METHODISM IN WEST CAMEL
Although Methodism in West Camel goes back to the 19th century or even
earlier, the present church was built in 1908 beside what was then a narrow
country lane (see picture below right). This has now become the busy A303
London to Exeter trunk road. West Camel Methodists had previously worshipped
in an "upper room" above a carpenter's shop in Keep Street (right). The
thatched roof leaked when it rained, and when the congregation was large
(it seated 80) props had to be placed beneath the floor to support it!
The necessity for a new church became increaingly apparent, but lack of
funds prevented this dream from becoming a reality for many years. It
was when Mr and Mrs A E Clothier came to reside at Vale Farm and offered
a plot of land for a new church that plans really got under way, and an
estimate of £497.50 from Messrs. Chapman and Co., Builders of Yeovil was
accepted. On June 14th 1908 the stone-laying ceremony took place, and
new premises were officially opened on 24th September 1908. In 1974, an
extension, including kitchen and toilets, was added, and in 1998, to coincide
with the 90th anniversary celebrations, extensive alterations were undertaken.
This involved reversing the interior layout of the chapel, constructing
a new entrance, and renovating the church hall.
In September 2005 we removed the wooden pews and replaced them with comfortable
wooden chairs. This not only makes our chapel more "use-friendly"
but also more flexible.
SMALL, BUT FRIENDLY
Today, we are small, but friendly church, and visitors always receive
a warm welcome. Because of our geographical location beside the busy A303,
some activities take place in the village hall known as the Davis
Hall. These are run jointly with All Saints Church of England, with which
we have a close working relationship through West Camel Churches Together.
West Camel Methodist Church belongs to the Somerset Mendip Methodist Circuit,
a group of twenty-six churches. See links page
to access the Circuit website.