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1881 November 26th.(Reported again in 1918 February 23rd.)
The H.M.Dockyard church caught fire.Mr.H.Chandler a Metropolitan Policeman was on duty.A gale was raging at the time.An hour or two before the outbreak of the fire the streets were almost deserted .A vessel was ashore on the Red Sands with men clinging to the rigging. The fire was possibly started by the heating apparatus, some sparks were blown under the slates and ignited the material there about 8.30 or 9pm. The Dockyard Chapel as it was called was on fire.The parapet crashed down at 11pm burying four men,one a Pembroke Marsnew was crushed to death.The church was built by Nicholson in 1824 but did not open until 1829.Prior to this the church was situated on the left hand side of the new road ,a thoroughfare from the High Street of Bluetown from opposite where the Red Lion stands to Sheerness Garrison.This was before the massive brick wall which costs 50.000 was built to enclose the Dockyard from Rats Bay to Naval Terrace and from the Church to the Gun Wharf.The present church is either the fouth or fifth which has been built in connection with the Dockyard .One church was over the Dockyard gates .There was also a Church Ship berthed near the Cornwallis Jetty approached by a long gangway .In the church today is an altar of one of the former Dockyard Churches dated 1744.


James Prankard, Minister of the Bethel Indepedent Chapel from 19th February 1811 to 11th January 1838.

By Alfred T Sears                       PRINTED BY Stanley L Hunt Northants 4074/64.

 1816 April 29th Mary Little now Mary Jenner to be admonished by two elders Mr.Jacobs and Mr.Dyer. 

1816 November 25th It was determined that David consequence of impropiety of conduct,shall be dismissed this church. 

1817 September 1st Mr.Adkins having several times been admonished for trading in contraband articles,but persisting of it ,is now dismissed from the church by a unanimous vote.

 1817 December resolved that every subsciber to the coals shall bring two pieces each. (for the poor? or to heat the church?) 

1818 31st August The church consisting of all the male members ,especially called for the purpose, agreed unanimously to give me (the Minister)the income arising from the pews as my future salary. 

1821 31st January Mr.G Moulton dismissed from church at his own request ,his dismission was received by the church with unanimous consent ,being unfit to receive its communion being both covertous and quarrelsome. (The church had nearly 500 sittings and was nearly always full) 

1822 January 30th Joseph Berry to be suspended during the church's pleasure,having committed folly in Israel.

 1827 January 3rd Mr.Joseph Berry re-admitted after his suspension,by a large majority. 

1827 October 3rd Mrs.Dempster to be admonished 1827 November 1st Mrs.Dempster left us to join the Methodist. 

1832 20th July Mr and Mrs Trigger called about Mrs Gooding who is of bad spirit.

 1832 25th July Mrs.Gooding called on me and confessed her fault ,but was not as humble as could be desired .I wished her to try to restrain her passion, which she promised to do. 

1832 30th July Received a letter from Mr.Welbington in favour of Mrs Gooding.

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