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A History of Horncastle by James Conway Walter

Of the buildings in Horncastle

[Picture: Wesleyan Day Schools]

Among the latest ministers of note has been the Rev. John Percy, who gave up his charge as Superintendent in 1904, and was succeeded by the Rev. E. Hayward, who left Horncastle on Thursday, Aug. 29, 1907, for work at Bridlington; he was succeeded by Rev. John Turner, of Colchester, who was 6 years ago in Louth Circuit, {70a} the Rev. G. German Brown continuing as assistant. He was succeeded by the Rev. M. Philipson, B.A., coming, with his wife, since deceased (March 14, 1906), from Stanley, near Durham, where they were the recipients of valuable presents on their departure.

In recent years no member of the society has been more valued than the late octogenarian, Mr. John Rivett, J.P., who died Sept 4, 1906. For nearly 70 years he was a generous supporter of the cause; he represented the district at no less than 13 Conferences, in various parts of the country, and at the Leeds Conference, in 1882, he spoke for an hour and a quarter in advocacy of its principles. Mr. Henry Lunn, of Horncastle and West Ashby, is also well known, as, for many years, an able local lay preacher and practical man of business; he was a representative at Conferences in London and at Burslem.

Of the buildings in Horncastle, connected with this society, we have gathered the following details. As already stated the first chapel was erected in Cagthorpe about the year 1786. It stood a few yards to the north of the present Baptist place of worship, which is close to the north-west corner of the Wong. The early history of this first erection is little known, but a letter written by Rev. T. Williams of Ballarat, dated May 10, 1889, to the late Mr. W. Pacy, states that, after some years, it was replaced by a larger building, of which the dimensions are elsewhere given, as being length 54-ft., by width 36-ft., with 4 large windows, having pointed heads, on the north side, and single windows on the south and west; a small porch at the south-east corner, facing the Baptist Chapel, giving entrance to the body and galleries; a door at the south-west end for the use of the minister, opening near the pulpit, which was at the west end; the eastern gable being the roadway boundary. Of these "pointed" windows the Rev. T. Williams says, "the lancet windows, with quarry panes, were a whim of Mr. Griggs Lunn and of my father. Of this building some remains are still visible, to the height of about 3 feet, in the south wall of Mr. Scholey's garden, about 50 yards to the north of the Baptist Chapel. Towards its erection a number of masons, joiners, and others, who could not afford subscriptions, gave their labours gratuitously. Two houses for ministers were also built close by.

In 1836 a third chapel was begun, on a new site in Union Street (now Queen Street), and was opened on Good Friday in the following year, the interior fittings being transferred from the second building in Cagthorpe.

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