History of DBC
A piece of land was donated for a small chapel to be built on the main road from Coventry to London, on the parish boundary between Thurlaston and Dunchurch. Due mainly to the zeal and vision of George Jones, the chapel was completed soon after.
The Dunchurch Baptist Church was formed with the Rev John Kitts as its first Pastor.
The church was re-opened after extension and refurbishment had been completed in order to double the seating capacity.
A further piece of land was purchased surrounding the chapel – half an acre in size – part of which was used as a burial ground.
1878 to 1890
The Rev Meadow shared the Ministry for the chapels of Wolston and Dunchurch.
Later, Rugby Baptist Church had oversight of Dunchurch under Rev Lees, who also formed a local lay preacher plan for the village chapels.
Dunchurch commemorated its centenary with special celebrations and thanksgiving services.
1939 to 1945
During the War of 39-45 the Rev Dr Champion of Rugby took oversight of the church. Because of the Blackout, services were held in the afternoon. Three of DBC's young men were called up to serve their country. The small Boys Brigade company continued during those difficult years – they even held their usual summer camps.
Mr Lynn Jones became Lay Pastor in. The young people formed a National Youth Life Company Group with outreach work, and evangelistic meetings were led by campaign evangelists.
By the late 1960s a building fund had been established; the church decided a new, smaller building was required. The crumbling old chapel was taken down and a new concrete building was erected over a two-year period.
The new church was opened on Saturday 19th June 1971 at 7.00pm. Services were conducted by Rev Graham Swiff. New life and growth – a thriving Sunday school and evening service – came from this step of faith taken by local preachers. As the church grew, three Elders were appointed to lead the church.
In October 1979 a further 24ft extension was made to the church, giving three additional rooms for Sunday school and youth work. Services (with Sunday school) were now also held in the morning, with Bible classes in the afternoon.
This year saw a further extension with a long hall at the rear for social gatherings and to accommodate expanding Sunday school and youth work.
The church called Rev Matthew Cooper to be its first full-time Minister for over 100 years. He faithfully served the church and preached God's Word (greatly blessing the church members and friends who serve the Lord here in Dunchurch) for 13 years until the summer of 2006, when he was called to serve in Kings Langley. We were enabled to call Matthew through the vital financial help of Home Mission, and now want to help other small churches and communities in the same way by our contributions to Home Mission. 1993 was also the year Noah's Ark began.
Our Sunday School had outgrown the back hall so we added an extension, comprising a kitchen and three side rooms.
After a pastoral vacancy of two years, Rev Dave Woods began his ministry at DBC on Sunday 31st August 2008. He and his wife Lesley greatly enriched the church's life. During Dave’s ministry Small Groups were developed, and he showed himself a master of comic timing in the annual Holiday Clubs! Dave and Lesley led Alpha courses and Marriage Courses.
The congregation gradually grew and the building gradually needed more and more maintenance so around 2011 we started thinking about the challenge of a new building. There were various possibilities, plans and a few setbacks but by 2017 we had agreed to build a new building on the same site and had architects plans. We received a loan from the Baptist Building Fund and raised funds from donations and through activities. We were very encouraged that Dunchurch Methodist Church were willing to let us hold our services and other activities there during construction and so in Sept 2018 we had our last service in the 1970s building and translocated to DMC. It was very encouraging to see how more funds came in as we went ahead with the process of demolition and construction during the next 3 years so at each step there was enough for the next.
We began running Messy Church sessions this year.
We finally held our first service in the new building on Feb 6th 2022 and are very grateful to God for such a practical and beautiful church.
On May 1st 2022 Rev Dave Woods retired after 14 years of ministry.
We are delighted to be welcoming Rev. Ali Jones to be our new minister, and his wife Gillian in January 2024.
Dunchurch Baptist Church is on the same site that it has been since 1834 and this site includes a historic graveyard with memorial stones dating back to 1867. The majority of these stones have been relocated and grouped together to give room for parking and for a landscaped garden. As a service to genealogists we are including on this website details of the inscriptions and photos of the memorials. All the required legal process was followed before we moved the memorial stones and none have been made inaccessible.
All the graveyard records for Dunchurch Baptist Church, including photos of the memorials, can be found on Find a Grave.