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UK Bethel Chapel, Newtown - October 2015

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History

Bethel Methodist Chapel was the third Calvinist chapel to be built in Newtown, the largest town in the county of Powys, Wales. It was originally constructed in 1810, and was later replaced in 1820. The present chapel was constructed on the site between 1875 and 1876. The Gothic style building, with its gable entry plan and flanking turrets, was designed by Richard Owens of Liverpool who was a distinguished architect at that time. The entire construction cost just over £2,300; most of this went towards the front elevation which is squared in masonry and sandstone dressings, the two buttresses to the main gable which at one time featured two individual spirelets, a large central wooden door and the slate roof tiles. The remainder of the building was constructed out of an inexpensive yellow brick. It is estimated that the former chapel once seated approximately 450 people.

Although the former chapel was sold back in 2008/2009, it has since fallen into a bad state of repair. Initial plans expected to redevelop the site into residential accommodation or offices, but no such work was ever initiated. Internal water damage has caused a number of the wooden floorboards to disintegrate throughout the building, and a section of the upper balcony has collapsed under its own weight since a number of slates have fallen off the roof causing the roof above to decay rapidly.

Our Version of Events

With the Newport Transporter conquered, it was time to move on. However, owing to various people’s work commitments and other things, rather than heading further south we decided to head up through Wales instead. It had been a while since we’d all been there and there was plenty of cracking scenery to take in, so it seemed like a good idea. With plenty of driving to do before we reached the north east once again though, we decided to take a pit stop in the small town of Newtown because we’d heard that there was a pleasant little abandoned chapel there. As it turned out, there was indeed an abandoned chapel there.

Access was pretty straightforward, which was a little disappointing after the challenge we had earlier the previous evening to get on the bridge, but we carried on and decided to take a look anyway. The chapel was smaller inside than it looks from the outside, and aside from the main navel there are only a couple of other empty rooms. The main body of the chapel itself still retains most of the classic features; namely its pews, the stained glass windows, an altar and the upper balcony, so they certainly made up for the disappointing overall size. We spent around twenty minutes there before we decided to crack on and make a move. Onwards and upwards was our main intention that day.

Explored with Ford Mayhem, Meek-Kune-Do, The Hurricane, Box and Husky.

1: Bethel Chapel

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2: Stained Glass up the Staircase

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3: The Upper Balcony

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4: Looking Down at Bethel Chapel's Navel

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5: Trying to get the Roof in too

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6: Intact Stained Glass

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7: Heading Downstairs

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8: The Backrooms

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9: The Kitchen

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10: Even More Stained Glass

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11: Standing at the Altar

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12: Rotten Floorboards

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13: Rows of Pews

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14: Front Entrance Window

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15: The Old Wooden Door

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16: Bethel Chapel External Shot

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Liking that quite a lot mate despite being so small. Have to agree on walk ins being boring, part of the fun is the challenge!

:comp:

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Like the look of that a lot!! Not so sure on the colour of the wall... that decorator needs the sack :thumb

Wish more churches had the glass as intact as this place :D

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Liking that quite a lot mate despite being so small. Have to agree on walk ins being boring, part of the fun is the challenge!

:comp:

Yeah, I prefer the challenge to get into these places, but this was quite a pleasant pit stop on our way through Wales. Not often you find so much intact stained glass in one place.

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Like the look of that a lot!! Not so sure on the colour of the wall... that decorator needs the sack :thumb

Wish more churches had the glass as intact as this place :D

Thanks mate. It's a bit small, but the navel was awesome. I agree with you on the overall decor in the place :D Tragic.

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Good stuff mate I like # 11 :D we was gonna go here a couple months back whilst we was over that way but sacked it off, wish I didnt now :(

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Good stuff mate I like # 11 :D we was gonna go here a couple months back whilst we was over that way but sacked it off, wish I didnt now :(

Thanks man.

Haha, we were the same, but decided to have a quick look anyway while we were stretching our legs.

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