WHY CHAPEL IS WORTH RESTORING & RADIO TIP & HALF AN OPINION ON CEMETERY ROW

METHODISTS OUTDID C OF E IN 1910

The Methodist submission to Dartmoor planners, concerning their old chapel on Station Road, is now online to read, including sketches and plans.

*

Go to

https://www.dartmoor.gov.uk/living-and-working/planning/search-for-an-application/

and enter application number 0473/20

then tick Terms & Conditions box and Start Search.

Then click on application number 0473/20. Then choose either View Documents or Make Comment.

*

The bundle includes a summary by local consultant Nicholas Dean, based Crapstone, of the architectural significance of the chapel, built in 1910.

He writes:

“The 19th century saw a considerable expansion of non-conformist religious activity in the area. At this point in time, its population was approx 870 and the village had a Methodist Wesleyan chapel, a small Anglican church, a Bible Christian chapel and 2 associated Sunday School buildings.

“The village had a factory engaged in the cloth trade, a saw mill and a corn mill. It had a variety of shops, all suggesting it was more than an agriculture based rural settlement. Up to the 1880s its housing stock was, however, predominantly made up of traditional cottages huddled close together, and it was mainly working class.

“From the 1860s, the village was served by the railway, and from the 1880s this may have brought some demographic changes. The late 19th to early 20th century period seems to have been a reasonably prosperous time for Horrabridge, with the majority of the new houses being larger Victorian properties and lower middle-class lateVictorian terraces.

“The earlier Methodist/Wesleyan chapel was in Chapel Lane, a quiet side lane off the main through road. There was also a school room on Whitchurch Rd.

“There may have been a parallel with national trends in the late Victorian and Edwardian years, where new well-crafted chapels were built for or initiated by middle-class congregations. These chapels predominantly used neogothic perpendicular influences, open spaces, long vistas and chancels and an off-set pulpit. Horrabridge’s new Methodist church would fit this pattern quite well. It is of a more ambitious style than that of the Anglican St John The Baptist.

                                                              South gable window with art nouveau glass

“Henry John Snell (1843-1924) of Plymouth is recorded as the Architectrespected for buildings such as the Grand Theatre, Devonport Technical College, the Anglican Church of St Matthew, Stonehouse, and the Devon & Cornwall Institute For The Blind.

“Pevsner refers to Snell as a Renaissance Classicist. In contrast to Snell’s earlier buildings, the Horrabridge Methodist Church, however, is as a whole plainer.

“It does have impressive perpendicular patterned stained-glass windows in carved limestone with Art Nouveau style glass, a carved limestone surround to the entrance door and some decorative beading to internal arches.

“The gothic arched and lancet-headed windows are in carved limestone with trefoil heads, through mullions and hood moulds… (but also, Mr Dean mentions) … “a sense of space more typically associated with the Arts & Crafts period.

“Other details are the limestone surround to the entrance door that has a depressed arch, multiple layers of profile carving and a hood mould, serving a comparatively simple pair of rectangular doors with a small area of glazing in the arch over them. Despite being plain, these doors are well crafted. The internal joinery is again of high traditional quality without being ornamental as such.”

*

The Methodists have promised to restore all the architectural details and re-roof with Delabole slate, using the old tiles as far as possible. They are expecting to spend at least £250,000 and end up with spaces for both worship and community use

The application to Dartmoor planners is the last of the formalities in terms of construction consultation, although discussion on exactly how to use the building will continue.

Main change externally would be a new front entrance, with a glass porch.

Horrabridge Parish Council has until October 29 to express an opinion and will discuss it online at a planning meeting on Tuesday October 27, for immediate notification to DNPA. The rest of us have til November 5.

Meanwhile, find our summary of the story HERE

ps: The wildlife report on the project says the chapel does not appear to have bats but the garden almost certainly has slow worms and ground clearance must be done carefully when the project goes ahead.

*

CEMETERY ROW RUMBLES

Horrabridge Noticeboard erupted at the news that the parish council was enforcing an old rule against grave decorations other than flowers. Some villagers sympathised with the council, trying to keep things tidy and easily maintained, but some thought they were making judgements of taste which were beyond their remit.

The Shed’s view: It’s a communal space, not an owner occupiers estate, and the council is probably right to reckon that the majority of the community would be wary of letting plastic into it. There is surely room for a bit of leniency for new graves for a short while, but the council has to have the right to say time’s up?

*

LISTENING TO RADIO WALKHAM

The Shed had a bit of a breakthrough on the  hi-fi system this week, getting it connected to Radio Walkham. It’s easy enough to get it on a phone or computer, and stream it to some speakers, like most of its listeners presumably do. But those of us who like to hear our radio through a box when we turn a switch have found it hard to tune into.

Now its on the list used by our Brennan B2 and similar media streaming servers such as the Logitech Squeezebox. If you have something like it, try updating its Radio Feeds service and search for Radio Walkham or WKM.

*

and that’s all for now …

About the editor 398 Articles
Editor of The Horrabridge Times.