Dr. Sangster used to say that Margate was a nice place to pass through. I thought the same about Eton Wick when I came to live at Windsor and took my first bicycle ride to Burnham Beeches. When the old Eton Bridge was open to traffic, I could cycle from Windsor to Eton Wick in eight minutes.
Through coming on to the Methodist preaching plan I found I
had to terminate my journey at Eton Wick. It was wartime. Most of the young men
were away. I was too young, though I eventually joined the Home Guard and two
At that time there was a group of teenage youngsters at Eton
Wick. There was also a lady called Sylvia Chew, who I considered to be very
gracious, and who called the kids together on a Friday night. It was called a
fellowship, though most of the attenders were girls. Today I suppose you would
call it a House Group. For some reason I attached myself to this group. There
was something rather unique about it, and one could learn so much about the
Christian faith in so short a time.
Most people will know that Eton Wick is a favourite port of
call for local preachers. In earlier times the pulpit was conveniently
centralised so that one could see the whole congregation. Now one operates from
the corner, sometimes using the raised platform, sometimes not. But there is
still that "specialness" about your Church. Its people are not
reluctant to pray, and the atmosphere remains warm and friendly. Harry Carter,
another local preacher, used to say: "You'll have a good time at Eton
Wick." I didn't like the phrase, but I knew what he meant. The loving
attention and attitude of the congregation always assisted the preacher so
My first preaching appointment at Eton Wick was on January
30th 1944. Your membership has doubled since that date. May you
continue to grow in strength and into the avenue of God's Kingdom and may this
anniversary year give you good heart for the great times still to come. And may
you never lose that special warmth which makes a visit so pleasurable.
The Eton Wick History Group is most grateful for the kind permission given by the Eton Wick Methodist Chapel to republish this history, Tough Assignment on this website.
This is the final excerpt from Tough Assignment. The original published price when it was published in 1986 was £1.95.