Webpage created: July 23, 2017.
Webpage updated: July 23, 2017
WESLEY METHODIST CHAPEL
In 1792 the foundation stone of the second Wesleyan chapel to be erected in Plymouth was laid by a Mr Philip Shepherd in the garden of a Mr Prideaux's property in what was then called Mud Lane, later Buckwell Lane. This was the Wesley Methodist Chapel, which was opened the following year.
To it were removed all the fittings from the Lower Street chapel, including the windows and seating. But although it could hold 552 people, the congregation soon outgrew the accommodation and a further chapel had to be provided. This was the Ebenezer Chapel in Saltash Street.
It was hoped to be able to keep both chapels open but prosperity and the population both quickly declined after the end of the Napoleonic Wars that the Wesley Chapel was closed almost as soon as the Ebenezer Chapel was opened. It was let to a succession of other religious bodies starting with the Baptists, who renamed it the Rehobeth Chapel; the Calvinists, who later removed to the Trinity Chapel in York Street; and the Independents.
Eventually, with the Ebenezer Chapel again outgrowing its accommodation, the Methodists took it back and reopened it in September 1847. It was replaced in 1879 by the new Ham Street Chapel premises, which was also known as the New Wesley Chapel.