Ainsdale Village Church

A warm and welcoming Christian community
in the heart of Ainsdale Village.

FOUNDATION

AINSDALE CONGREGATIONAL CHURCH (1878 - 1973)

Ainsdale Congregational church was founded in the mid 1800's. The original premises was above the old Bank (What was, until recently Royal Bank of Scotland) but in 1878 the current building was constructed...

The first minister of the new church was the Reverend Samuel France. Going off the limited documentations within the archives, it would appear that he was appointed as minister after the opening of the new church, therefore it is unknown who, if anyone, led the church prior to 1878. Reverend Samuel France acted as minister of the church until 1885. On 24th February 1888, whilst holidaying in New Amsterdam (now New York), aged 35, the Reverend became ill and after a short illness died. A plaque is located in the current sanctuary honouring him.
There is no information on the ministers following, however, Reverend J.S Drummond, whose tenure took the church through the first world war,  lost his son Corporal Alan Drummond within his first year of service to the church. 
Nearer the closing of his tenure, Reverend Drummond began sharing his role of preacher with a 17 year old sunday scholar, Ronald Hardy. 

AINSDALE UNITED REFORMED CHURCH (1973 - 2014) (Worshiping with Cornerstone Baptist Church since 2008)

In 1973, the congregational and presbyterian churches joined together as one church. This was a national merger, therefore Ainsdale Congregational Church became Ainsdale United Reformed Church. Prior to the joining, Reverend Walter Lazenby led the congregation through the change and into the new era. Shortly after the merger's success and the settlement of the congregation, Reverend Lazenby retired from the ministry, therefore marking the merger as his swan song. 

Following the departure of Reverend Brian Acty in 1993, the church found itself in a poor state. A dwindling congregation, a small amount of church elders and no minister...all hope seemed lost. Fortunately, in early 1994, God provided the answer. Reverend Robert Shallcross arrived at the church, previously minister at Formby U.R.C, he was able to alternate his time between the two churches. Reverend Shallcross saw the church through some major changes. One of which was the redevelopment of the church garden. What was once a patch of wasteland, became a thing of beauty. 
In 2007/2008 the church found itself in a position that could result in closure, again the congregation prayed and Reverend Shallcross continued to lead them through the dark. In 2008, Cornerstone Baptist Church made the decision to close their doors and combine with another church...after much discussion and rejecting the United Reformed Church, the leaders of the church as well as the driving force of Reverend Shallcross made the decision to combine. 
It took a few months for the two church congregations to settle, but they soon did. However, during the merger, Reverend Shallcross had been called to take care of three struggling churches in Liverpool and departed in 2009. His successor, Reverend Peter Lyth stepped in and saw the merger through. 

AINSDALE VILLAGE CHURCH (2014 - Present)

After 8 years of being joined, Ainsdale United Reformed church officially and legally joined with Cornerstone Baptist Church, forming the presently named Ainsdale Village Church. In 2014, the legal papers were signed and a special service was held in the church. The service was led by U.R.C Moderator Reverend Jackie Embry, as well as Baptist Moderator, Reverend Phill Jump. Present were members of both churches, both past and present, with the warm invitations extended to Reverend Shallcross and Cornerstone leaders Ralph and Margaret Gower.

MINISTERS OF YEARS GONE BY

Reverend Samuel France

Reverend Frederick Smith

Reverend J.W McEwan

Reverend Gibson Deauville

Reverend B. Hargreaves

Reverend James Siddall Drummond

Reverend Frederick William Nicholson

Reverend John Bather Herring

Reverend Frederick William Nicholson

Reverend Wiliam John Leslie Paxton 

Reverend David Arthur Haries

Reverend Frederick William Richard Lines

Reverend Walter Cecil Lazenby

Reverend William Wright

Reverend Stuart Jackson

Reverend Wilson Morris

Reverend Brian Acty

Reverend Robert Shallcross

Reverend Peter Lyth

1878 to 1885

1885 to 1891

1891 to 1894

1894 to 1913

1913 to 1915

1915 to 1920

1920 to 1928

1928 to 1933

1933 to 1944

1944 to 1949

1949 to 1953

1953 to 1962

1962 to 1973

1973 to 1982

1982 to 1990

1984 to 1989

1990 to 1993

1994 to 2009

2009 to Present












Inducted on Tuesday, April 13th 1954 (7:00pm)

Inducted on Wednesday, June 12th 1963 (7:30pm)

HISTORY THROUGH PICTURES