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New chapter for Hope Baptist Church

Monday, 26 June 2023

Hope Baptist Church in Hebden Bridge is inviting the local community to join members in a service on the 30th July that marks a handover of its activities to a new team. This transition is the start in a new chapter in the life of a church that was founded in the town in 1777.

Restoration of 1857 Chapel

Over the last fifteen years, Hope Chapel, which was built in 1857 on what was then the turnpike road through an area of new development in Hebden Bridge, has been transformed from a building that was on the 'at risk' register to what has become a vibrant community hub. Over £1.3m has been raised to restore the listed building and recover from three major floods.

Community space

The building is now used throughout the week by a wide range of community groups and the chapel space hosts a variety of music and spoken word events. Equipped with a high-quality sound system to enhance the natural acoustics, it is the largest venue of its kind in Hebden Bridge.

A Church for all faiths

'Hope' has been a working church, holding Christian acts of worship and reflections on Sundays and mid-week. The small group of members is proud to have created an inclusive sanctuary space that is open to people of all faiths and none. However, they have recognised that, as the place has become busier, they lack the resources needed to develop the venue and the ministry further.

A new Team of Trustees

Working in partnership with the Yorkshire Baptist Association, a new team of trustees and support workers will take over strategic planning and day-to-day operation of the church and its property, exploring new ways of providing a Christian church that meets the spiritual needs of people in Hebden Bridge. The church is also working closely with Hebden Bridge Town Hall, Hebden Royd Town Council and Calderdale Music to develop further use of the chapel buildings in consultation with and for the benefit of the local community.

Service of Thanksgiving

The service of thanksgiving, which will be held at Hope Chapel at 3.00pm on Sunday 30th July, provides an opportunity to recognise the work of the current church members and for the new team to acknowledge how this provides a foundation on which they can build.