Steep Lane Baptist Church, Sowerby

The Nonconformists here grew from a group who left the Independent Church at Sowerby – Sowerby Congregational Church – on account of the minister's Arian views.

The first chapel was built in 1751, and the school is dated 1751.

It became a Baptist Church in 1779 after the Pastor, Rev John Dracup, adopted Baptist principles.

In April 1803, 9 members went to form a Church at Rishworth.

A new chapel was built in 1820, during the pastorate of Rev Thomas Milnes. A plaque reads:

Peace be within this sacred place
And joy a constant guest
With holy gifts and heavenly grace
Be her attendants blest

This gave the chapel the name Hepzibah Baptist Church.

It accommodated 250 worshippers [1845].

A new school was built during the pastorate of Rev W. E. Goodman [1851-1857].

During the pastorate of Rev William Haigh, a new school [1874] and a new chapel [1875] were built.

The inscription over the entrance reads:


and another:


Levi Haigh was buried here

On 30th April 1986, the roof was declared to be unsafe.

On 25th February 1987, it was agreed to reduce the building to a single storey.

The modified building was opened on 13th/14th May 1989.

Pastors at the Church have included


See Sing, Mr Standeven, Steep Lane Baptist Church, Sowerby: Memorial, Steep Lane Baptist Church, Sowerby: Graveyard, Steep Lane, Manse, Samuel Whiteley and W. Henry Wild

© Malcolm Bull 2023
Revised 16:26 / 28th October 2023 / 6863

Page Ref: ZZ_5

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