St Luke's Prestonville

Exeter Street Church Hall

By Jennifer Drury

St Luke's Sunday School opened in Brigden Street in 1877.

In 1884 the St Luke's Exeter Street Hall was built at a cost of £1,799. It is a red-brick Gothic building with the separate boys' and girls' entrances to the Sunday school still apparent.

Photo:Undated interior photograph of the Exeter Street Church Hall

Undated interior photograph of the Exeter Street Church Hall

From the private collection of St Luke's Prestonville

Photo:St Luke's Church Hall: Exeter Street

St Luke's Church Hall: Exeter Street

Photo by Tony Mould

This page was added on 26/08/2010.
Comments about this page

I remember Friday nights in the Hall in the early 1960s - I was a 'Lifeboy' under the Captaincy of Sally Sartain. When the parade was over it was a quick run to the Fish & Chip shop on the corner of Upper Hamilton Road/Stafford Road for a bag of chips (plus if you were lucky the crisp bits of batter left from the frying fish). Little did I know at that time that my path would cross with that of the Hall again in the 1970s when my Mother became the Caretaker of the Hall and we moved into the house adjacent (No18?) The family occupied the flat upstairs; the lower floor being a connecting link and extension of the Hall. I believe that Reverend David (?) Town was incumbant at that time. Prior to his being in office, I believe it was Reverend Gray - but it was a long time ago.

By Adrian Elliott (03/09/2010)

The fish and chip shop Adrian went to was at the corner of Upper Hamilton Road and Buxton Road. It was called Messengers owned by Mac Messenger who lived in a road off Holland Road, Hove. I went there with his niece Pamela. In the 50s St Luke's church hall had a Boys Brigade and lifeboys and used to hold sale of works by parishners for church funds. On Friday nights in 1957 they used to have a teenage club called the Quest Club where we used to play badminton and listen to the latest pop music played on a Dansett record player up in the balcony. The caretaker who lived next door sadly went blind and his daughter Betty and he looked after the hall. Betty worked at Hilders, a grocery shop on the corner of Exeter Street and Port Hall Street. Hilders also had a shop at the corner of Coventry Street and Upper Hamilton Road. The Boys Brigade and lifeboys used to have a display every year that was always well attended.

By Terry Hyde (21/08/2011)

At some time (perhaps around 1947) I was a choirboy at St Luke's. At that time the Reverend Gray was the parish priest of the church and the organist was a Mr Marchant. I was there with Miss Fielding who has long passed away. I often sang solo and sometimes with Michael Cowley. We came from the local orphanage called "Furze Court" opposite Hazeldeans nursery which grew flowers of all kinds for sale. I remember also going on a church outing with all the choir and I believe a movie film was made of that event (perhaps 1947-1949), however what happened to the film taken by the Reverend Gray. Whether or not it was archived, kept or passed on by him to another person or persons I do not know. I am sure that someone interested in the historical and social domain of St Luke's would love to see this keepsake as much as I would. I did however sing at St Luke's as a choirboy until I left "Furze Court" around the year of 1953. It would be nice to hear If anyone was at or attending St Luke's at that time. St Luke's was at least for me one of the best second homes that I have ever had and I enjoyed and looked forward to singing in its choir.

By Dr Ronald Michael Wildego (19/02/2012)

It's fantastic hearing all your stories about the Hall. You might not be aware but the Church is now putting the Hall up for sale. In order for future generations to create their own stories a community group called TheHallGetInvolved is trying to buy it as a resident-owned and managed Hall. To find out more information go to www.exeterstreethall.org or email getinvolved@exeterstreethall.org to see how you can get involved. Please spread the word to anyone else you know who might have used the Hall in the past. We would love to hear more stories.

By Claire Hunns (29/03/2012)

Remember the hall, was a lifeboy and then a member of The Happy Ninth, Boy's Brigade Company. Captains of the company included Stan Spratt, Micky Belton, and Chap from Hassocks, Young I think. Went on to be a Warrant Officer of the company.

The hall has now been bought by the community and are in the process of renovating it.

 

By David Simmonds (30/04/2016)

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