Chapter Four - The Opening Ceremony

Interior of the Church

The actual opening of the church four months later, began with a service on Thursday 5th November at 3pm followed by a tea at 4:30pm (the price was 6d per person and 200 guests attended) and a public meeting was held afterwards at 6:30pm. At the opening of the church, the following was reported in the Bedfordshire Mercury: The new chapel is a pleasing erection prominently situated on the Cople Road at Cardington […] the front and the porch are built of local stone, coursed rubble, with Bath stone tracery windows and dressings. […] Fresh air inlets are fixed in the walls, and an exhaust pump ventilator is arranged in the roof […] and the artificial lighting is supplied by lamps. A vestry is carried out in a similar manner and a kitchen is fitted up with sink, pump, copper, and cupboards, with tile flooring. […] The site is enclosed with a wrought iron fencing […] Bright sunshine prevailed during the opening ceremony outside the new building on the afternoon of yesterday week [Thurs 5th Nov 1908] under the presidency of the Rev. V.A Barradale.

Mrs Barradale was presented with a silver key and opened the church. Dr Horton preached from the Bible and among the passages he read were the lines “It was not because of any good deeds that we ourselves had done, but because of His own mercy that He saved us”. The actual building cost £689 and Mr Black, MP, said “he hoped the village chapel would stand for and mean something for the young people and the old people in Cardington. It should be the home of the people, meaning something to them every day of the week”. Over the years the church has provided many events for locals – not just services on Sundays, as we shall see in the next few chapters.

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