A brief history of St Paul's Shadwell


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St Paul's Shadwell is an Anglican church that was first built in 1657. The church had a number of well known members including Captain James Cook and Thomas Jefferson's mother. It became known as the Church of Sea Captains because of its links to the docks and maritime trade and there are over 70 sea captains buried in the grave yard surrounding the church. During this time, John Wesley preached here a number of times and indeed preached his last sermon from the church's pulpit before dying a few days later.


The existing building was built in 1820, following the older church coming into disrepair. It was funded by a large grant from the fund given by parliament to celebrate the victory at the Battle of Waterloo in 1815. The church became one of the "Waterloo Churches".


The church has undergone a number of architectural developments inside, notably by Butterfield in the late nineteenth century, but it has retained its simple, beautiful ambiance, inside and out.


Most recently, the Bishop of London and the Bishop of Stepney, invited Ric Thorpe, and a team from Holy Trinity Brompton in West London, to plant a new congregation in the church to bring new life and a fresh mission. 100 people, from around East London and some moving house from West London, joined Ric, and Associate Pastor Jez Barnes, to start the new work in January 2005.

In 2010, a team from St. Paul's Shadwell went with the Adam Atkinson to re-start St. Peter's, Bethnal Green. In the same year, we sent Chris and Becky Rogers to All Hallows' Bow. Both church plants are now thriving. In January 2013, Ed Dix led a team from St. Paul's to re-start St. Luke's, Millwall.


The congregation is continuing to grow with services at 9.30am, 11am and 6pm. There are mid-week Connect Groups, and the Alpha course for people wanting to explore the Christian faith further.


For a more detailed history of the church and the area, follow the link below.


A detailed history of


St Paul's Shadwell

Captain James Cook

Click here