SHROPSHIRE'S NONCONFORMIST CHAPELS

The Catholic and Apostolic Church, West Castle Street, Bridgnorth
The Catholic and Apostolic Church, West Castle Street, Bridgnorth
The Catholic and Apostolic Church in Bridgnorth was built in 1835. In the 1851 Religious Census it described itself as "One Holy Catholic and Apostolic Church". The building had seating for 200 worshippers, and at their morning service on 30th March 1851 there were 103 worshippers, in the afternoon 63 & in the evening 124. The "Angel" of the Church, John Henry Cooper, stated on the census form "We protest against being classed under any sectarian name." In Bagshaw's Directory of Shropshire of 1851 there is an interesting description of the church: The church "is a commodious edifice, built of freestone in the year 1835. The building has Gothic windows, ornamented with stained glass. The interior has a beautiful appearance; the altar is of stone, and there are richly carved oak stalls and desks for the priests. The seats are all free. The congregation is under the rule and govenement of the apostles, being in charge of an angel, who, with priests, assisted by deacons, fulfil their several duties clothed in appropriate vestments." In 1889 they advertised their organ for sale as they intended to buy a bigger one. By the late 1940s the church had closed due to a decline in membership. Plans were then drawn up by the local council to convert the building into a public hall, called "Castle Hall", and its appearance was much altered. There is a photograph of the church taken in 1952, shortly after it closed, which was published in the Shropshire Star on 13 December 2011. When a photograph of the building as it was, is available it will be reproduced here. In the meantime, its location is shown on old Ordnance Survey maps.
Grid ref: SO 716929


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