Timeline for St. John’s

1826   Thomas Baily built East Dulwich Chapel as a chapel-of-ease in the ancient parish of St. Giles, Camberwell. It stood on the corner of Tintagel Crescent, opposite Goose Green. The Revd. Matthew Anderson was appointed as Priest-in-Charge.

1839   A new school was built at Troy Town to replace the infant day school which had met in the basement of East Dulwich Chapel. It became known as the East Dulwich and Peckham Rye National School.

1861   A Church Building Committee was formed to fundraise for a new church building to serve the growing population of East Dulwich.

1863   St. John’s foundation stone was laid by the Rt. Hon. Sir Charles Jasper Selwyn PC, QC.

1865   St. John’s Church was dedicated on 16th May by Charles Richard Sumner, Bishop of Winchester.

1872   St. John’s School moved to Northcross Road.

1883   Maxted Road Mission was opened in a private house.

1902   St. Andrew’s Mission Church was opened.

1906   The Revd. Arthur Eglinton gave evidence to the Royal Commission on Ecclesiastical Discipline in answer to accusations of ritualism in St. John’s liturgy and practice.

1908   The foundation stone of the Church of the Epiphany, Bassano Street, was laid. It had begun as a Children’s Church in the schools in Northcross Road a few years earlier.

1914   The vestry was built on to the church.

1917   Pew rents were abolished at St. John’s and all seats were free to use.

1920   The first Parochial Church Council was set up.

1921   The Calvary War Memorial was dedicated in memory of those men of the parish who had given their lives in the First World War.

1927   Services ceased to be held at Epiphany Church but the building continued to be used for Sunday School and social events.

1932   St. Andrew’s Mission Church fell out of use. The building was sold in 1948 to help finance the re-building of St. John’s.

1939   St. John’s School was renamed St. John and St. Clement’s School.

1940   Walnut Tree Villa in Ady’s Road was acquired as St. John’s Vicarage.

1940   St. John’s church building was severely damaged by enemy bombing on the nights of 19th October and 8th December. Wartime services from then on were held in Epiphany Church.

1951   Bertram Simpson, Bishop of Southwark, once a choirboy at St. John’s, re-dedicated the restored St. John’s on 5th May.

1954   The West Gallery was erected to house the organ and choir.

1972-1994   St. John’s Children’s Week. This was started by the Revd. James Atwell to provide a week of fun and activities for children during the summer school holidays.

Revd. Dilly Baker

1989   Rosemary Shaw, a longstanding member of St. John’s was ordained deacon in Southwark Cathedral. The Revd. Dilly Baker was appointed as St. John’s first female curate.

1993   An appeal fund was set up to build the Goose Green Centre for Church and Community as a response to the “Faith in the City” report.

1994   St. John and St. Clement’s School moved to Ady’s Road.

1996   The Goose Green Centre for Church and Community was dedicated by Roy Williamson, Bishop of Southwark, and opened by the Rt. Hon. Tessa Jowell, MP.

2003-2005   A major project took place to repair the church spire and renew the electrical wiring.

2011   A new organ, on long-term loan from Trinity Laban Conservatoire of Music and Dance in Greenwich, was installed in a former chapel on the south side of the church.

2015   St. John’s 150th Anniversary was celebrated with a High Mass celebrated by Christopher Chessun, Bishop of Southwark.

2016   The Revd. Gill O’Neill was appointed Vicar of St. John’s.

2017   St. John’s became involved in the Robes Project for the first time, joining a rota of churches offering space to sleep and a hot meal for a group of homeless people one night a week.

St John’s Church today