Mapping Methodism – Tolskithy Wesleyan Association Chapel / United Methodist Free Church

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Tolskithy is a hamlet west of Redruth. This profile of Tolskithy United Methodist Free Church has been compiled by Jo Lewis and Tony Mansell.


1846 Tolskithy Wesleyan Association Chapel / United Methodist Free Church

1846: Build date. (Genuki)

Built as Wesleyan association Chapel. (Genuki)

Thomas Ellery, minister. (Genuki)

Built as a Wesleyan Association Chapel.

Seating for 100. (Genuki)

There was a Free Methodist Society by 1858. (Unknown book)

1880: Appears on map. (

1907: Became the Sunday school when the later chapel was built.

1857: The Wesleyan Methodist Association and the Wesleyan Reform Church amalgamated to become the United Methodist Free Churches

Became a farm building. (Unknown book)


1890 Tolskithy United Methodist Free Church

Site of Free United Methodist chapel. Rubble forecourt walls survive plus possible remains of late C19 or early C20 building under mound overgrown with vegetation. Marked as extant on the 2nd Edition 1:2500 1907 OS Map but not on the 1st Edition 1:2500 1880 OS Map. Probably constructed to replace an earlier C19 chapel to the north east (see 143147 ) which then became the Sunday School. The ruins of the chapel are visible on air photographs (p1) and were plotted as part of the NMP. Both Chapel and Sunday School are now ruins and covered with vegetation. (Cornwall Heritage Gateway)

1890: “The United Methodists of Tolskithy near Redruth, have decided to erect a new chapel on a freehold site which Lord Robartes has given, near the old building, which is to be used as schoolroom. Mr Hill, architect, Redruth, has prepared plans for the chapel, which when completed will have a plain, substantial exterior, and will be built of local stone, with granite dressings and cement gable mouldings The joinery is to be of pitch pine and deal. The pews are to be open ones, and will seat 160 persons, but in addition hinged seats are to be placed in aisles, be used when necessary, to accommodate 200. besides the provision made for the choir in an orchestra behind the rostrum. Tenders for the work were opened on Saturday .and that of Mr J Odgers. Redruth (£300) was accepted. Five members of the Redruth Society are trustees of the chapel, in connection with several others from Tolskithy.” (Cornubian and Redruth Times – Friday 28 March 1890)

1890: “TOLSKITHY FREE METHODIST CHAPEL. LAYING OF THE MEMORIAL STONES. On Wednesday the ceremony of the memorial stone laying took place for the new chapel which is in course of erection at Tolskithy. The sanctuary was much needed, as accommodation was insufficient and unsuitable. It is being erected a few yards from the old building, on more elevated site, and judging from present appearances it will both convenient and handsome. The front is of dark sandstone, relieved with white cut granite, and the seating accommodation of the chapel when complete will be sufficient for 150 persons ; the dimensions are 38 by 28 feet. The opening services are expected to take place in October. Afterwards the old building will be altered for use as school. The architect is Mr Hill, and the builder Mr Odgers…” (Cornubian and Redruth Times – Friday 20 June 1890)

1890: Build date. (Cornubian and Redruth Times – Friday 20 June 1890)

1907: The Methodist New Connexion, Bible Christians and United Methodist Free Churches amalgamated to become the United Methodist Church.

1908: Appears on map. (

Early 1900s Tolskithy United Methodist Sunday School Tea Treat (Photo: courtesy Paddy Bradley)

1928: Closure date. (Unknown book)



In Memory of Tolskithy Chapel

February 2024: Mike Thorn wrote: “Last year I purchased Tolskithy Chapel and grounds as I didn’t want the chapel lost or forgotten. So little is known or recorded – even speaking to local people all over 80 years old who have knowledge or family connections with it. I’m hoping to put together a folder of its history before it is lost forever. I was hoping for a photo of the Chapel. As I’m clearing many years of brambles I’m finding pieces of the building – it’s like putting together a jigsaw puzzle without a picture, I hope to preserve what’s left of the walls.”

February 2024: Mike Thorn wrote: “So far a friend and I have replaced the gateway stones and I had a gate made to my design and we’ve hung that. My concern was that someone may have a stone fall on them. I have also rebuilt a section of boundary wall that had fallen due to overgrown trees and bad weather and removed trees and shrubs from the walls and grounds. I’m currently in the process of removing brambles after many years of neglect, hard work but enjoyable.”

Mike Thorn’s photographs:










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