Time to Step Up to Save and Preserve St Just Chapel

Posted on: 27th March 2024

No matter where you are in Cornwall, it is time to step up to save and preserve St Just Chapel. If you know straight away, without reading further that you want to give then, this is the donation page: Donate to save St Just Chapel

St Just Methodist Chapel

St Just Methodist Chapel

An urgent and passionate plea has been issued by St Just Miners’ Chapel, a local charity dedicated to benefiting the local area and the lives of its residents as they launch a crucial fundraising campaign to save the much loved St Just Wesleyan Methodist Chapel, a Grade II* listed building and adjoining community hall facing the threat of closure with its owners, the Trustees for Methodist Church Purposes, confirming it will be sold this year.

Built for the benefit of the local tin and copper mining families in 1833, the Chapel has served as a cornerstone of the St Just community for almost 200 years, offering a spiritual space for celebration and remembrance and, having been described as the ‘globe of the west’, providing a cultural hub for music, song, education, theatre and worship. The adjoining hall and kitchen is a regular meeting point for local community groups. Combined they are considered an ‘Asset with Community Value’ having recently been awarded this formal status by Cornwall Council.

Welcoming audiences near and far, the Chapel stands as a testament to the area’s rich history and heritage. A rare example of important architectural and historic features, the Chapel is an integral part of what can arguably be described as one of the most visually powerful post-industrial rural and coastal landscapes in Cornwall.

However, with a dwindling Methodist congregation and rising maintenance costs, the Chapel’s future hangs in the balance. The pending sale raises concerns about future preservation of a building that is on Heritage England’s ‘Heritage at Risk Register’ and whether or not the doors will be kept open for future cultural and community use.

“This appeal is now more necessary than ever. If the Charity can afford to buy the Chapel then we can get on with our plans to find funding for vital repairs and conservation work that this incredible space so urgently needs. If we can care for the building then we can keep the doors open, if the doors are open then the space can continue and grow as an inspirational home for arts, performance and community, welcoming people looking to discover, contribute to and connect with our local heritage and culture.” Ian Marsh, Chair of St Just Miners Chapel Charity

St Just Miners’ Chapel’s charity has set an initial goal of raising £250,000 by the end of 2024. Reaching this funding target will take both the assistance of grant funding organisations and generous donations.

This target will ensure that the charity can purchase the Chapel and secure its immediate future so that the doors not only stay open but bring it one step closer to unlocking wider potential to serve the community and bring benefit to St Just in innovative ways, including:

  • Connecting communities together by providing a welcoming space for different people all under one roof.
  • Opening the doors on new ideas, with local need and environmental thinking at the core of the building’s purpose and renewed future.
  • Designing educational activities to capture the interest of and involvement from wider audiences.
  • Programming theatre and music performances that tell an authentic story of local identity and cultural heritage.

The Charity is calling on the community and its supporters, to join them in their determination to keep the Chapel for the community, contributing in any way they can:

  • Make a donation: Every contribution, big or small, brings the Chapel closer to being saved. Donate via the Chapel’s website and social channels.
  • Spread the word: Share the campaign with your friends, family, and networks. Let’s see how far the power of digital action and word of mouth can take us.
  • Volunteer your time: Lend a helping hand with fundraising events or activities.
  • Share your ideas: Your comments are as valuable as your donations in helping to secure the future of the Chapel. Tell us how you think the Chapel can play a vital role in life in the area?

“Our hope and our prayer is that the Miners Chapel Charity can ensure that the great legacy of local Methodism will not be consigned to history and that our emphasis on social justice for all and practical service in the community, will be the basis going forward for the magnificent local asset that our Chapel building has always been, and we believe should continue to be.” John Anderson, local congregation member

“I have attended numerous performances in the chapel and sung there many times in drama productions, community celebrations and commemorations. It is a wonderful building holding almost two centuries of memories for the people of St Just. The Chapel is altogether a great resource for the town and a valuable asset for us all.” Chris Hill, nearby resident

“The Chapel is not only of considerable local significance but is also a national treasure” Eric Berry, Cornwall Heritage Expert

“I rate this chapel in the highest rank of all Cornish Methodist buildings. I rank it so highly precisely because it is in scale and architectural ambition one of the ‘cathedrals’ of Cornish dissent, so important to the county’s cultural history. For the ‘Tin Coast’ it is simply the lodestone, irreplaceable, evocative, deeply moving.  Every effort to secure a viable future will be worthwhile.” Peter Beacham, former Heritage Protection Director for Historic England

With the community’s support, the charity believes they can successfully save the Chapel and ensure it continues to be a welcoming and dedicated venue that is an inspiration for generations to come.

Join the campaign today and help write the next chapter for this iconic piece of St Just’s community and cultural heritage.

Find us on social media or via our website

Charity Number: 1180038

WEBSITE: www.stjustminerschapel.com


Instagram @stjustminerschapel

Facebook /stjustminerschapel