Derbyshire Places of Worship

Oaker Chapel, Wensley (42k) Above Photograph(s)
Copyright of Janet Kirk
Oaker Chapel, Wensley
Oaker Chapel   [no longer registered]
Oaker Side,
Wensley, Derbyshire.

Cemeteries

We believe the Chapel did NOT have a graveyard.

Note: any church within an urban environment may have had its graveyard closed after the Burial Act of 1853. Any new church built after that is unlikely to have had a graveyard at all.

Church History

This Place of Worship was founded in 1851, but we understand it was closed by 1991, and the premises are now in secular use.

White's Directory of Sheffield and 20 miles round for 1852 (under the heading of "Wensley and Snitterton"), records that Okerhill is said to be the site of the Roman station Occursus. Only Cross-green Church (St Mary's) is recorded as a place of worship, but the 1857 edition for Derbyshire is more forthcoming, listing (under the heading of "Wensley") that "the Methodists have a chapel, built of stone, in 1830 [and] the Wesleyan Reformers have also a neat brick chapel on Oker side, erected by subscription in 1851, at a cost of £130, [which] will seat about 90".

It would appear, therefore, that the present building, dating from 1854, may have replaced an earlier building. Perhaps this was the "Room" described in the Religious Census of 1851 (HO 129/449/2/6/15). This had been erected in Snitterton as a separate building, used exclusively as a place of worship, at an unspecified date. It had seating for 50, all free, and the estimated congregation on March 30th was 25 in the afternoon, compared with an average over the last 12 months of 25 at morning service. The return was completed by William Yeomans, a Local Preacher, who described himself as "Farmer, Snitterton, Derbyshire". [A Farmer named Wm. Yeomans was recorded in White's Directory of 1857 living at Lea Wood]

Interestingly, a second place of worship for Wesleyan Reformers was recorded on the Religious Census at Darley Bridge, in Wensley, in a dwelling house. Its return was completed by a Thomas Yeomans, of Warren Carr, also a Farmer.

The following notice in The London Gazette of 2nd March 1934 (p.1445) recorded Oker Chapel's registration for marriages:

A Separate Building, duly certified for religious worship, named METHODIST CHURCH, situated at Oker Side, in the civil parish or Wensley, in Bakewell registration district, in the county of Derby, was, on the 26th February, 1934, registered for solemnizing marriages therein, pursuant to 6 & 7 Will. IV, c.85. Dated 28th February 1934.

A corresponding notice of cancellation of the registration of "METHODIST CHURCH, Oker Side, Wensley" was published in the Gazette of 18th September 1991 (p.14207).

The following information about the Chapel has been provided to accompany the photographs on the right. A list of people who have supplied the information is included in the Acknowledgements, below.

[Image 1] The Chapel (at Oaker Side) may be found on the north side of the road from Matlock to Wensley, between the turnings to Oker Lane and Will Shore's Lane.

An Inscription on the tablet above the porch reads - “Wesleyan Methodist Reform Chapel 1854”. There is (or was) stepped seating inside, according to Non-Conformist Chapels and Meeting Houses, Derbyshire (HMSO, 1986).

Please note that although the notice board on the left suggests it may have been open for worship at the time this photo was taken (2005), the chapel is now in private ownership.[1]

Denomination

Now or formerly Wesleyan Reform.

If more than one congregation has worshipped here, or its congregation has united with others, in most cases this will record its original dedication.

Maps

This Chapel was located at OS grid reference SK2751460951. You can see this on various mapping systems. Note all links open in a new window:

Reference

  • Places recorded by the Registrar General under the provisions of the Places of Worship Registration Act 1855 (2010) is available as a "Freedom of Information" document from the website What Do They Know.

Acknowledgements

A special thanks to the following people who have contributed information for this web page:

1. Information provided by Janet Kirk/Rosemary Lockie.

Last updated on 19 Jan 2015 at 13:43.

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This Report was created 12 Nov 2017 - 20:15:52 GMT from information held in the Derbyshire section of the Places of Worship Database. This was last updated on 4 Jun 2017 at 08:14.

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