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Neville Malkin's "Grand Tour" of the Potteries

buildings of Tunstall and the surrounding area
 


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No 35 -  St. James's Church, Newchapel


The original New Chapel

'New Chapel.' West view showing a chapel built in the classic style of architecture. The nave has four round-headed windows, there is a west entrance, and a bell turret of pyramidal design.
Artist: Thomas Peploe Wood.
1838

[Reproduced by permission of the
Trustees of the William Salt Library, Stafford]

 

"Newchapel is situated in an elevated position right at the northern end of the Potteries about three miles north of Tunstall. It was originally part of the enormous ecclesiastical parish of Wolstanton and included the townships of Thursfield, Chell and Wedgwood and parts of Stadmoreslow and Brerehurst. In 1666 there were approximately 35 households recorded in the Hearth Tax for these places.

The building of a new chapel here early in the 17th century to serve the local population probably gave the place its name and it became a separate ecclesiastical parish in 1715. In 1766, the church of St James was rebuilt. It was again rebuilt in brick in 1878 - 1880 by the architectural firm of T Lewis and Son. The cost of the building was 2,675."

Staffordshire Past Track

 

St. James, Newchapel
St. James, Newchapel
pen drawing by Neville Malkin - April 1976
   


St. James, Newchapel
St. James, Newchapel
photo: May 2009

 

"This towerless and sizeable red brick building, standing in spacious and exposed grounds on top of a ridge on the northern boundary of the City, is the church of St. James at Newchapel. It was built in 1878-80 from a design by a local firm, T. Lewis and Son, and, although of little architectural importance, is still worthy of mention because of the long association this site has with the development of the Church in the area.

It appears that the village of Newchapel was originally the townstead of adjoining Thursfield and took its name from the time a chapel was first erected, which is believed to have been during the mid-16th century. It was eventually replaced in the 1760s by another chapel described as a neat brick building with a cupola and bell, well-pewed, with seating for more than 300. Originally the church was founded by some of the principal landowners in the district, which included the families of Bowyer, Sneyd and Bourne. It later became a perpetual curacy by augmentation from Queen Anne's Bounty.

For a great many years, the chapel served a very large area; until the opening of Christ Church, Tunstall in 1832, it was the only place of worship belonging to the Established Church in the Parish of Wolstanton, besides the Mother Church.

Wolstanton Parish was then divided into two parts, north and south; the northern one constituted the Chapelry of Newchapel, and contained eight villages and hamlets: Tunstall, Chell, Oldcott, Ranscliff, Brieryhurst, Stadmerslow, Thursfield and Wedgwood.

St. James's cemetery is probably best known as the burial place of James Brindley, the famous engineer and canal builder, who lived at nearby Turnhurst Hall. A free grammar school for the education of 18 poor boys was founded in Newchapel in the early 1700's by Dr. Robert Hulme, of Sandbach, who left, in his will of 1714, an estate in Odd Rode for its support."


Neville Malkin 7th April 1976

 

 

It was not until 1914 that the chancel was added
It was not until 1914 that the chancel was added

 

To The Glory of God
this stone was laid by
Robert Heath Esq JP
of Biddulph Grange
the xviiith day of april mcmxiv

[18th April 1914] 

 

 

 

 

 


 


- click for index page on Brindley -

 


 


next: James Brindley's grave
previous: Victoria Hall, Kidsgrove
contents: index of buildings of Tunstall and surrounding area


 

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