Gloucestershire Places of Worship

Cheltenham Chapel (now 'Jenner Gardens'), Cheltenham (1) (80k) Cheltenham Chapel (now 'Jenner Gardens'), Cheltenham (2) (70k) Cheltenham Chapel (now 'Jenner Gardens'), Cheltenham (3) (91k) Above Photograph(s)
Copyright of Rosemary Lockie
Cheltenham Chapel (now 'Jenner Gardens'), Cheltenham
Cheltenham Chapel (now 'Jenner Gardens') (link to Chapel's website)
St George's Square (Bowling Green),
Cheltenham, Gloucestershire.

Cemeteries

This Chapel had 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 1809, but we understand it was closed in 1987, and the premises are now in secular use.

Built in 1808-9, to a design by local architect Edward Smith, it is reputedly Cheltenham's earliest surviving non-conformist chapel. The first Bethel Baptist Chapel, in Knapp Road, would have predated it, but this was demolished, and replaced with a new building in 1820 (the present Christadelphian Hall).

Cheltenham Chapel's graveyard was opened in 1810. It was closed order of the Home Secretary on 22nd October 1894, but a transcription of its MIs is available from Gloucestershire Family History Society, and there is an index of names on The Friends of Jenner Gardens website.

The Chapel was built originally to provide extra accomodation for worship, as Cheltenham's existing churches and chapels were becoming overcrowded, and initially both Anglicans and Nonconformists shared the building. Its leading promoter was the well known evangelical preacher, Reverend Rowland Hill of Surrey Chapel in London. He was a friend of Edward Jenner, the pioneer of smallpox vaccination, who was living in Cheltenham at this time. Over the years, it has been used by Congregationalists, Presbyterians and the Salvation Army, but as alternative places of worship were built, congregations dwindled, and in 1987 it was converted for office use.

The area it was built on used to be gardens and a carriage turning-space belonging to Jenner's residence in St George's Place. The garden of St George's Square, on its other side, is now Cheltenham Bowling Green, created in 1923, as part of a Ministry of Labour job creation scheme for unemployed servicemen. [Sources: Cheltenham, Current and Former Places of Worship, information plaques in the graveyard, and An Historical Gazetteer of Cheltenham]

Denomination

Now or formerly Independent/Congregational.

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 SO9468822651. 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.
Last updated on 16 Jan 2011 at 14:12.

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This Report was created 28 Jul 2017 - 23:48:13 BST from information held in the Gloucestershire section of the Places of Worship Database. This was last updated on 4 Jul 2017 at 10:50.

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