An extract from the
Tottington Road Methodist Church Centenary Book, 1890-1990
In the summer of 1837, the Primitive Methodist commenced at Harwood Lee, about 2 and a half miles from Bolton. Many came to hear; and some believed, and found Peace and Joy in the Holy Ghost. A Society was formed and under the fostering care of James Maden it increased, and grew in wisdom and Piety. But in about 18 months he removed. This was a trial to the Infant Society, as the preaching and other means were in his house. Their Heavenly Father, however, directed them. They engaged a vacant house, fitted up one room for preaching, and three for a Sunday School.
The School was opened on Sunday, April 7th, 1839, and in a fortnight after this, two Sermons were preached, and collections made for it. The poor people took great interest in it, and some of the wealthier sort have kindly assisted.
R. Lomas Esq., Magistrate, gave one Pound, Ashworth Esq., ten shillings and some books, and other branches of the Ashworth family also contributed to the good cause, and severable respectable persons in the neighbourhood have likewise helped us, and to some of the above we are to look for something annually, believing as they do, that a School was very much needed at that place. We have 34 members in Society, and in the school we have 93 children, and 12 teachers. 'To God be all the Glory.'
Approved by Quarter Day. R. Davies.
On early Ordnance Survey maps the church is identified as The Hephzibah Chapel. In 1890 it became a Primitive Methodist Church and in 1932 Tottington Road Methodist Church.
The Longsight Methodist and Tottington Road Methodist communities merged in 2009 to form a single Harwood Methodist Church. Longsight Church was closed and converted to a community hall. Tottington Road Church will be sold but is used for services while a new Harwood Methodist church is being built close to the old Longsight Church (as at June 2014). See the Harwood Methodist Church website
Eric E. Mather Transcripts
Transcripts of Memorial Inscriptions, Burials, Baptisms and Marriages at Tottington Road Church were made by the late Eric E. Mather. Lancashire Online Parish Clerks are grateful to Mrs. Jean M. Mather of Harwood and the Harwood Methodist Church Council for permission to publish the transcripts.