Datchet 
Baptist Church
   
HISTORY OF DATCHET BAPTIST CHURCH 1801-2001

THE BEGINNINGS

Datchet Baptist Church can trace its origins back to 1785 when a group of ‘Independents’ began to meet in a barn belonging to a local farmer called Daniel Marsh. This was in the High Street near the present level crossing. They applied to the Bishop of Lincoln [Datchet was then in the Diocese of Lincoln] to register the barn as a place of worship on 11 October 1785. Six people signed the document John Searle, Ellen Marsh, John Fleetwood Marsh, Thomas Lloyd, Edward Ball and John Henwood. However, after John Fleetwood Marsh emigrated to America in 1794, we do not know if they continued to meet for worship.

On 4 January 1801 John Palmer, Adam Gardner, Edward Mercer, Francis Willday, Charles Buckland and Thomas Press applied for permission to meet in William Hughes’ home and declared themselves to be ‘Baptists’. William Hughes lived in part of the Old Manor House, which still stands on the south side of the village green. The earliest surviving church minute book, which dates from 1844, states that the church was formed on 8 March 1801. John Palmer became the first minister of the church. 


Old Manor House where church met from 1801 - 1828
(From the Annals of Windsor, Tighe and Davis (1858)

                                                                               
                                                                                            (c1870) Datchet Village Green, looking west


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