Welcome to Our Historic Church!


Welcome to Our Historic Church!   

Situated on Fornham Road, in Bury St. Edmunds, this building is over 104 years old. 

It is a Grade 2 Listed Building and was (and stillis) fondly known as “The Tin Tabernacle.” For Tin Tabernacles, go to – http://www.TinTabernacles.com 

Built as a Railway Mission Hall, it was used for that purpose for over 90 years.

For further information about the Railway Mission, go to – http://www.railwaymission.org 

The Railway Mission Hall – Information Gloria Abbott.

Funds to construct the Hall were raised by railwaymen and the community. A hall to seat two hundred people was built by Mr W. Hartrow, (Iron Building Worker, South Bermondsey) from corrugated iron with varnished matchboard lining and with matching forms for seating. It was opened officially on Tuesday, 20th May 1900, by his worship the Mayor, Councillor Thomas Shillitoe. Many local town and church dignitaries were present;

By April 1901 the total cost, including furnishings, of £360-15s-2d, had been covered. 

In 1903 the Hall was extended by 10 ft. And a 30 ft. Addition was built on the end for a Sunday School. The debt for this was cleared in 1905.

At the commencement of World War I, the Mission folk opened the building as a “Soldier's Rest” from 5:30 to 6:30 am and 4 to 10 pm each day. Refreshments were sold and writing materials provided in a quiet, peaceful atmosphere. The soldiers who were billeted in the homes around had to meet at “The Rink” opposite (the site of the present Tesco supermarket) to collect rations and for drill etc. and the much appreciated this gesture.

The seating, donated by the people of Westgate Church, when they refurbished their building, has replaced the old forms. Infra-red overhead heating has replaced the old coke stove. (The concrete base for the stove can still be seen on the left side of the Hall.) Ceiling fans give movement of air in hot weather.

It later became the Fornham Road Free Church (See Later History of the Hall.)

In 2002 it became an Adventist Church and has recently been extensively renovated and rededicated.