John Wesley’s New Room in Broadmead Bristol, is the Oldest Methodist Building in the world. It’s the place where John Wesley founded Methodism right here in on the Horsefair. But since then the New Room itself, it has become so much more.
It’s easy to miss John Wesley’s New Room, nestled in the heart of a bustling Broadmead. But over the last few years, it’s become not just a chapel, but a community space, cultural venue, museum and cafe, whilst also retaining a sense of tranquillity and being a centre for Methodism.
The New Room also acts a film location, with popular TV series Poldark transforming the chapel into a court room.
The museum upstairs is surprisingly hands on in places, with information quite accessibly presented and capturing the imagination.
Conveying the history of both John and Charles was done in bite-sized chunks, stopping it from becoming overwhelming or dry.
John Wesley was a man surprisingly ahead of his time, which gives opportunities for reflection on equalities and horrors, such as the display of the transatlantic slave trade, a huge and terrible part of Bristol’s history and success, to which he was strongly opposed and campaigned for abolition.
And if history and religion is not your thing, it’s a glorious break from Broadmead and home to a fantastic cafe. Throughout the year, cultural events including music, theatre, events and performance also takes place in the spaces around the building.
For more information about the New Room, visit: https://www.newroombristol.org.uk/