Calvinistic Methodist, Beddgelert

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Please note: This chapel closed in 1987 and was demolished c. 1997

In 1987, its final year as a Methodist Chapel.
Reproduced courtesy of Flickr contributor SteveinLeighton who retains all rights.

A Calvanistic Methodist Chapel was first erected at Beddgelert as early as 1780. It may have been known as Capel Mawr.

A new chapel was built in 1859 close to the Saracen’s Head Hotel. William Skinner Searell (1831-1907) was Sunday School Superintendent for many years.

The high roof of the chapel is just visible

 

Alterations were made in c.1907 which saw a new frontage added complete with two eastern-style towers.

 

The original chapel behind the new facade

 

The building remained in use until 1987. It was then suffering from dry rot and the dwindling congregation could not afford the £20,000 cost to put it right. When the chapel ultimately became unsafe, the schoolroom (see below) was used for services.

The chapel was demolished as late as 1997. The boundary wall complete with railings still stands and the entrance gate now opens on to a small garden where a stone, bearing the inscription “Safle Capel M.C. Beddgelert 1859-1987” now commemorates the site.

The Sunday Schoolroom adjacent to the chapel built c.1906 remains but since c.2002 has been a private dwelling. Although tenders for construction of the new schoolroom and alterations to the church were invited at the same time in 1905, it would appear a satisfactory tender for the schoolroom was secured first with tenders for the church alterations being sought again in 1906

The former Sunday Schoolroom pictured in 2012
Photograph courtesy of, and copyright of, Ben Abel

1869:

Deaths – Jones – On the 17th inst., aged 93 years, the Rev. David Jones, Calvinistic Minister, Beddgelert. He had been in the ministry for 65 years.

Birmingham Daily Post, Wednesday 29 July 1891

1891:

Sir E. Watkin, M.P., has kindly taken to the Calvanistic Methodist Chapel at Beddgelert, near the foot of Snowdon, and has not only become a liberal contributor to its funds, but has presented it with a freehold piece of land for a burial ground.

Birmingham Daily Post, Wednesday 29 July 1891

1893:

The freehold ground rent of £1 per annum secured on the Beddgelert Calvanistic Methodist Chapel, was knocked down to Mr. J. Roberts, Ddolgam, one of the deacons, acting on behalf of the church, for £40.

Mid Wales Advertiser, Saturday 12 August 1893

1895: Sudden death of a Welsh Minister

The Rev. William Ellis, Calvanistic Methodist minister, Beddgelert, whilst speaking at a church meeting on Friday night, complained of being unwell, and not able to proceed any further. He was then seen to fall on his side. Dr. Evans, Portmadoc, was sent for, but the reverend gentleman never regained consciousness, and died on Saturday morning, from apoplexy. He was 68 years old, and had been a successful pastor for many years.

Cardiff Times, 20 July 1895

1895:

Whilst speaking at a church meeting last Friday evening, July 12th, the Rev. William Ellis, Calvanistic Methodist minister, Beddgelert, said “Oh, I cannot say anything more. I am very unwell.” He then put his hand on his head and fell on his left side and never spoke after. The event caused consternation in the chapel. One of the members went on a bicycle to Portmadoc, a distance of over seven miles, and brought Dr. Henry Evans, but the reverend gentleman passed away early on the Saturday morning. He was about 68 years old, and had been a pastor in the chapel for many years.

Wrexham Advertiser, 20 July 1895


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Capel Peniel, Nantmor

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A Calvanistic Methodist Chapel was first erected at Nantmor in 1829. It was rebuilt in 1868 and is now a Grade II Listed Building.


1856:

Notice is hereby given, that a separate building, named Peniel, situate at Nantmor, in the parish of Beddgelert, in the county of Merioneth, and district of Festiniog, being a building certified according to law as a place of religious worship, was, on the 19th day of June, 1856, duly registered for solemnizing marriages therein, pursuant to the act of the 6th and 7th Wm. IV., cap. 85. Witness my hand this 23rd day of June, 1856. John Lloyd, Superintendent Registrar.

The Gazette, Tuesday 1 July 1856


1873:

Early on Friday morning, the 3rd inst., the above district was visited by one of the most severe storms experienced for some years, the flashes of lightning being almost incessant. A small chapel in the upper part of Nantmor, belonging to the Calvinistic Methodists, was almost destroyed by the lightning. It seems that the electric fluid first struck the earth about five yards from the end of the chapel, passed under a boundary wall and a small stable without doing any damage, then struck the gable end opposite the fire-grate, which it forced in, breaking every pane of glass in the building, and smashing the pulpit and several seats. It appears then to have travelled up the chimney flue, until it reached within a few feet of the top, where it scattered, blowing off nearly the whole of the roof of the building, and throwing the heavy stones of the chimney stack to a considerable distance. It also killed some sheep which happened to be near at the time. With these warnings, it is worth enquiring how many of our chapels, erected at so great a cost, are furnished with lightning conductors?

Llangollen Advertiser, 17 January 1873


1891:

Notice is hereby given, that a separate building, named Peniel Chapel, situate at Nantmor, in the parish of Beddgelert, in the county of Merioneth, in the district of Festiniog, being a building certified according to law as a place of religious worship, was, on the 28th day of March, 1891, duly registered for solemnizing marriages therein, pursuant to the Act of 6th and 7th Wm. 4, cap. 85, being substituted for Peniel Chapel, Nantmor, Beddgelert, now disused. Witness my hand this 28th day of March, 1891.Thomas Roberts, Superintendent Registrar.

The Gazette,  Friday 3 April 1891


1913:

Click here to see a photograph of female members of the Capel Peniel Temperance Society taken in 1913. The following persons have been identified but there are a number of others still to be confirmed:

  • Mary Ann EVANS (gwraig y crudd)
  • Jane HUGHES, Tanrhiw (?)
  • Lily HUGHES, Tanrhiw
  • Ann JONES, Ty Capel
  • Annie JONES, Tanrhiw
  • Mary Ellen JONES (Williams), Garddllygaidydydd
  • Jane ROBERTS, Corlwyni
  • Jane ROBERTS, Tan y Bryn
  • Ann WILLIAMS, Ty Mawr
  • Laura WILLIAMS Ty Newydd

1918:

Peniel Church, Nantmor, collected £18 towards supplying comforts for men from the district on active service.

North Wales Chronicle, 29 March 1918

1925:

Shortly after a service at Nantmor Methodist Chapel, near Portmadoc, on Wednesday night, the entire slated roof of the chapel, including the rafters, was blown away, the greater portion dropping on the roofs of three houses 60 yards away and smashing the roofs and windows.  Fortunately no one was hurt, but the damaged houses had to be vacated.

The Times, 1 January 1926


2016:

Comedian Greg Davies visited Capel Peniel in 2016, as part of the BBC TV Series Who Do You Think You Are? shown on 1 February 2017, to learn more about his great-great-grandfather Evan Owen, a farmer, who was a deacon at the chapel.


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