Wesleyan Methodism in Eggington
The former Methodist chapel December 2008
Eggington first appears in the Leighton Buzzard Circuit records in 1822. At that date there would have been a few Wesleyans who worshipped in the town. It is known that there were also some Primitive Methodists in the village as they turn up in Luton Primitive Circuit records from 1845 to 1858 but Primitivism never took root in Eggington.
On Sunday 30th March 1851 a census of all churches, chapels and preaching-houses of every denomination was undertaken in England and Wales. The local results were published by Bedfordshire Historical Records Society in 1975 as Volume 54, edited by D. W. Bushby. The return for the Methodist chapel was compiled by the leader, James Sanders. The chapel, built in 1845, had 70 free seats and 30 others. The general congregation comprised 29 in the afternoon and 77 in the evening. There was no Sunday school. On 19th April 1861 the Wesleyan chapel was registered for worship by Joshua Mottram of Leighton Buzzard, minister.
In 1867 the present chapel was built. This structure was listed by the former Department of Environment in September 1980 as Grade II, of special interest. It is built of yellow brick and has a slate roof.
In 1932 the Wesleyan Methodists came together with the Primitive and United Methodists to form the Methodist Church of Great Britain. Sadly Bedfordshire and Luton Archives and Records Service has only one item from Eggington chapel itself – the chapel trust account book [MB2/EGG3/3402 which runs from 1936 to 1986. By 1973 the chapel only had five members and closed in the mid 1980s. Today it makes a very attractive private house.
The former Wesleyan Methodist chapel January 2013