100 Years of the Congregational/Trinity Church
In 1892 a new church opened in Market Lavington. This was the new building for the Congregational Church, allowing it to move out of the old Quaker Meeting House.
We showed a picture of bricks being delivered to build the chapel in a piece on Fowell Traction Engines. Click here.
The centenary was celebrated in 1992 with a number of events. A local free church magazine, ‘Link’, ran some articles of memories by church members. Today we look at the memories of Mrs Hobbs. In 1992 she was the oldest member of the church. She was born in 1902, so her memories date from before 1910.
Let’s transcribe her memories
My earliest memories, 87 years ago as a little girl are – going to chapel, sitting between my mother and father (Mr and Mrs George Pike) – the choir and organ were then at the back – standing on the seat turning round and looking at the ladies in the choir. Especially Mrs David Draper who opened her mouth well when singing! MRS Draper was the grandmother of Mrs Ada Askey who was our organist for a good number of years.
The Minister I remember was the Rev. Fred Lowe who still lived in his own house just opposite the church when he retired. My dad, every Sunday morning helped him across to the morning service. I can remember him walking round with his walking stick, which he left to dad and I still have it and make use of it myself. This was well over 80 years ago when it was the Congregational Church. As the years went by we had a wonderful Sunday school. All our social life revolved around the church – the Prize Givings, Christmas tree then lit by candles, our Sunday School anniversaries with seats having to be put up the aisles, practising for Sunday School concerts and Social evenings held in the Sunday school (the old chapel).
The outings to Edington Tea Gardens or Bratton, Dad getting the wagon and horses from the local farmers then having the wooden boards nailed on each side for seats, very bumpy but we enjoyed our day out.
The Sunday School has been a vital part of the Church going back a good many years. The superintendent was Mr James Hobbs of Easterton (no relation) a devoted leader. Several of us little girls used to go part way to Easterton to meet him. Our next leader was Mr Samuel Hopkins (we always called him Uncle Sam) who lived for his church, the choir and Sunday School. Then Mr George Pike (my dad) carried on. He had a class of bigger boys. Some young men called their seats ‘The Lions’ Den’. He was church secretary for many years and a local preacher.
I can well remember the day in 1932 when Harry and myself were married. The minister was the Rev Daniel Jones. Being the first couple to be married by him, he gave us a nice bible written inside;
‘To Betty Pike and Harry Hobbs
“No one is poor who is rich in love”’
Thinking back over the years has brought back many happy memories of the Sunday school, Choir and Chapel.
Mrs Betty Hobbs
Twenty years on we often get Mrs Hobbs’s daughter to help identify people in museum photos.