Friday, 9 March 2018

Settles historic churches walk - 8 March 2018

The Yorkshire Historic Churches Trust and the Yorkshire Dales Millennium Trust organised a walk around Settle's Historic Churches for 8 March 2018.

The group were to visit 7 churches and I had been invited to show people St John's Methodist Church as they walked round. 

20 minutes had been allocated at each church but that really meant about 10 minutes of talk by the time people had assembled.

First was Giggleswick School Chapel.

Barbara Gent, archivist at Giggleswick School, gave the background to details that I would not otherwise have noticed. Look at the lovely mosaic domed ceiling.  The building of the chapel started in 1897.

1. Organ: the organ was made by Henry Willis & Sons, a leading organ makers at the time. It was rebuilt in 2005 by GO-Organ Builders Ltd

The chapel was built at the time of Art Nouveau when artists were using shapes in nature to inspire their drawing.
2. Angels round the base of the dome have their arms raised.
3. Above them is the sky, with clouds and birds, then with  cherubims,  and at the top is the sun.
4. There is a big area of inverted triangle called pendentes. Because it is a square building, pillars support the roof and this triangle area is available for decoration
5. This type of decoration under the arches is sgraffito. Sgraffito is defined as 'decoration by cutting away parts of a surface layer to expose a different colored ground'.
6. The windows have figures to inspire the students. The man at the top centre of the window is Edward VI. He gave the school the charter. (Even though he closed down a lot of other schools)
7. Below him, but off the picture is the headmaster who developed the school
8. Bottom left is Walter Morrison, of Malham Tarn (who donated the resources for the chapel)
9. On top of the pillars are stone carving (?? well stonework)
10. The original lamps/candelabra had looked something like this. Then at some period they were replaced with strip fluorescent tubes lighting. Then in the 1980s much money had been spent on making them more like the original.

Carved woodwork

 These leaves could be Wood Crane's-bill

Edward 6th and Victoria look down on us.
 We walked down to Giggleswick Church in the village, and met Revd Hilary Young.  She told us about the history, and about the new door at the back of the church

I gave the church another of my "Mosses of Giggleswick churchyard booklets", and tried to interest them in the mosses.. but time was short and there was not time to visit all the churchyard.

I remembered the mosses workshopI had led the  at Giggleswick Church in 2011 and 2013

22 people had attended that workshop in 2013

I also remember the Lichens Day when Prof Mark Seaward nad Nigel Mussett  brought the Institute of Biology to Giggleswick Church in 2009 


We followed Tems Beck as far as the playing fields. I returned for my car and the the group walked on to Settle to the Catholic Church.

I went to the Methodist Church. I put out a display of the Rainforest Cards, (Thank you to those who bought £17 of cards)  and some Green Christian leaflets.

History of New Church: 

We moved across the road to our new church just over two years ago in December 2015, It must be the fifth Methodist Church building that has been built in Settle: Our old church was demolished in 2016 to be replaced by 4 houses (which went a long was towards paying for the new church building).  I'll talk more about the history of the Settle Circuit and of John Wesley lower down 

inside St John's Church Settle

History of previous Methodist  churches in Settle
So the history of our new church is rather short: We moved in in December 2015 The Church hall was built in 1939 as the Sunday School, of the church across the road which was built in 1893, and has been very useful and functional ever since. Rather than tell the visiting group the history of the old church building (1893-2015 - and it was after all the third Methodist Church built in Settle - the Primitive Methodist (Now Christian Fellowship on Skipton Road) was opened in 1909 to replace their former building being the fourth) I decided to concentrate more on the start of the Settle Methodist circuit. There is a booklet by Henry Longbottom which tells the history of that church.

Rather I looked into the history of Methodism in our area. I reread the booklet by Peter McCabe "John Wesley and the Settle   Circuit - A Celebration of 300 Years." written in 2003, from where much of the following info is derived.

The revivals that eventually became the Methodist Church were brought to people in our area by people other than John Wesley.  Most importantly and firstly by Lawrence Batty of Newby Cote (off the back road from Clapham to Ingleton), who went to attend Cambridge Universty in 1737 and returned in 1739. And on returning he and in due course his two  brothers brought the ideas, and wrote hymns. Lawrence persuaded Delamotte to come and preach, and Delamotte persuaded Benjamin Ingham. (Ingham had been in the Holy Club with Wesley (see below) at Oxford and had accompanied Wesley to Georgia. Ingham returned to our area in 1743 and preached at Austwick, Newby and Settle. Thus Methodism was becoming established in this area from 1743.  The first society was formed at the Batty home in 1748 at Newby Cote. In 1757  a chapel was built on Newby Moor:- Thinoaks chapel and a thousand people attended the afternoon service. It is now used as a barn at Oaklands Farm. At the same time a chapel was being built at Burton in Lonsdale that was opened in August later that year, 20 years after Lawrence had set out for Cambridge.

Preaching was known at Settle in 1760 and by 1771 a room was being rented for preaching in kirkgate,  See more of Settle at Proceedings of the Wesley Hostorical Society vol XL June 1975 page 35-37

To put things in context, here are some dates of John Wesley, the founder of a movement:  Wesley did eventually come to Settle 3 times, in 1764, in 1977 and in 1784 (when he was 81)
John Wesley: born 1703, saved from a fire in 1709, went to Oxford University 1720, ordained a deacon in the Anglican church 1725,  led Holy Club at Oxford in 1729 (which had been started by his brother Charles). They were being called Methodists by 1734.
In 1735 he sailed to Georgia then a British colony in the Americas. He returned in 1738. On 24 May 1738 he went to a meeting at a Moravian church and "felt his heart strangely warmed".  In 1730 he began preaching in the outdoors on the advice of George Whitfield.  From this time till his death at 88 in 1791, he travelled 100s of 1000s of miles and preached 40,000 sermons. He preached in the Settle area only three times: 1764 He preached at Burton in Lonsdale (then called Black Burton) then in the afternoon at Long Preston and arrived at Skipton in the evening. He preached in 1977 and in 1784 (when he was 81)

Across the road was welcome lunch provided by Holy Ascention, the Parish Church.

We walked past the Folly, up to Zion. This has been closed for two years now. It closed in its 199th year. (We benefit at St Johns as several people from Zion now come to St Johns)  It is recently been bought / donated to North Craven Buildings Trust. Ann Read showed us round.
Including the hall at the back where we used to have the Churches Together Breakfast after the Easter morning sunrise service

Finally we walked across to Settle Friends Meeting House where we heard about the work of the Quakers. - an excellent final talk.

thank you to Judy Rogers and Sarah or the YDMT who organised the trip and to all the people who spoke to us.

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