Derbyshire Places of Worship

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United Reformed Church ('Sion Chapel'), Ashbourne
United Reformed Church ('Sion Chapel')   [no longer registered]
Derby Road (formerly New Road), DE6 1BE,
Ashbourne, Derbyshire.


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 1801, but we understand it was closed in 1998, and the premises are now in secular use.

This is a red-brick building, which came into use in May 1801 originally by a Countess of Huntingdon's Connexion, which had been meeting in the former Presbyterian Chapel in St John Street. It was endowed by Mr John Cooper, a member of the committee of the Spa Fields Chapel in London, and a native of Ashbourne. Cooper was also responsible for the erection of the row of single-storey almshouses attached to the church, in 1800.

So says the booklet Non-Conformist Chapels and Meeting Houses, Derbyshire (1986). The return to the Religious Census of 1851 (HO 129/447/3/1/3) for "Sion Chapel" in the "Township of Sturston, Parish of Ashborne" describes a separate building, erected in 1800 for a Countess of Huntingdon congregation, used exclusively as a place of worship. It had free seating for 100, and 240 "other" sittings, and had an estimated congregation on March 30th of 143 in the morning, 88 in the afternoon, and 133 in the evening, with 90 Sunday Scholars at classes in the morning and afternoon. The return was completed by Henry Hollis, its Minister, of "Chapel House, Ashbourn, Derbyshire". He remarked that "the Chapel is generally considered as belonging to the Countess of Huntingdon's Connection, but the form of Church government is Independent".

Though the building is now closed for worship, it is understood that at some later date the church became Congregational, and subsequently in 1972, a member of the United Reformed Church. The Derbyshire Record Office hold records of baptisms for a period beginning in 1787, when the congregation were meeting in St John's Street. There was also a burial ground attached, for which records exist for a period beginning in 1808. The address the DRO give for the Chapel is "Derby Road (formerly New Road), Compton", and its closing date is given as 1998. The DRO also hold records of marriages for a period beginning 1874, and ending 1997. An appropriate notice of the cancellation of the registration of "United Reformed Church, Derby Road, Ashbourne" for marriages was published in The London Gazette of 9th October 1998 (p.10974), but I was unable to find a corresponding notice of its original registration.

Both almshouses, and church (now in private ownership, and known as "The Chantry") are Grade II Listed Buildings - see the British Listed Buildings website for details.


Now or formerly 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.


This Chapel was located at OS grid reference SK1813446302. You can see this on various mapping systems. Note all links open in a new window:


I have found many websites of use whilst compiling the information for this database. Here are some which deserve mention as being of special interest for Ashbourne, and perhaps to Local History and Places of Worship as a whole.

The above links were selected and reviewed at the time I prepared the information, but please be aware their content may vary, or disappear entirely. These factors are outside my control.

Information last updated on 11 Nov 2014 at 11:30.

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Further Information

This site provides historical information about churches, other places of worship and cemeteries. It has no affiliation with the churches or congregations themselves, nor is it intended to provide a means to find places of worship in the present day.

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This Report was created 29 Nov 2023 - 02:58:57 GMT from information held in the Derbyshire section of the Places of Worship Database. This was last updated on 13 Oct 2021 at 14:33.

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