It is reported that there were Baptists in Bury in 1688 when it was then a hamlet on the edge of the moors. Prior to 1836 there were no Baptist chapels in Bury but in 1835 twelve people meeting in a schoolroom bought land in Freetown where they built a chapel and a chapel house which was opened in October 1836. The Sunday school was started at the same time and by 1868 there were 147 pupils. In 1886 the Sunday school building was added to the church.
By the end of the century the church had had 4 pastors and had grown into a strong and flourishing work.
In the following 80 years there was only one pastor and the work declined almost to extinction.
By 1980 the congregation consisted of 16 adults and 8 children, the building was in a state of disrepair and maintenance impossible.
Some felt it was time to close the doors but a few others had a vision of relocating and rebuilding.
In 1981 the building was sold. The congregation struggled to meet, then in l983 the old school kitchens in Radcliffe Road were purchased and the first service was held there on 12th August with 12 people.
The church struggled on for another three years, time and money were running out, but in answer to much prayer two men, Geoff King from Watford and David Higham from Wigan, felt the call to come to Bury and so began the pioneer work known as “The Bury Project”.
After 5 years God had so blessed the work that the church was in a position to support a full time pastor. Youth work and a toddlers group were well established, the congregation was growing and the impossible was beginning to be possible.
As the church approached the Millenium it had really outgrown the use of the old school kitchens which were no longer fit for purpose. The church decided, in dependence upon the Lord, that a new building was needed.
In 2004 the new church building was opened and at the Open Day on the 4th December over 500 people from the local area visited to see displays of various activities and join in the fun. A few weeks later the building was filled with over 200 people met together to worship and to give God thanks for the opening of a new chapter in the ongoing story of his goodness to the church. To Him be the glory!
Sunday Service Times
Morning - 10:30am
Evening - 6:00pm
Radcliffe Road Baptist Church
Radcliffe Road, Bury, BL9 9LH