History


In October 1979 a proposal had been put forward for a rebuilding project and a phased rebuilding programme was instigated. As funds were raised the first phase was started. Phase 1 was the brick built Sunday School hall this was ready in 1984, following the demolition of the old one which had served for almost 20 years. Then Phase two took place which was the addition of the flat on top. Then eventually after generous donations, along with much prayer and various challenges, Phase 3, the new church building was constructed and opened 19th October 2008.

In the mid-1950s, we had seen the children’s and young people’s work increase so much that it was felt an additional building was necessary. Every function, from Christmas parties to girls and boys clubs and, in the early days, even accommodation for evangelists working at the Epsom Downs Races, was being catered for in the one building with very limited facilities. A development fund was started for an additional building, and by 1960 with much help, plans were eventually passed and the prefabricated building ordered. There was tremendous enthusiasm in this venture, especially by the young people. With an expert in charge the foundations were laid, drainage trenches dug and, when the building was finally erected, the work of painting the interior was carried out. We felt we had much to thank God for, and the young people had a hall of which they could be proud of.

Closer links with the Tadworth Church were again formed, and, following discussions in 1945, Rev William C Saunders was inducted into the joint pastorate in October 1946. He and his wife ministered to the Churches until November 1952 through six years of valuable, though often arduous and difficult, service. They lived on the Tattenham Corner estate and were to play a significant role in the establishment of Tattenham Corner Evangelical Church (now Merland Rise Church).

It was at this time that the Lower Kingswood Mission became the Lower Kingswood Evangelical Church, affiliated to the Fellowship of Independent Evangelical Churches. While nothing dramatic followed this step, there was a new sense of belonging to the wider
fellowship of churches.

The original ‘iron room’ had been erected on land subject to a seven year lease, and as 1930 and the end of the lease approached, the present site was purchased. The new Hall was opened on Wednesday 10th June 1931 with meetings packed to the back of the vestibule – a time of united praise, joy and thanksgiving. The work continued to go ahead in the new Hall, and tribute was paid to the friends of the Tadworth Mission for the great help given, especially in the Sunday School.

LKEC started in 1923 as a Mission Hall branch of a similar fellowship at Tadworth. Like many small churches at that time, it met in an 'iron chapel' which was replaced in 1931 with a more substantial hall.

 
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