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About Us

The History

The Malton Weslyan Methodist Church Circuit was formed in 1794, the local chapel being situated in Old Maltongate, from which place John Wesley preached. This and two dwelling houses adjoining were bartered to Earl Fitzwilliam for the ground on which the present chapel stands. The difference in area of 223 square yards, valued at 20/- per square yard, was given by the Earl and heads the subscription list towards the cost of this building in 1811.

Built at the same time were two minsters houses, one at each side of the chapel and these can still be quite clearly seen.

When the chapel opened worship was by candle light and one William Smith was paid one and a half guineas per year for lighting them.

Up to 1850 there was a paid choir assisted by a string and reed band but this gave way to an organ in 1851 which in itself was replaced by a new instrument in 1882.

The body of the chapel was re-seated and the staircases enclosed in 1866 which cost £600. Prior to this the sides had benches without backs and along the walls were pegs upon which coats etc. were hung.

1869 saw the building of the second floor rooms at the rear and both day and Sunday schools shared them.

New windows were installed shortly after the turn of the century along with a new heating system, then little is recorded as having taken place until about 1950 when, as the gallery was no longer in use, the pulpit was lowered, making it necessary to remove the ornate choir stalls which were stepped each side of the pulpit to gallery height.

At this time the Primitive and Weslyan congregations came together in the building.

In an effort to try to eliminate down draught a Perspex canopy was fitted in 1970/71 effectively closing off the gallery.

The “New” Building

In 1965 and again in 1993/94 attempts were made to sell the building, which was considered too large for the needs of the congregation.

In 1994, feeling that we were being led by the Spirit to maintain a witness in the town centre the decision was made to take the building off the market and seek to redevelop the premises to make them more suitable for present day requirements. At that stage the building was upgraded to a Grade II* (star) listing as it was considered by English Heritage to be a good example of an early Methodist Chapel of its type, with a high proportion of original or early fittings. This meant the scheme which was developed had to meet with the approval of English Heritage whilst at the same time meeting our, sometimes, conflicting aims. The gallery was restored and four rows of pews removed in order to create the Fellowship Area whilst the old Sunday School buildings at the rear were totally demolished and replaced by a single story extension. The work went out to tender in May of 1998 and we handed the building over to the contractors in October of that year. The “new” building was re-opened on Saturday 21st August 1999 by Rev. Stuart Burgess the President of the Methodist Conference.

Our original estimate of the cost was £200,000 but by the time we had finished the scheme cost some £365,000. Thanks to enthusiastic fundraising this was all found within twelve months of the re-opening.

The Future

Download a copy of our Mission Statement – Click Here

Our intention was always to open the building up to the local community and that we feel we have achieved by making the building more welcoming and user friendly.

Rev. Tanya, Pat Jones and Ted Skelton share thoughts at the Pastoral Lunch 2015.

Rev. Tanya, Pat Jones and Ted Skelton share thoughts at the Pastoral Lunch 2015.

Our mission statement aim is to see the building as a door through which people can come and one through which the Gospel of Jesus Christ can be heard. This will always be an aim which we are working on but we feel some progress is being made. To further that aim we now employ a lay-worker to assist our Minister, in particular with the work among young families and children.

We continue to seek new ways of reaching out and you will always be able to see details of new ventures on the notice boards around our Fellowship Area.

If you are a visitor to the town we hope you will enjoy a visit to the Church on Saville Street. If you live locally we look forward to welcoming you at one of our services.

Read John Dodsworth’s early history of Saville Street Church below – use up and down arrows in the grey bar to navigate