Wesley memories as building set for a new lease of life

The Wesley Chapel pictured at the turn of the century.

The Wesley Chapel pictured at the turn of the century.

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As plans are revealed to turn the former Wesley chapel building into a hotel Tom Collins looks back at the history of the town centre building.

Many Hartlepool couples were married at the chapel over the years with a red carpet laid down the steps for their special day and many local groups using the attached school room for their activities.

Gray Peverell & Co. Ltd on the left with the Wesley Chapel in the distance.

Gray Peverell & Co. Ltd on the left with the Wesley Chapel in the distance.

Sadly the landmark building closed its hymn books and doors for the last time in August 1973.

Since then there have been plans to demolish the Grade II listed building to provide car parking for the Grand Hotel and in 1986 there were even plans to demolish the chapel brick by brick and rebuild it at Beamish Museum and rumours of a plan to dismantle it and ship it off to Bath by barge for a proposed project in the West Country city.

Fortunately, in the early 1990s, after many years of neglect and vandalism the building was transformed into ‘The Wesley’ nightclub and leisure complex complete with swimming pool and on the ground floor was the Emporium pub.

Sadly this venture closed in recent years but now developers Jomast are converting the building into a 49-bedroom hotel which will hopefully secure the future of the build ing for many years to come.