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Raunds Baptist Church

The old Baptist Church Baptist Sunday School
The Baptist Church first met in a barn on this site, purchased for £20. The barn was furnished and decorated by collections
and public subscription
and was opened in 1798.

The new building on the same site was erected in 1837 in Rotten Row, with a Sunday School added in 1886.

The building was closed for religious worship in 1948.

Today both church and school are living accomodation.

Baptist Church built in 1837
School added in 1886

Baptists’ Ground - The Baptists have a burial ground on one side of the chapel built in 1837, but in consequence of its proximity to the public street it was closed nearly 60 years ago. There are tablets on the chapel outside, but there is only one tombstone, of a member of the Coles family. James and Kezia Coles who lived in Cherry Orchard Land, had a son who died of consumption when a young man. [extract from a 1932 report]

Extract from the autobiography of Thomas Coleman Clarke

Baptist Choir
My father was a competent vocalist. He was a self-taught, but good, reader of music. The whole of his children had good musical voices. As a young boy I was blessed with a good voice and was often asked to sing little ditties and tunes. My mother brought an hassock for me to stand upon and at the age of ten I was taken into the singing pew at Raunds Baptist Meeting to sing treble, my father at that time being the leader of the singing – the whole of the choir being males. The musical ability of the choir was noted for its good talent – all good readers; it was not uncommon for them to sing a chorus from the Messiah at the close of the evening service. No instrument. All male voices and no instrument.

Wellingborough News, 29th July 1882, transcribed by Kay Collins

A NEW SCHOOLROOM FOR THE BAPTIST CHAPEL—There having been now for many years a Sunday school in connection with the Baptist Chapel, but no schoolroom, a piece of ground adjoining the chapel has recently been purchased and paid for with a view to erect rooms, the estimated cost of which, with other alterations and improvements, is set down at about £200. The committee intend we understand, shortly to make a special effort to raise this amount.

Wellingborough News, 5th August 1882, transcribed by Kay Collins

BAPTIST CHAPEL ANNIVERSARY—Special services in connection with the anniversary of this place of worship were held in the chapel on Tuesday afternoon and evening last, when sermons were preached by Mr. Anderson, of London. The attendance in the afternoon was fair, considering the weather, rain falling heavily before the service. There was, however, a large congregation in the evening, when the weather was more propitious. Collections were made after each service. In the afternoon between the services a public tea was held in the Temperance Hall, when a good number sat down to table. The trays were presided over by Mrs. Lot Arnsby, Mrs. T. Lovell, Mrs. A. Fuller, Mrs. R. Eady, Mrs. Stock, and Miss Beeby, assisted by Mr. R. Eady, Mr. A. Fuller and others. The tea was provided by donations from friends to the cause, and the whole of the proceeds, together with the amount realised by the collections at the services, is to be devoted to the defrayal of the incidental expenses in connection with the chapel.

Wellingborough News, 9th September 1882, transcribed by Kay Collins

RAUNDS BAPTIST CHAPEL— This place of worship is announced by the registrar of the Thrapston district as having been on the 24th ult. duly registered for the solemnizing of marriages therein, according; to Act of Parliament.

Wellingborough News, 7th October 1882, transcribed by Kay Collins

BAPTIST CHAPEL—On Thursday evening last a special service of thanksgiving for the safe ingathering of the harvest was held in this place of worship, and attended by a good congregation.

Wellingborough News, 28th October 1882, transcribed by Kay Collins

BAPTIST CHAPEL BAZAAR—A bazaar in aid of the erection of a new schoolroom for the Baptist Sunday School was opened at the Temperance Hall on Monday. For many years there has been a Sabbath school in connection with this place of worship, but no schoolroom. The number of scholars having increased to about 140, the members and congregation felt there was a great need for a room for their accommodation. In the Spring of the year an opportunity presented itself for the purchase of a plot of ground adjoining the chapel. The piece of ground was at once purchased and paid for, and the ways and means for erecting a new schoolroom were immediately considered. The cost of erecting this building and making some other alterations and improvements which were considered to be necessary was estimated at about £200. In order to meet this as far as possible before embarking in the undertaking it was determined to hold a bazaar in the autumn, and to appeal to the public for their assistance. In furtherance of the object in view, the following gentlemen were elected as a committee of management:—The Pastor (Rev. T. Field), president; Mr. D. White, treasurer; Mr. R. Eady, secretary; and Messrs. Jonas Barritt, John Barritt, B. Elderkin, R. Thompson, F. Smith, F. Spicer, G. Pulpher, A. Fuller, G. Stock, W. Partridge, L. Dickerson, H. Nunley, and W. Knight. An appeal to the sympathy and generosity of friends was at once made by the committee, and was liberally responded to in consignments of useful and fancy goods, as well as donations in money to the ladies' committee hereafter named. The result was seen in the excellent display of articles on view at the Temperance Hall on Monday. The hall was neatly decorated with coloured paper chain-work, and bouquets of foliage and flowers, and the walls also were adorned with the following nicely-wrought mottoes, "Buy the truth and sell it not," "The earth is the Lord's and the fulness thereof," and over the platform, in red dotted letters on a white ground edged with green leaves, "Unity is Strength". The decorations were the work of Miss A. Z. Moore, with the exception of the last-mentioned which was the work of Miss S. H. Lovell. The goods were staged on raised stalls round the hall, and contained the usual assortment of children's and women's under and outer clothing, fancy goods, articles for the toilet, toys, ornaments, pictures, photographs, quilts, shoes, hosiery, cushions, books, and numerous trinkets. The stalls were all well furnished, and many of the goods could not be exhibited at first for want of room. At the time for the opening, when everything was arranged and set in order, and the greengrocers' goods were piled in rows on the platform, and the viands were temptingly displayed on the provision stalls, the hall presented a very beautiful appearance. The opening service commenced at two o'clock, and commenced with singing the hymn, "All hail the power of Jesus' Name." A prayer was then offered by the Pastor. After prayer, the Pastor delivered a short opening address, and at the outset thanked all those present and absent friends who had so liberally contributed to the bazaar. He said liberally for they had got more goods than could be put upon the stalls. They had got the goods, they now wanted to change them into money. The object of the bazaar they all knew was to enable them to build a room for the Sunday School. He acknowledged that the week-day schools did a wonderful work in teaching the children, but he contended that this was not sufficient. The Sunday school was wanted to teach moral and religious truth or the mere teaching of the intellect would be of little advantage. Children, he maintained, must be cared for by the church. The children wanted nurturing with spiritual food, and he urged them, to be zealous and constant in their efforts to do this. It was a great principle both in nature and religion that God did not do what man could do for himself. God did not plough or sow, man could do that. God made the seed to grow. Christ taught the same principle in his miracles at the marriage feast at Cana of Galilee, and at the raising of Lazarus. Christ did not fill the water pots in the one case, or roll away the stone in the other. Each one had a work to do for God in caring for the immortal souls of the children. They must use the means and God would give the increase. Every saved soul ought to increase the number of the saved or his Christianity was rotten at the core. Again urging them to their Christian duty in this matter he declared the bazaar open. The sale at once began in right earnest. The following committee of ladies by whose efforts the articles on the stalls had been got together presided and acted as saleswomen:—First stall, Mrs. Lot Arnsby, Mrs. T. Lovell, and the Misses. S. H. Lovell, C. Pell, E. Beeby, M. Knight and K. Knight; second scholars stall, Miss F. Pulpher, Miss E. Beeby, Miss E. Knight, Miss S. H. Moore, and Miss A. Barritt; third stall, Mrs. G. Pulpher, Mrs. G. Finding, Mrs. G. Beeby and Mrs. F. Spicer; fourth stall, Mrs. F. Sivers, Mrs. F. Smith, Mrs. Barritt, Mrs. B. Elderkin, Miss Smith and Miss A Z. Moore; Fifth stall, Mrs. G. Rains, Miss E Bailey, Miss S. H. Annis, Miss E. Robinson, Miss M. J. Rands, Miss S. J. Meadows, and Miss A. Groom; refreshment staff, Mrs. A. Fuller, Miss Cattermole, Miss Jane Peacock, and Miss Annie Peacock assisted by Mr. A. Fuller; greengrocer's stall, Messrs. T. Haynes, G. Rains, R. Thompson and W. White. Besides these stalls there were other adjuncts for increasing the revenue. There was the inevitable bran-pie kept by the Misses A. Spicer and M. Moore; the weighing machine attended to by Mr. B. Elderkin; the galvanizing machine by Mr. Yates; and a show exhibiting various scenes in the wheel of life Mr. J. Barritt; toll keeper Messrs. W. Partridge, W. Knight, J. Peacock, B. Lovell, (Ringstead) R. Eady and D. White. Amongst other things given we noticed a pair of live pigeons, two pairs of live rabbits, (one pair given by Mr. Yates), 33 pictures and scripture texts and mottoes, including three views of Raunds church framed and given by Mr. Fred. Smith, and a 30 round ladder given by Mr. Silas Moore. There was not a large attendance in the early part of the afternoon, but the day being fine the company increased later on, so that in the evening the Hall was crowded almost to the close. The bazaar was again opened on Tuesday afternoon and evening, but the weather was so stormy and inclement that little was done until the evening, when there was a good company present. We must not forget the names of Mrs. W. White, Mrs. D. White, and Mrs. Harris, who rendered efficient service in the ante-room. Good sales were effected on both days, and the ladies' and gentlemen's committees are both to be congratulated on the results. The total sum realized amounted to between £70 and £90, including a donation from Hon C. E. Spencer, M.P. A quantity of goods still remain on hand to be disposed of at a future time.

Wellingborough News, 6th January 1883, transcribed by Kay Collins

CHRISTMAS WITH THE BAPTISTS—On Wednesday afternoon, the Baptist friends held a public tea in the Chapel and the attendance was so large as to necessitate two sittings. In the evening an entertainment consisting of a selection of anthems dialogues, and recitations, was given by the choir to a good audience, the pastor, Mr. T. Fields, presiding. The following programme of recitations and dialogues were rendered by the Sunday scholars, teachers, and others. First, a recitation was given by Annie Pentelow, followed by one from Mrs Bertha, entitled "Little sparrows." Then came a dialogue between Miss Pollard and a lad, on "Early rising." After this three recitations were given, "I dare not," by G. Pollard, ''Good rules," by another lad, and "Nellie's prayer," by Miss Barritt. The Misses Knight, Robinson, and Peacock then favoured the audience with a dialogue on "Slavery," the choir finishing it with the anthem "Sound the loud timbrel;" a little girl named Amy Beeby hen gave two recitations sweetly, "Freddy and the cherries," and "The sparrows," which were much applauded. Three other recitations followed, "Kindness wins," Miss Pollard; "The post choice," Miss S. M. Beeby; "The hive of bees," Miss M. Peacock. A dialogue on ''Charity,'' was then given by Miss Annie Pentelow, Miss Beeby and another; and two more recitations were given, "I dare," by G. Pollard, and "Bringing children to Jesus" by Miss White. The recitative part of the programme was relieved at intervals by a capital selection of sacred anthems which, were well sung by the choir, and made an agreeable and effective change; Mr. G. Pulpher presided at the organ. A dialogue a "Self esteem," which was capitally given by the Misses Knight, Robinson, and Peacock finished the programme, and after a collection was made a behalf of the choir, which realized £1 7s. 3½d. A vote of thanks on the motion of Mr. Elderkin, was accorded to the pastor, Mr. Fields, and the performers, and the meeting closed with the Doxology.

Wellingborough News, 29th August 1890, transcribed by Kay Collins

BAPTIST MEETING-HOUSE—The monthly tea meeting in connection with the renovation of the above place of worship was held in the schoolroom on Monday last, 25th inst., the trays for which were kindly given by Mrs. Hills. Among those present were several Church of England and Wesleyan friends. After the tea a hearty vote of thanks was accorded to Mrs. Hills by acclamation for her great kindness in giving the tea, and also to Pastor C. H. Spurgeon for his generous gift of £15 in liquidation of the debt incurred by the renovation of their meeting-house. This brought one of the most successful monthly tea meetings yet held to a close.

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