1912)
1922: Specifications, enlargement of school, Grampound Road Wesleyan Chapel, Ladock. Enlargement and addition of school and classroom. (Kresen Kernow MRT/904)
1923: Agreement, rights to light and air, Grampound Road Wesleyan Chapel, Ladock. Agreement with Great Western Railway regarding air and light to chapel windows. Includes plans. (Kresen Kernow MRT/906)
1922-1923: Agreements, building work, Grampound Road Wesleyan Chapel, Ladock. Agreements for mason’s and carpenter’s work, completion of masonry and interior work. (Kresen Kernow MRT/905)
1898-1928: Trust minutes, Grampound Road Wesleyan Chapel. (Kresen Kernow MRT/166)
20th century Photograph, interior of Grampound Road Methodist Church. Not dated. (Kresen Kernow X540/9)
1928: Sunday school build date.
1932: The Wesleyan, Primitive Methodist and the United Methodist Church amalgamated to become the Methodist Church of Great Britain.
1932: Became Grampound Road Methodist Church. (SWChurches)
Part of Truro Methodist Circuit. (SWChurches)
1944: 77th Anniversary Celebrations. (Cornish Guardian – Thursday 22 June 1944)
1963: (CO-OPERATION MOVE BY METHODISTS APPROACH TO ANGLICANS AT GRAMPOUND ROAD A move towards greater cooperation between the two local churches was made by Grampound Road Methodist Church Council at the council’s annual meeting on Wednesday last week. It was agreed that an approach should be made to the Parish Church with a view to reaching agreement on the closing of each church in turn for the other’s harvest festival service. It was hoped that this might lead to further and closer co-operation between the two churches. If the Anglicans preferred some other Sunday for this purpose there was no need to limit the proposal to the harvest services…” (Cornish Guardian – Thursday 11 April 1963)
Dec 1966: Centenary brochure, Grampound Road Methodist Church, Ladock. Booklet, Centenary celebrations and chapel history, by S Brock. Celebrations held 9 to 11 December. (Kresen Kernow MRT/1057)
1970: Correspondence, Grampound Road Methodist Church, Ladock. Received by church secretary. Includes copies of some replies. (Kresen Kernow MRT/1048)
Nov 1971: Handbill, 105th anniversary, Grampound Road Methodist Church, Ladock. Handbill advertising anniversary thanksgiving service and banquet, 27 to 28 November 1971. (Kresen Kernow MRT/1058)
1975-1976: Correspondence, Grampound Road Methodist Church, Ladock. Received by church secretary. Includes copies of some replies. (Kresen Kernow MRT/1045)
1977: Correspondence, Grampound Road Methodist Church, Ladock. Received by church secretary. Includes copies of some replies. (Kresen Kernow MRT/1046)
1973-1978: Correspondence, Sunday School, Grampound Road Methodist Church, Ladock. Also vouchers. (Kresen Kernow MRT/1053)
1978: Correspondence, Grampound Road Methodist Church, Ladock. Received by church secretary. Includes copies of some replies. (Kresen Kernow MRT/1047)
1980: Correspondence, Grampound Road Methodist Church, Ladock. Received by church secretary. Includes copies of some replies. (Kresen Kernow MRT/1049)
1980: Estimates, work on Grampound Road Methodist Church, Ladock. Estimates and correspondence, re-decoration and repairs to chapel. Kresen Kernow MRT/1050)
1980: Estimates, repairs to Grampound Road Methodist Church, Ladock. Estimates and correspondence, temporary repairs to chapel following storm damage. (Kresen Kernow MRT/1051)
1979-1981: Papers, repairs to Grampound Road Methodist Church, Ladock. Estimates and correspondence, repair of chapel following storm damage. Also insurance papers, 1979-
- (Kresen Kernow MRT/1052)
1974-1983: Minutes, Church Council, Grampound Road Methodist Church, Ladock. (Kresen Kernow MRT/1042)
From 1984, the congregation combined with that from the Chapel of Ease to form an Anglican/Methodist Ecumenical Church.
18 Jan 1984: Order of service, inauguration of ecumenical project, Grampound Road, Ladock. Inauguration of Grampound Road Local Ecumenical Project, between the Methodist and Anglican churches. (Kresen Kernow MRT/1117)
1984, an Anglican/Methodist Ecumenical Church Local Project. (SWChurches)