Buckhurst Hill History

History of Buckhurst Hill's Churches

St John the Baptist

St John the Baptist is the parish Church of Buckhurst Hill. This Anglican Church was built in 1837 as a chapel of Ease.  The following year Buckhurst Hill was constituted a separate ecclesiastical district. At this time the area was part of the ancient parish of Chigwell. Buckhurst Hill did not become a separate parish until 1867.

The Church has a grave yard attached.  To see the memorials inside the church see Inside St Johns

Also in the Parish of St John's are the Anglican Churches of St Stephen's and St Elisabeth's.


St Stephen’s & St Elisabeth's Churches

St Stephen's (left)is a small Chapel situated on Albert Road at the junction of Lower Queens Road. This mission church  was built as a chapel of ease to St. John's in 1876. 
The mission church of St Elisabeth's (right) was opened in 1938.


In Palmerston Road there are two non conformists’ churches, Buckhurst Hill Baptist Church and St James United Reformed Church.

Buckhurst Hill Baptist Church

Buckhurst Hill Baptist Church is built on the junction of Palmerston Road and Westbury Lane.

The Queen's Road Baptist Church, Buckhurst Hill, was formed about 1861, when the Revd. H. Cousens became minister. In 1866 a church was built at a cost of £1,200, with accommodation for 250.  In 1869 there were 37 members. Cousens remained until 1885, and was succeeded by the Revd. E. G. Ince, who came from Australia.  Soon after 1890 the church was closed. It later became known as Buckhurst Hill Hall and was used for public meetings and entertainments. It was enlarged in 1912.  It is now used as a branch of the County Library. It is a small red-brick building.


© 2009                        

 Photograph provided by D Lalonde




Soon after the closing of the Queen's Road Baptist Church meetings were resumed by some of the members under the leadership of Noah Heath. They hired Rigg's Retreat, Princes Road, from 1894 to 1897 and in 1899 founded a church, with the Revd. J. R. Cox as minister. In 1902 an iron building was erected in Princes Road. The church lost some members soon after this to the Palmerston Road Baptist Church (see below).  In 1906 Cox was succeeded by his son F. A. Cox and in 1910 there were 55 members, 70 children in the Sunday school, and 7 teachers.  By 1930 there were only 25 members, 45 children, and 3 teachers.  From 1924 to about 1933 F. A. Cox was again minister, but the church appears to have closed about 1934. It stood near the west end of Princes Road on the north side. 

The Baptist church, Palmerston Road, Buckhurst Hill, was founded in 1900, when the iron building that had been the original King's Place Congregational Church was bought by the London Baptist Association.  Many early adherents came from the Princes Road Baptist Church. A Baptist church was formally constituted in 1909, taking over the brick building of the King's Place Congregational Church, which had closed in 1906.  By 1930 there were 56 members, 45 Sunday school pupils, and 13 teachers.  In 1951 there were 74 members, 87 pupils, and 16 teachers.  For most of its history the church has supported a minister.

'Chigwell: Protestant nonconformity', A History of the County of Essex: Volume 4: Ongar Hundred (1956), pp. 35-37.

http://www.british-history.ac.uk/report.aspx?compid=15542. Date accessed: 21 May 2008.

St James' Church

St James United Reformed Church is built on Palmerston Road set back behind the Tower of the previous Church


The tower still remains and is now attached to a block of flats on the main road


You can walk through the tower archway and out into the car park.  From inside you can view the 'Tree of Life' window and from behind the gargoyle that is over the doorway at the rear.


Post card image of St James' Church


Printer: unknown

Sender: E A Lawson

Postage Date: 6th May 1912



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