The Victorian church-building boom
"One wonders how many buildings from this church building boom of staggering
proportions actually survive and how many in 2003 are still in use as places of worship. Having lived in a city with a declining population, Salford, for a number of years, it is apparent that no longer can the various churches afford the upkeep of all their places of worship. Between 1945 and 1986, the Anglican Diocese of Manchester closed no fewer than fifty Anglican churches in the twin cities of Manchester and Salford. Proportionately, there were similar levels of closure by the Roman Catholic Diocese of Salford. Nonconformist places of worship had even greater losses. Same of the cIosures were forced by the wholesale re-development of large areas ..." David H. Kennett
|1. Salford Reporter ca. 1976|
click on images to enlarge
1. Unitarian Free Church, Pendleton (Cross Lane) was founded on 20 January 1861 as a mission, and operated from a small chapel on Ford Street, Pendleton, As the congregation grew, it was decided to build a new church on Cross Lane, which opened on 2 June 1874. Its first minister was Robert Laird Collier, an American. It was built to accommodate about 400 people. Budgetary constraints demanded that its red-brick construction did not exceed £3,000, The church was designed by the local architect, Thomas Worthington, himself a Unitarian. It had a semi-circular chancel, and contained a First World War memorial. The Victorian church was demolished in 1976, eventually to make room for a more modern icon.
|Source: The British Architect 1877|
2. St John Methodist Church, Weaste was located on the corner of Langworthy Road and Liverpool Street. Pevsner (1969) dates it to 1891/2, but the church registers show that baptisms were conducted there as early as 1878. It was demolished in the late 1970s. The church contained a stained-glass memorial window and bronze plaque to the First World War dead -- lest we forget?
|Photo credit: SWARM|
|St. John's, Seedley: final days|
Photo credit: Salford_66
3. Brunswick Wesleyan Methodist Chapel, Broad Street, Pendleton, The opening service of the newly built chapel took place on 15 April 1881, and it closed in 1977. A petition to have the building listed, so that it might be preserved, was rejected by the Department of Environment. It has since been demolished.
|2. Brunswick Chapel, Pendleton|
|3. British Architect 11 April 1879|
Caption: Selected Design for Brunswick Chapel, Pendleton
This design, submitted under the motto "Bona Fides",
has been chosen in a limited competition. The plan of chapel
accommodates 1,100 persons, as follows - Ground floor, 610;
gallery, 302; fall seats, 70; scholars seats, 150, and choir 40.
Three class-rooms or vestries, with choir vestry over, with lavatories
& c, are provided. A lecture hall at the back accommodates 162, and has
direct communication with the chapel. It is provided with vestry,
lavatory, & c. A wagon-shaped ceiling is shown in section for the
chapel roof. Yorkshire stone dressings, with parpoints from Southowram,
are proposed for general walling. The estimated cost is £8,584. The architect is
Mr. R. Knill Freeman, of Bolton.
The church seen above was preceded by a more modest structure, which was opened on 28 August 1814 by the Primitive Methodist congregation. James Butterworth describes it in the following"
"Pendleton, a very beautiful village now adjoining to Salford, is Brunswick-Row Chapel, belonging to the Old Methodists' Connection , built by subscription. It is small and neat, and has a cemetery attached to it." The chapel was built of brick and stone, and modelled on the Oldham Street Chapel in Manchester, Brunswick Chapel was enlarged twice before it was demolished to make way for the new building. By 1836 it could accommodate 600 worshippers. The chapel also operated a Sunday school.
|Salford City Reporter 1976|
History of Brunswick Chapel, Pendleton: With Notices of Early Methodism in Manchester and Salford (1880)
 See also Cornish (1857)
 The cemetery of the chapel was closed, and its bodies exhumed and moved in 1879 in preparation for the construction of the new church.