The Oriental Street Methodist Church was built for the Primitive Methodists in 1884, on the junction of the north side of Oriental Street and Pound Street (later Cannon Street.)
The first Primitive Methodist Chapel in Shirley stood round the corner on the west side of Pound Street a few houses away from the junction with Oriental Street. It may date back to December 1851, when a place of worship was registered in Shirley: there was certainly a chapel here in 1859, when the circuit minutes record a fund-raising tea to cover the expenses of “lighting the chapel with gas.” There was another registration 24 December 1860. The property seems to have been leased from Robert Tasker of Newbury, gent, until 1854, when he sold “all the piece of land in the parish of Millbrook, width £14’ depth 49’ bounded on the North East by a dwelling house and premises leased by George Laishley to James Clements & on the South East by Pound Street, together with the chapel erected thereon.” to Primitive Methodist Trustees for £45. They had asked him what would be “the lowest sum he will accept for the chapel and house adjoining it at Shirley.”
In 1884, they built their new chapel and schoolroom in Oriental Street, which remained in use until the redevelopments of the 1960s. Its membership at Methodist Union in 1932 was 40. The last service took place on 3 July 1960. The circuit plan noted a membership of 24, and recorded that “the Circuit gives thanks to God for all that has, through the years, been accomplished by this Society.” The chapel was registered for marriages 20 August 1919.
The property was sold to Southampton Corporation "for demolition purposes 4th January 1963." The proceeds of £4,000 went towards the extension of Wimpson Methodist Church.

Shirley Oriental Street Church from Oriental Street

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Photograph taken before redevelopment, 1961

The Church from the back

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1961. Also visible, on the left, the back of Shirley Evangelical Free Church in its Nissen hut, occupying approximately the site of the old Pound Street Chapel.


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