A Promising Start
In 1824 Primitive Methodist preachers first visited Wootton Bassett and soon obtained a cottage for their services and then rented the 'Long Room' of the old Royal Oak Inn. In 1831 two houses and a garden were bought on the present site and converted into a chapel. As the Methodist cause prospered, in 1838 the old chapel was pulled down and the foundation stones of the present building were laid. Wootton Bassett Primitive Methodist Chapel, as it was then known, was part of the famous Brinkworth Circuit.
The 'Hillside' and the 'High Street'
At the other end of the High Street the Wesleyan Methodists had also established their own chapel in 1855. This chapel had its own minister until 1897 but after that was served from the Swindon Circuit. In 1965 the two Methodist congregations in Wootton Bassett were merged. The Wesleyan 'High Street' chapel was demolished as part of a road widening scheme and the united work centred on the Primitive 'Hillside' chapel which became Wootton Bassett Methodist Church.
The building has seen numerous alterations and extensions, more recently including the building of the annexe in 1967 and the addition of a new entrance porch plus re-siting of the organ, pulpit and choir seating as part of major improvements in 1975.
In 1989 serious thought about the general state of the building gradually gave way to a realisation that a complete redevelopment of the whole premises should take place. Work commenced in July 1991 and we were invited to hold our morning services in Sacred Heart Roman Catholic Church, an arrangement that worked extremely well. After nine months in exile, a service of Thanksgiving and Rededication was held in the redeveloped premises in March 1992. Much work remained to be done and on Sunday 14 March 1993, our Church Anniversary, we were able to celebrate the completion of the project and give thanks to God for answering our redevelopment prayers. In March 2014 we officially changed our name to Royal Wootton Bassett Methodist Church.