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Primitive Methodism in Houghton Conquest

How End chapel on a map of 1901
How End chapel on a map of 1901

The Primitive Methodist chapel was built in How End in 1855. Wesleyan Methodism in Houghton Conquest had a much longer history, going back to at least 1805. On 16th May 1861 the Primitive chapel was registered by Edward Bishop of 6 Adelaide Square, Bedford, minister.

Until 1897 the chapel was part of the Bedford Primitive Circuit, changing to the Bedford II Circuit, also known as Cauldwell Street, in 1897. Additional land was purchased for the chapel in 1919 [MB/HC2/3/2094].

In 1932 the Primitive, United and Wesleyan Methodists came together to form the Methodist Church of Great Britain. This meant there were now two Methodist chapels in Houghton Conquest. Despite this the former Primitive chapel in How End continued in use for another forty years, not closing until 1972. For most of the time it formed part of the Bedford South Circuit.

Bedfordshire Archive and Record Service has the following records from the How End chapel:

  • MB2/HC2/3/2094: trust account book: 1900-1967;
  • MB2/HC2/3/2095: chapel accouny book: 1943-1967;
  • MB2/HC2/2/2092: trustees’ minute book: 1946-1962;
  • MB2/HC2/2/2093: trustees’ minute book: 1963-1972;
  • MB2/HC2/3/2096: society and trust account book: 1967-1973;
  • MB2/HC2/6/1522: correspondence regarding closure: 1972-1975.