Congregational churches and missions

Hanover Chapel
  • Cost: £3600 (1817)
  • (Website)
  • Built: Architect: Cost:
  • Dedicated:
  • No. of seats: 850 (1894); congregation 495 (1902/3)
  • Church building sold to another Christian denomination and the congregation moved to share premises at the Copleston Centre

According to tradition, the Rev. John Maynard, dispossessed Vicar of St Giles, Camberwell, founded a chapel or meeting House in Meeting House Lane in 1657 after holding meetings in his home for several years. He was succeeded by two further former Church of England clergy, but by 1689 the Rev. John Beaumont was a genuine “dissenter by birth, training and conviction”.

Hanover Chapel on right-hand side, c1905

In 1717, the congregation moved to the new building, still called The Meeting House, at the corner of Rye Lane and Peckham High Street. In 1817 it was rebuilt during the ministry of the popular Dr William Bengo Collyer and named Hanover Chapel after the patronage of the Royal House of Hanover. Dr Collyer was only 18 years old when he came to Peckham in 1802, but his predecessor’s views and preaching had reduced the flock to a mere 10.

From 1910, the congregation met for a while in the Collyer Hall, Collyer Place and then in 1920 moved to the church in Bellenden Road which had been purchased from the United Methodist Church.

(In 1920, the chapel was demolished and replaced by a shop, and later Peckham Picture Playhouse).

Finally, in 1979 this congregation (now United Reformed Church) with the longest history in Peckham moved to share premises at the Copleston Centre (see St Saviour’s Church), and the old building was transformed into Faith Pentecostal Chapel.


Clifton Congregational Church
  • Asylum Road
  • Built: Architect: Cost: £2,500
  • Dedicated: 26 October 1859
  • No. of seats: 800 (1894); congregation 1,287 (1902/3)
  • Demolished

A small congregation, led by Rev. David Nimmo, started meeting together in a small hall in Arthur Street in 1851. The church was built and opened in 1859 and the schoolroom added two years later.

This building was erected about twelve years ago, at a cost of £2,500. It is capable of seating 550 people. In connection with this chapel are several societies for the relief of the sick poor, ragged schools, and auxiliary societies for Home and Foreign Missions and Bible and Tract Societies. The Sunday schools have about 300 scholars.

The Rev. Aaron Buzacott, B.A., author of “Mission Life in the Islands of the Pacific,” has been pastor for more than six years.

Ye Parish of Camerwell W.H. Blanch (1875)

Revd George Ernest Thorn became Minister there in 1900.

Clifton Chapel opposite Christ Church Sunday School

After damage in both world wars the church was rebuilt on the same site and opened on 3 May 1952. It finally closed on 24 May 1972, was demolished, and the site later used for housing (Clifton Court).

Mission halls
Meeting House Lane (Clifton Congregational Church) opened 1884.

  • Congregation 107 (1902/3)


Peckham Rye Congregational Church
  • Linden Grove (formerly Cemetery Road)
  • Built: Architect: Cost:
  • Dedicated: 5 May 1857
  • No. of seats: 400 (1894); congregation 521 (1902/3)
  • Demolished in the 1960s

The population in Nunhead grew during the nineteenth century:

This chapel owes its erection to the efforts of friends living on the Rye and at Nunhead, who felt the need of a convenient place of worship. There was a small building erected on private ground at Nun Green, where some few worshipped, Mr. Austin, a schoolmaster at Nunhead, acting as minister for some time. On his removal to Canada, Mr. J. Reid, one of the secretaries of the London Missionary Society, with Mr. Grow and others, officiated, and the congregation feeling the need of a larger place of worship, collected money for the purpose of enlarging the building there. At this time, Mr. Gamble leaving Hanover Chapel, several of the worshippers there left too, and uniting with the friends at Nun Green, they exerted themselves and conjointly raised the present handsome and suitable building in Linden Grove, then called Cemetery Road.

The new structure was opened in May, 1857, the Rev. J. Sherman, Henry Gamble, Newman Hall, and R. W. Betts taking part in the services.

The first pastor was the Rev. J. Hiles Hitchens, F.L.S. He was afterwards succeeded by the Rev. L. Herschell, and subsequently by the present pastor, the Rev. J. Chetwode Postans.

Ye Parish of Camberwell W.H. Blanch (1875)

Free Church/Culmore Road Mission

Culmore Road

  • No. of seats: 400 (1894); congregation 159 (1902/3)
Howbury Road Mission

Howbury Road Mission Hall (1991)

Evelina Hall, Nunhead, opened in 1884. It was replaced by a mission chapel in Howbury Road in 1892.

  • Congregation 125 (1902/3)



Collyer Memorial Hall
  • Congregation 30 (1902/3)