The Heritage Centre showcases the influence of the Methodist church on East Anglia.
Since summer 2023, the Chapel has been repurposed as the East Anglia Methodist Heritage Centre. Find out about the history, development and impact of the Methodist Church in East Anglia over the past two hundred years. The exhibits are themed with artefacts and interpretation focussing on the growth of the church; children and youth work; music; overseas work with a fascinating collection of ceramics, pictures and historic objects. The Heritage Centre houses a reference library of books about the history of Methodism, both nationally and in East Anglia. Visitors can browse an A to Z of chapels with photos, event leaflets, orders of service and other ephemera.
The Heritage Centre, which is accessible, is open on Tuesdays and Fridays from 11 am to 3 pm and is free to visit. Groups visits can be arranged on request.
Donations are welcome. Refreshments and a toilet are available. There is parking alongside the chapel.
The Primitive Methodist Chapel at Wighton, which you can visit today as the East Anglia Methodist Heritage Centre, opened in 1874. There is a history of Methodists in the village from a much earlier date. In fact there is evidence of close links with the Wesleyan Chapel in nearby Walsingham, dating back to 1794. The Primitive branch of the Methodist Church began to grow in East Anglia from 1820 and this is the type of Methodism which was established in Wighton as part of the Fakenham Circuit. It was particular popular amongst the farming community, encouraged temperance and worship often took the form of an outdoor camp meeting with lengthy preaching. The congregation flourished as well as the Sunday School and in its heyday over 120 people regularly worshipped at the chapel. In 1932 the various branches of Methodist came together and thereafter the chapel at Wighton was simply the Methodist church. It continued to serve the people of the village until in 2019 it was decided to merge the congregation with Wells Methodist Church and the Wighton building was no longer used for worship.
Tuesdays and Fridays 11 am to 3 pm. Last opening date 2023 is Friday 27 October. The Heritage Centre will re-open at Easter 2024
- Wheelchair accessible