CHADKIRK CHAPEL, ROMILEY

Grid Ref: SJ 941 902
4 January 2006 and 2 December 2014

 

Chadkirk Chapel
Chadkirk Chapel in December 2014

 

Chadkirk Chapel has had a chequered history.   It is traditionally held that St. Chad founded a monastic cell on this site in the 7th century.  St. Chad was a missionary educated at Lindisfarne who was sent from Iona by St. Columba to preach west of the Pennines.  He was bishop of Lichfield from 669 to 672.  The first documentary account is in 1374 with the name Chaddkyrke.  In the 16th century it was used as a chanty chapel by the Davenports of Henbury who claimed to have founded the chapel.  They acquired the land in 1381.  At the time of the suppression of the Chantries in 1548, the chapel was seized by the Crown but the family were later able to argue their case to keep it for family use.  However, in due course it became a disused and then a stable.  From 1649 it was used by Protestant Dissenters and registered as a place for worship under the Act of Toleration of 1689 in the reign of William and Mary. Puritanism flourished in this area under the influence of the Bradshaw family of Marple Hall.  In 1705, the Dissenters were expelled and the chapel was abandoned until 1747, when it was restored for use by the Church of England.   It was restored again in 1761, 1860 and 1876.  In the last or these restorations all the pews and the galleries and the screen were removed.  The chapel was eclipsed by the building of Romiley Church in 1865.   It fell into disuse again and was sold to the Urban District Council in 1971 and passed to the Metropolitan Borough of Stockport in 1974.  At that time the only part of the original timber framed building to survive was in the chancel.  The chapel was restored again in 1994.

Churches dedicated to St. Chad are commonly by wells or springs and Chadkirk is no exception. St. Chad's Well or The Holy Well is situated just to the north west (SJ 939 903).  My picture of the entrance was taken on a winter's afternoon with the aid of flash.

  St. Chad's Well
  St. Chad's Well, Dec 2006

Sources:

There are information panels by the chapel and well. The information on the chapel appears to have been based on that given in by Raymond Richards.
Old Cheshire Churches with a supplementary survey of the lesser old chapels of Cheshire, completely revised and enlarged by Raymond Richards, first published in 1947 and reprinted by E. J. Morten, Didsbury, 1973.

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