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Visitor information

location

Waddesdon Hill
Buckinghamshire
HP18 0ER

OS Reference

SP 754 150

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Contact the office for access details: email us / call us: 0207 236 3934 (Mon-Fri 9am-5pm)

info

Parking is extremely limited and on the side of a busy road with fast-moving cars.

This humble chapel sits on the edge of the estate of one of the country’s most flamboyant châteaus, Waddesdon Manor. Its whitewashed walls and simple pews are often overlooked by those seeking richer pleasures deeper within the estate.

History

Local farmer, Francis Cox, built this white-washed preaching box in 1792 as a place of worship for agricultural labourers. Worshippers gathered from over thirty towns and villages to attend the chapel.

It’s a rendered rectangular building with a hipped roof covered in plain clay tiles, and sash windows. The dentil-brick cornice is the only hint of decoration. Inside, 19th-century benches fill the main body of the chapel. They are overlooked by an 18th-century gallery and pulpit. In all, it evokes simple rustic nonconformist piety.

The Strict & Particular Baptist sect was first mentioned in 1633, and membership depended critically on the rite of baptism. To that end, a complete lead-lined full-immersion baptism tank is found just in front of the pulpit (which is not in its original position). The ritual required full immersion three times – in the name of the Father, Son and Holy Ghost.

There was still social prejudice against Nonconformists in the late 18th century, and that explains why they chapel is built out of way – away from settlements and on the road between Aylesbury and Winchendon. Many worshippers would have travelled here on horseback; as evidenced by the stables and mounting-block.

Strict and Particular Baptist Chapel, Waddesdon Hill
Strict and Particular Baptist Chapel, Waddesdon Hill

Highlights

  • Date and name plaque of founder, Francis Cox over the porch
  • Hand-painted memorials to Francis Cox and his family
  • Full-immersion font
  • Small fireplace in women’s changing room
  • Stable and mounting block

Further reading

Please use these links if you would like to know more about the church and the surrounding area

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