WATFORD METHODIST CIRCUIT
|Title:||WATFORD METHODIST CIRCUIT|
|Held by:||Hertfordshire Archives and Local Studies, not available at The National Archives|
Watford Primitive Methodist Circuit
Watford Primitive Methodists were worshipping in a room in Hedges Yard, High Street by 1840. A chapel was in use in Carey Place, Watford by 1865 [see NM7J]. The circuit also included chapels at Croxley Green [see NM7M], Letchmore Heath [see NM7P], Bushey [see NM7N], Redbourn [see NM5G] and St Albans. In 1877 the chapels at Redbourn and St Albans formed themselves into a separate Primitive Methodist circuit. For later details concerning chapels in these two places see NM5. By 1893 the Watford circuit included the chapels at St Albans Road and Queen's Road Watford, Bushey Heath, Croxley Green, Aldenham and Chorleywood. A further church in Whippendell Road, Watford was opened in 1903, [see NM7I-P]. For a short period from 1897 this circuit also included Northwood and Ruislip, Middlesex. In 1901 a separate Harrow Mission was formed and the Northwood and Ruislip churches were removed from the Watford plan.
On the union of the Methodist churches in 1933 the Primitive churches were constituted a separate circuit named Watford (No 2). Not until 1947 were the former Primitive and Wesleyan (Watford No 1 circuit) churches united as one circuit.
Watford Wesleyan Methodist Circuit
A Wesleyan Society was first formed in Watford in 1808. Services were held in the Market Place then later in a room in Hedges Yard, High Street. In 1813 Watford formed part of the Luton Circuit. Records of this Circuit are now held by Bedfordshire Record Office, County Hall, Bedford MK42 9AP. A chapel was erected in Water Lane in 1814 and a second chapel opened in 1838 in Farthing Lane. By this date Watford was included in the St Albans Circuit [see NM5]. The Farthing Lane chapel was closed in 1868 on the opening of the chapel in Queen's Road [see NM7A].
A separate Watford circuit was formed in 1872 and as well as Watford and Rickmansworth also included the societies at Pinner, Eastcote and Harefield in Middlesex transferred from the Uxbridge circuit. In 1904 this circuit was amalgamated with the Hemel Hempstead circuit to include Watford (churches now existed in Queen's Road, Vicarage Road and St Albans Road, Watford and Villiers Road, New Bushey), Rickmansworth, Harefield, Pinner, Eastcote, Heronsgate, Hemel Hempstead, Nash Mills, Two Waters, Berkhamsted, Kings Langley and Abbotts Langley. The section including Heronsgate, Northwood, Eastcote, Pinner, Harefield and Rickmansworth was transferred to the Harrow circuit in 1922.
On the union of the Methodist churches in 1933 the Watford Wesleyan churches remained as a separate circuit known as Watford (No 1) consisting of Queen's Road, Vicarage Road and Harebreaks (formerly known as St Albans Road) Watford, Bushey and Oxhey (formerly Villiers Road, New Bushey), Hemel Hempstead, Nash Mills, Two Waters, Berkhamsted, Cupid Green, Kings Langley and Abbotts Langley. The Watford Primitive churches St Albans Road and Whippendell Road, Watford, Bushey Heath, Croxley Green, Aldenham and Chorleywood forming Watford (No 2) circuit. Not until 1947 were the two circuits amalgamated, with the addition of Rickmansworth and Harefield from the Harrow circuit to form a new Watford circuit.
The Hemel Hempstead and Berkhamsted circuit was formed in 1957 and the following chapels from the Watford circuit were transferred to it: Hemel Hempstead (Marlowes and Wesley), Two Waters, Boxmoor (opened 1953) and Nash Mills [see NM3].
The church at Springwell Avenue, Mill End, Rickmansworth was transferred to the Watford circuit from Chalfont and Chesham in 1958. It was closed in 1964 on the opening of the new church in Berry Lane, Rickmansworth. Harefield was transferred to Uxbridge circuit in 1958. The church at Cupid Green was closed in 1955 and at Chorleywood in 1969. A church at Carpenders Park, Watford in Prestwick Road was opened in 1953 and Queen's Road, Watford closed in 1966.
The Watford circuit now includes the churches at Whippendell Road, Vicarage Road, Harebreaks and Carpenders Park, Watford, Bushey and Oxhey, Bushey Heath, Rickmansworth (Berry Lane and High Street), Croxley Green, Abbotts Langley and Kings Langley.
The Watford circuit now forms part of the London North West District of the Methodist Church
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