The origins....

In 1871, Rev. John Jefferson, who had previously been the minister at Goodshaw in Rossendale, returned to Rawtenstall. He had a vision for a Baptist church in the centre of Rawtenstall and, believing it was his responsibility, he advertised in March 1872 that the services of public worship were to be held firstly in a local school and then in the Co-operative hall. God prospered the work and in December 1872 the church was formed with 18 members.

Although he was not paid for four years, Jefferson carried on the work which continued to thrive - so much so that in December 1876 a chapel (now the church hall) was opened in Kay Street. Two years later there were 46 members and 104 scholars. John Jefferson retired because of ill health in 1890, but the church still grew - in 1891 there were 20 names for baptism. Soon, the members felt that a larger building was necessary. A building fund was started in 1892 but it wasn't until 1901 that the foundation stone for the current church building was laid. The church finally opened in September 1902 (at a cost of £4000!)