Alton Methodist Church
Though Methodism had become widespread in England by the end of the Nineteenth Century, it was not until the 1830's that preachers from Independent Churches (that is, not the Church of England) began to visit Alton. They got a rough reception — several were driven from the town by stone throwing mobs!
However in 1842 a young minister, the Revd. Henry Needle began to visit the town regularly and by May 1843, Alton had its own Methodist preacher, the Revd. J. Gostick. Services were held in a variety of places as numbers grew; in rooms in private houses, a shed, a barn, a hop kiln and even in the open air.
In 1846 the Methodist Church was opened at the western end of the High Street, where Marks and Spencer now stands. The church was big enough to hold 200 people and the census of 1851 states that there was a morning congregation of 60, an evening one of 92 and a Sunday School of 50. In 1874 and 1884, the chapel was extended and was able to hold 330.
The last service there was held on Mothering Sunday, 28th March 1976 as the building had become beyond repair and it had been decided to build a new Methodist church.
The foundation stone for the new church (in its current location) was laid in September 1979 and the church was opened and dedicated on September 6th 1980.
The latest transformation of the Methodist Church in Alton took place in 2010, when following a one million pound refurbishment the church was re-dedicated on Advent Sunday that year.
We are proud of our history and our heritage and seek to build upon it as we look to the future and, as we have always done, offer a welcome to all who find their way to Alton Methodist Church.