Gloucestershire Places of Worship

We have 3 Images Zion Chapel, Rodborough (1) (108k) Zion Chapel, Rodborough (2) (96k) Zion Chapel, Rodborough (3) (99k) Above Photograph(s)
Copyright of John Williams
Zion Chapel, Rodborough
Zion Chapel   [no longer registered]
Butterrow (Butter Row) Hill,
Rodborough, Gloucestershire.


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 about 1824, but we understand it was closed after 1995, and the premises are now in secular use.

'Zion Chapel' is recorded in Non-Conformist Chapels and Meeting Houses, Gloucestershire (1986) under "Rodborough" with just the bare details from the dedication plaque - which reads: "Primitive Methodist / Chapel / 1856 / Zion". Beneath the plaque is a clock with Roman Numerals, on the face of which is also engraved 2 dates - '1856' and '1981' - a memorial of 125 years of the Chapel's existence.

There is an interesting return to the Religious Census of 1851 (HO 129/338/5/1/2) of a "dwelling house" with "no particular name" which had been opened for 27 years for a congregation of Primitive Methodists. Inside there was free seating for 35, and it had an average congregation of about 20. The return was completed by Jacob Smith, who was "class leder and Lokel precher". His address was "Kings Court, Rodborough, Near Stroud, Gloucestershire".

Thus it seems likely that the congregation of Zion Chapel was formed some years before it was built, evidently about 1824. The Victoria County History series: A History of the County of Gloucester, Volume 11: Bisley and Longtree Hundreds (1976), p.232 (Rodborough - Nonconformity) suggests also that the Primitive Methodists may have been amongst unidentified groups to register 6 houses between 1777 and 1835. Their account also mentions the Butter Row premises, which remained open in 1973, as a Methodist chapel, when it had a congregation of around 12 worshippers.

Incidentally, the oval plaque is similar to that on the former Primitive Methodist ('Ebenezer') Chapel in Painswick, though the latter is less well preserved; perhaps the two chapels had the same architect.


Now or formerly Primitive Methodist.

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 SO8559804093. 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 Rodborough, 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 30 Dec 2014 at 07:24.

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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 17 Aug 2022 - 18:28:46 BST from information held in the Gloucestershire section of the Places of Worship Database. This was last updated on 13 Oct 2021 at 14:13.

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