Fringe Box



Church’s Celebration Dinner Held Where They Started in 1690!

Published on: 27 Jun, 2012
Updated on: 27 Jun, 2012

Members and friends of Guildford United Reformed Church packed out Loch Fyne Restaurant to capacity on Sunday evening. 

The Bishop of Guildford, the Rt Rev’d Christopher Hill, with some of the children who attended the URC’s celebration.

The dinner marked a return to the original site of what was originally the Congregational Chapel, founded on the site in 1690 and rebuilt in 1802 in the building which stands today. A new church was later constructed in North Street, and moved to its present site in Portsmouth Road in 1965, but the Chapel Street building continued in use by the Sunday school for many years.

The Bishop’s speech is enjoyed by the Rev’s Phillip Jones.

Guildford YMCA was founded there in the mid-19th century, and its present director, Pete Brayne, was among the guests at the celebration dinner. The 9th Guildford Scouts also met there for more than 50 years – they are thriving today in the new building.

The Bishop of Guildford, the Rt Rev’d Christopher Hill, also joined the partyHe spoke of his delight that, after 350 years, the Church of England and the United Reformed Church are no longer bitterly divided by the differences in opinion which caused the then Rector of St Nicolas Church to lose his job in 1662 for refusing to conform, against his conscience

Time to celebrate.

Event organiser Fiona Yeomans said: “We really appreciated the way the team at Loch Fyne looked after us. They entered into the spirit of the whole occasion and I think they found the historical aspect interesting. And they found out that church-goers can let their hair down and enjoy a good party!”

 Photographs by Michael Lloyd and Phil Groves. 

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