One of the older records is a book of Church Membership which dates back to 1878. From this book we have been able to gather information of the first Pastor.
James Drewitt Alford came to Barrow in May 1896, living at The Chestnuts, Industry Street (now Beveridge Street), probably the home of the Cross family whose address is the same. His wife and daughter are also entered, and a little later in the membership of the same year, a Miss N Alford. The Pastorate did not last long, however, for James died in August 1897, and a gravestone to that effect can be found in the graveyard. In May 1899 the family were transferred to Highgate Park, Birmingham.
In the year 1899 Mr George Wilson commenced His pastorate on 11 October. There were four in the family, his wife and daughters Maud and Hilda, living in Crown Lane (now Cotes Road) - we are not told how long he ministered for he died in 1914.
At a Church Members meeting held or. 16 October 1912, a vote was taken on a Rev I Brook being invited to the Pastorate. Members at the meeting totalled 48 and 46 voted in favour. The minute further states 'proposed by Mr Smith and seconded by J Frier that we accept his offer to come on 10 November, asking him to stay over Monday and have tea when the friends had the pleasure of meeting the Rev Brook.'
On 5 March 1913, the Rev I Brook presided at his first members and congregation meeting. It is interesting to note that it is recorded that the total receipts for the year amounted to £77 17s 8d; less expenditure of £62 6s 5d leaving £15 11s 3d ... treasurer Mr J T Ball. From that 10s 6d was given towards the Nurses Fund. Many thanks were given at that meeting to the treasurer and to Mr Bennett and Mr Lee for audit. J Frier the secretary.
Members meetings were to be held every month on the Wednesday. Trust Deeds to be left in the hands of the Officers for examination and then deposited in the Union safe at London.
No mention is made as to why Rev Brook was transferred (membership book note) but he signed the last minutes on 25 February 1914.
In 1917 Rev Brook was again invited to return as pastor. The church was to give £80 per year towards an annual salary of £130 (remainder being paid the Sustentation Fund, now Home Mission Fund), but in June 1918 Rev Brook declined to accept.
Previous menu page: 4. Opening of first church buildings 1822
Next page: 6. Interesting Information from the First Church Membership Book