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HER Number:MDV7376
Name:Smallridge Methodist Chapel, All Saints


Former Wesleyan Methodist chapel built probably in 1796.


Grid Reference:ST 302 009
Map Sheet:ST30SW
Admin AreaDevon
Civil ParishAll Saints
DistrictEast Devon
Ecclesiastical ParishCHARDSTOCK

Protected Status

Other References/Statuses

  • Old DCC SMR Ref: ST30SW/13
  • Old Listed Building Ref (II): 87802

Monument Type(s) and Dates

  • WESLEYAN METHODIST CHAPEL (XVIII to XXI - 1796 AD to 2009 AD (Between))

Full description

Thorne, R., Untitled Source (Un-published). SDV102884.

Ordnance Survey, 1880-1899, First Edition Ordnance 25 inch map (Cartographic). SDV336179.

'Methodist Chapel (Wesleyan)' shown on 19th century map as a small building on the west side of the road to the south of 'Smallridge' village.

Ordnance Survey, 1904 - 1906, Second Edition Ordnance Survey 25 inch Map (Cartographic). SDV325644.

English Heritage, 1984, Chardstock, 38 (List of Blds of Arch or Historic Interest). SDV322469.

Methodist Chapel in Smallridge probably built in 1813. Small chapel of rendered stone rubble or cob with a corrugated iron hipped roof. Single storey. Bowed front of three bays with plain pilasters. Left and right two centred arch wooden windows with Y-tracery and glazing bars. Plain central two centred arch doorway with double plank doors. Very shallow depth, the rear wall is also bowed, forming lozenge shaped plan, and now clad in corrugated iron. Other details: LBS Number 87802.

Brown, S., 2009, Smallridge Methodist Chapel, Chardstock, Devon. Building Recording (Report - non-specific). SDV344640.

Documentary sources say the chapel opened in either 1796 or 1813, and describe its paln as 'unique with convex front and rear walls'. It was formerly thatched, and subsequently re-roffed with corrugated iron circa 1930. The unconventional plan may have been intended to represent the form of a boat, possibly Noah's Ark. There is a tradition that there was formerly a gallery at the north end of the chapel, reached by an external stair against the north wall.
The walls of of local limestone rubble and flint, with dressed limestone quoins. The limestone comes from the nearby Tolcis quarry, the flints from river gravels in the Axe valley. The mortar is buff lime containing lime flecks and sand. Walls were lime rendered internally and externally. In places, the masonry incorporates timber lacing - a feature which became common in the late 18th- and early 19th centuries.
The front is divided into three bays by four plain pilasters. The central doorway and two flanking windows are pointed and gothic in style. A smaller window with a pointed head survives high up in the rear (west) wall.
Evidence for a gallery comprises the doorway high up in the north wall and a series of joist sockets revealed in the internal wall face during removal of the old plaster. These appear to be an origianal feature. The doorway is round-headed, rather than pointed like the windows. It has been blocked to form a niche and is presently 1.45 metres high, but was formerly 30 centimetres taller. This has been identified as the entrance into the former gallery. The sockets for ther gallery's floor joists have been infilled, some with bricks.
The gallery was removed sometime before the construction of the lean-to store building adjoining the north wall, which is said to have taken place circa 1935-40.
The roof is hipped. Its middle section comprises two tie-beam trusses with queen struts, butt-purlins and an angled ridge piece. The joint between principal rafters and tie-beam is mortice-and-tenon. The trusses and purlins are pegged. The side purlins have tusk tenons projecting through the principal rafters and pegged on the other side. Most of the common rafters are trimmed softwood poles. The ceiling joists (now replaced) adjoined the sides of the tie-beams so that their flush undersides formed a flat ceiling. The ceiling plaster was applied to a layer of straw set across the joints and held in position by laths nailed lengthwise along the joists.
The tie-beam roof trusses have secondary, inserted king posts attached with iron straps. These date perhaps from the early 20th century. The corrugated iron roofing was nailed to three narrow timbers set across the backs of the common rafters. The origianl thatching laths were doubtless removed at this time.
The masonry blocking off the gallery doorway is likely to date from the early 20th century.

Sources / Further Reading

SDV102884Un-published: Thorne, R.. Methodist Chapels in Devon. Unknown.
SDV322469List of Blds of Arch or Historic Interest: English Heritage. 1984. Chardstock. Historic Houses Register. Website. 38.
SDV325644Cartographic: Ordnance Survey. 1904 - 1906. Second Edition Ordnance Survey 25 inch Map. Second Edition Ordnance Survey 25 inch Map. Map (Digital).
SDV336179Cartographic: Ordnance Survey. 1880-1899. First Edition Ordnance 25 inch map. First Edition Ordnance Survey 25 inch Map. Map (Digital).
SDV344640Report - non-specific: Brown, S.. 2009. Smallridge Methodist Chapel, Chardstock, Devon. Building Recording. Stewart Brown Associates Report. A4 Stapled + Digital.

Associated Monuments: none recorded

Associated Finds: none recorded

Associated Events

  • EDV4727 - Building Recording, Smallridge Methodist Chapel

Date Last Edited:Jun 9 2010 1:28PM