United Reformed Church 350th anniversary, Axminster

THE United Reformed Church in Axminster will celebrate its 350th anniversary with a thanksgiving service on Saturday, July 31.

The church, in Chard Street, will hold the service at 3.45pm, followed by tea in the hall.

On Sunday, August 1, a service will be held by Reverend David Grosch-Miller at 10.30am.

• Bartholemew Ashwood become the Vicar of Axminster in 1660 and gathered people to read and study the Bible. Their meetings later became illegal and they met in secret in houses, woods and fields.

• In 1688, with the removal of James II from the throne, an Act of toleration for dissenters was passed. Congregations then met at Weycroft and were able to acquire land to build their first meeting house in Jun 1998.

• The present Church hall stands on the site of the original meeting house and was built in 1828.