[Copyright- 2011 Keighley Shared Church Ecumenical Council]
And that is how the mystery of the plaque's disappearance was for many years until, as part of a house clearance, the it was found left outside a house on Chelsea Street, Keighley, alongside some wheelie bins and a pile of rubbish, and was saved in the nick of time before being collected with the rest of the house rubbish and lost forever. It can only be assumed that a thoughtful parishioner from the Chapel had taken the plaque home for safe keeping when the chapel closed in 1978, and it had been sat in their attic ever since.
WW1 must have been a worrying time for James [Senior] and the family with, at one point, four sons service in the war in France.
|Temple Steet Chapel|
|Temple St Chapel interior|
As far as the history of the chapel is concerned, briefly it was opened as a Wesleyan Methodist Chapel on 27th November 1846 with a capacity of seating 1,600 worshippers. It prospered for many years but it became increasingly difficult to continue, due to the cost of maintaining such a large building with a dwindling membership. Discussions were opened to set up a shared agreement with the nearby Keighley Parish Church and a sharing agreement was eventually signed, and the Chapel finally closed it's doors in 1978,
The final service at the Chapel was reported as follows in the Keighley News at the time.
The Temple Street Chapel premises were sold to the local Council for £36,000, with presumably anything of value removed, including the plaque and stained glass windows, and it eventually became a Muslim Mosque, which it continues to be to the present time.
|Temple St Memorial Plaque|
[I am grateful to the Men of Worth project for help with this article . Their website is here]
As a postscript, the final chapter to this story has now taken place. This WW1 plaque was put on display recently alongside the stained glass windows from Temple Street Chapel. This story can be read by clicking here.