Brief History of Cheap Street Church

1831 Mr William Digby arrived in Sherborne from Cornwall and found the Methodist cause ‘most disgusting and repellent’. From then on great things were to be achieved because of his vision and witness.

1824 The Society of Methodists purchased an outhouse in Cheap Street and converted it into a chapel for 200 people.

1842 The church was opened on 12th at a cost of £3490. Gothic in style, four plain walls with a gallery at the back. Access to the church was from Hospital Lane.

1851 Three shops on the Cheap Street frontage were demolished leaving a pathway from the main street to the front of the church.

1862 Side galleries with fine cast iron framework were installed and a new pipe organ.

1872 Land was purchased and a hall built to accommodate the expanding Sunday School. At this point there were 800 names on the school roll with an average attendance of 590.

1884 The west end of the church was enlarged to accommodate the organ, choir and vestry.

1986 The original Sunday School was sold to Sherborne Boys’ School, now known as the Powell Theatre.

1994 The Methodist and United Reformed congregations joined together to form the Cheap Street Church.

1995/6 The area under the church was cleared to accommodate ‘The Rendezvous’,a young people’s venue for advice and leisure.

2002/3 A major refurbishment to make for easier access, remedial work to the exterior stonework and complete redecoration of the interior. Glazed entrance doors, a glass screen between the ‘Welcome area’ and the sanctuary, new lighting, heating, carpeting and seat coverings. These changes have enabled the church to engage with the local community in many different ways and underlined our vision as ‘Servant Church.’

Cheap Street Church