Interesting Information from the First Church Membership Book
The earliest baptismal date is noted of Lydia Lovett of Bridge Street on 5 February 1860.
The first baptisms in the present chapel buildings, built in 1876 took place in October 1877, persons named Barnes and Stemson, who lived in Catsick Road and Sileby Road respectively.
The first person named in the book is John Frier, who died in the year 1888, and four others which probably should be noted. Wm Black and Thomas Lockwood; no date is given for their deaths. George Cross who left for York and Joseph Smith who died in 1891. No baptism date is noted of these first five, but it is evident that from that time details are given of names and baptismal dates.
Between the years 1877 and 1889 the numbers in membership ranged between 41 and 57.
In 1890 a note is recorded that a return of numbers in membership must be made annually to the Association.
Numbers in membership increased in the following years; 74 in 1890 and 101 members is recorded. It was in these years that the church called the first Pastor, James Drewitt Alford in 1896.
This membership book was used up to the year 1936.
At the end of the book a register of Dedication of Infants is recorded:
24 July 1921 by Rev W Lonsdale 6 Sept 1925 by Rev J W Cannings 21 July 1929 by-Rev W R Ponton and a farther 15 entries -no dates given.
Some of the street and road names mentioned that have changed:
Church gate - Church yard or lane
Industry Street - Beveridge Street
Catsick Road - Cotes Road
West End - Old cottages now replaced in Bridge Street by grassed area by the river
Jerusalem - now the High Street/South Street island
New Brighton - cottages in Nottingham Road
Crown Lane - Cotes Road to the old Board School (now converted into two houses)
Freestone Cottages - Grove Lane, Scout hut built there
Causeway End - South Street cottages/ Melton Road corner
Cliff Cottages - new bungalows stand on this ground - Sileby Road.