Welcome to the Bethesda Methodist Chapel website.


Mary Shelley Poster WEB (1).jpg

WW1 Exhibition Open - Free Entry

The Bethesda 'Our Boys' WW1 Exhibition opened on Saturday 9th August at 12.00 noon and will remain open to visitors for the next few years. The exhibition will be open during our open days and on request for organised visits to the chapel. As our research will carry on until all 274 names are covered the exhibition will change from time to time to include new research and cover well known battles. There will be no charge to visit the exhibition

Heritage Lottery Fund awards £5,000 to the Friends of Bethesda Chapel

to build a First World War Centenary Exhibition.

The Friends of Bethesda Chapel in Albion Street, Hanley, Stoke on Trent have received £5,000 from the Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF) to research the lives of the 274 men named on their WW1 Rolls of Honour and known as Bethesda Our Boys. Awarded through HLF’s First World War: then and now programme, the exhibition will focus on telling the story of the lives of the Bethesda Our Boys.

To mark the Centenary of the First World War, the project will tell the story of as many of the Bethesda Our Boys as possible from where and when they were born and grew up to where and when they enlisted, where their regiment fought, when they returned or died ending in what happened to them after the war ended. All the Friends research will be used to build an exhibition inside the chapel to enable local people to preserve the memories and heritage of the people who lived through the First World War. The Friends of Bethesda will collect photographs, newspaper clippings, documents, letters and photos of keepsakes, as well as family tales passed down to help build a picture of Bethesda’s roll in the local community during World War One.

This unique project has never been attempted before and the information gathered will be digitally recorded and placed on the Bethesda Chapel website (www.bethesda-stoke.info) where anyone can access and contribute information via our “Memories” link. The full research will also be offered to the Stoke on Trent City Archives for public family history research and to regimental museums for their records.

The Friends of Bethesda are thrilled to have been awarded this grant and though it will mean lots of work we are looking forward to building a Bethesda Our Boys WW1 Exhibition that will both inform and please our visitors

The Friends of Bethesda would like to thank Stoke on Trent City Council and the City Centre Partnership for all their help and encouragement.



Phase Two of the restoration of Bethesda Chapel is now completed and the chapel is open again to visitors. The Friends of Bethesda welcome organised visits to the chapel by established groups and schools. 


Prince Charles & Camilla visit Bethesda Methodist Chapel.

Prince of Wales Coat Of ArmsTHE PRINCE of Wales visited Stoke-on-Trent on 19th Feb 2010 to celebrate the 100 years of the federation of the six towns.

Prince Charles and the Duchess of Cornwall arrived to visit key sites and meet people across the city.

The Royal visit took in the Potteries Museum and Art Gallery, Bethesda Chapel and Emma Bridgewater factory in Hanley, as well the Kings Hall and Civic Centre in Stoke and Dudson factory in Tunstall.

Please feel free to view our image gallery of this event and to read a short account of their visit written by Fred Hughes, Chairman of the Friends of Bethesda.



Historic Chapels Trust and the Friends of Bethesda have been given permission to restore the outer buildings and convert them into a toilet block and meeting room. A schedule of work has been drawn up and a broad estimate of £40,000 has been suggested. HCT and the Friends are now making every effort to raise this money and any help would be appreciated. The Friends of Bethesda feel that we can open the chapel more often and for greater uses if their are toilets. If you think you can help with this project in any way (donation of money or building materials), please let the Friends group know.

contact the Friends of Bethesda


We have run a series of monthly “Open Days” from September 2007 – please see “Events” and “Open Days” sections for details of proposed opening arrangements in 2016.


This website is dedicated to the Historic Chapels Trust's proposal to restore the Bethesda Methodist Chapel in Hanley, Stoke-on-Trent, and make it available for a wide range of uses.

Bethesda Methodist Chapel is one of the largest nonconformist chapels outside London. It is reputed to have seated up to 2,000 people. Many people have fond memories of Bethesda and want to see it restored to its former glory and open again to the public.

On this website you will find information about the building's history, the plans for restoration, how you can help and how you can get in touch with the Historic Chapels Trust and our local supporters' group.

Funding for the creation of this website has been provided by the Heritage Lottery Fund.

The Heritage Lottery Fund, English Heritage, North Staffordshire Regeneration Zone and Stoke-on-Trent City Council also provided financial support towards the first phase of repairs.

Funding for the second phase of repairs has been provided by The Heritage Lottery Fund, English Heritage, a range of other grant giving trusts and private individuals.  The Friends of Bethesda have also raised £17,000 towards the phase II repairs. 

Click here to see where we are.

Coming shortly on the website... a series of photos depicting the phase II repairs as the works progress.

Buy a mug to help our funds!



Tristram Hunt, new Stoke on Trent Central MP, visits Bethesda Saturday 3rd July 2010.


Bethesda Royal Visit

February 2010: Prince Charles and the Duchess of Cornwall visit Bethesda.
Read about the visit & view more images here...



The front, Open Day, 8 September 2007

September 2007: Phase I of the restoration works has been completed, and for the first time in twenty years the public can enter the building (click on the photo for a bigger version).


Crowds for a carol service

Crowds assemble for the annual carol service at Bethesda Chapel, c. 1950 (click on the photo for a bigger version)


Perhaps a nursing service?

Perhaps this was taken at a special nursing service? Do you see anyone you know? (click on the photo for a bigger version)


The interior in 1970

This is what the interior looked like in 1970, with its elegant wooden seating, spectacular pulpit and impressive organ front. We hope to restore the current derelict building to something like its former splendour. It's a big job – take a look at the 360-degree panoramas...