The congregation at Kingswood Meeting House, Hollywood, were honoured to be visited by HRH the Duke of Gloucester on Thursday 12th March 2009.
Also in attendance were the Mayor of Bromsgrove, and Mrs. Joyce Ashworth, President of the General Assembly of Unitarian & Free Christian Churches.
The Lord Lieutenant of Worcestershire and his wife accompanied the Duke.
The visit was to mark the 300 year witness of Kingswood Meeting House. The congregation was founded in May 1708, with the original chapel being opened in April 1709.
The Duke was able to meet Committee and Trustees of the Chapel, the volunteers who tend the grounds, the choir and organist, Women’s League members, WI members, and the leaders of Kingswood’s young people’s groups (Boy’s Brigade, Rainbows, Brownies and Guides).
He spent some time looking at a historical display created by Kingswood’s archivist Ms. Nina Caddick, and went on to enjoy a drink and a slice of cake whilst chatting with various members of the congregation.
The visit was originally planned to be 35 minutes long, but in the event the Duke was able to stay for nearly an hour. This extra time meant that he was able to take an extended tour of the grounds, as well as to hear the choir give an impromptu performance.
Before leaving, the Duke was presented with a limited edition medal, which has been cast especially to mark Kingswood’s Tercentenary. He also unveiled a stone tablet which is to be situated in the Chapel. The tablet contains the names of the Ministers who have served Kingswood during its 300 year history.