James Christopher Street 1864 – 1870

Rev. J. C. Street

After the disappointment of Newton, the congregation fixed on J C Street from Manchester, who began his ministry on 24th April 1864. He started a Fellowship Society and secured a band of lay preachers and two home missionaries to continue missionary work in the area begun by Rev. H W Crosskey and Rev. Wm Gaskell. When a third missionary was appointed, new chapels were soon built in both Choppington and South Shields (both since closed in the 20th century). Street also threw himself into the public life of the district, investigating the slums of the town. He published his work in a pamphlet called “The Night Side of Newcastle”. (We would love to trace a copy of it!). He published sermons and pamphlets including one which was a rebuttal of an attack on Unitarianism as the “Halfway House to Infidelity”. In December 1870 he accepted an invitation to a congregation in Belfast. His leaving was marked by a testimonial from the Northumberland and Durham Missionary Association, which contained engravings of both New Bridge Street and Choppington churches, and which was engraved by Mark W Lambert, a professional engraver and a member of the congregation.