Alcester Baptist Church

Our Church History

Dating from 1640, our Church was at first an illegal religious gathering, so the early days are undocumented.  It is included in a list of seven Churches which formed the Midland Baptist Association in 1655.

Cromwell favoured religious tolerance and the members could worship in peace; but from 1660, under Charles II, there was persecution.  Alcester Baptist leaders, in particular the minister, John Willis, were many times fined £20 each at Warwick Quarter Sessions, this when the average wage was under £10 a year!

The Declaration of Indulgence in 1687 ended this, and in 1712 the members started a Church Book, which we have today.  101 members are listed for that year, still meeting in the black-and-white house in Meeting Lane.  In 1735 the Meeting House (now the Hall) was built.  During that century, Alcester was in the mainstream of Baptist life in this country.

The building was extended in 1816 to house a flourishing Sunday School of 180 children.  Classes went on all day, with reading and writing as well as RE.  The present Chapel was built in 1859.

The 'Midland Association' no longer exists, and today we are part of the Heart of England Baptist Association, which covers most of the West Midland counties.  The Church has a long tradition of involvement with activities in Alcester, and today this includes closer links with our fellow believers of other Churches through Alcester Churches Together.

MINISTERS

JOHN WILLIS (1660-1705)
JOHN BEDDOME (1697-1724)
BERNARD FOSKETT (1711-1719)
JOHN OVERBURY (1729-1764)
THOMAS SKINNER (1766-1782)
BENJAMIN SPENCER (1782-1788)
WILLIAM PENDRED (1790)
JAMES BIGGS (1790-1796)
DANIEL SPRAGUE (1797)
JAMES SMITH (1798-1812)
JOSEPH PRICE (1815-1841)
JAMES ALLEN (1841-1845)
MOSES PHILPIN (1845-1883)
EDMUND J CROFTS (1884-1889)
JOHN ANDREWS (1900-1936)
HERBERT J TIMEWELL (1938-1939)
SIDNEY A HARRIS (1940-1946)
GEORGE P SHELLEY (1948-1950)
WILLIAM H COX (1951-1960)
HAROLD S WYETT (1960-1975)
MICHAEL P GRANTHAM (1977-1983)
EDWARD H B WILLIAMS (1985-1997)
TIMOTHY HEARD (1998-2000)
ALASTAIR AIRD (2002-2011)
MARTIN MILLS (2013-

  • Church Street
  • Alcester
  • Warwickshire
  • B49 5AJ