AFTER an absence of some 90 years, meetings for worship of the Religious Society of Friends have returned to the Crewe and Nantwich area.

The Quakers are inviting locals to join them at the Coppenhall Methodist Centre, Bradfield Road on the second and fourth Sundays of each month at 3pm.

Despite nearly a century away, clues to the Quaker community’s former presence in the region can be readily found by keen-eyed observers.

“The existence of Quakers can be traced back to the period immediately following the Civil War,” explained treasurer, David McBride.

“In fact, the then vicar of Acton Parish Church complained of Quakers causing a disturbance during a sermon he was delivering, distracting the attention of all present!

“In spite of this, the Quaker community in Nantwich continued to grow, leading to the building of a Meeting House in Nantwich in 1725, which was in use until 1922.

“The original building can still be seen in Nantwich to this day and is now in fact the Nantwich Players’ Theatre. A blue plaque on the side of the building attests to its original purpose.”

The Quaker’s return to Crewe stems from an initiative launched by Reverend Malcolm Lorimer, the superintendant of the Cheshire South Methodist Circuit.

After offering fortnightly use of the chapel in the Poole, the initiative continued to develop until it became necessary to find their larger premises in Crewe.