St James's Church

Please note that this text is an extract from a reference work written in 1990.  As a result, some of the content may not reflect recent research, changes and events.

d) ST JAMES’S CHURCH: This church once stood on the site of the Brighton Co-operative Society’s store at the corner of Chapel Street . It was built as a chapel of ease to St Nicholas’s in 1810-13 on land granted by Nathaniel Kemp. However, the proposed curate was not approved of by the Vicar of Brighton, Dr James Carr, and the chapel was used instead by Dissenters, including Kemp’s nephew Thomas Read Kemp in 1816-7. In 1817 the church was purchased by Nathaniel Kemp himself and he then had it consecrated by the Anglican Church; in 1826 it finally did become a chapel of ease. In 1866 St James’s was acquired by the Tractarian Revd James Purchas who reopened it with such an ornate ceremony that the Bishop of Chichester prohibited Purchas from preaching there in 1867 for a year. When Purchas died in 1872 though, the chapel was bought by the Vicar of Brighton, Dr John Hannah, and was rebuilt in 1874-5 in Early English style by Edmund Scott. Faced in flint with stone dressings, it was approached along a passageway from St James’s Street but was demolished in September 1950 with some fittings removed to St Mary’s . {1,3,6,62,115}

Any numerical cross-references in the text above refer to resources in the Sources and Bibliography section of the Encyclopaedia of Brighton by Tim Carder.

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