The rise and progress of the town and the history of its institutions & people.

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92                         HISTORY OF EAST GRINSTEAD.
late Mr. Thomas Cramp, in May, 1870, and the school buildings to accommodate it, which cost £600, were opened on April 29th, 1874. Mr. Maxwell gave notice of his intention to resign on September 28th, 1875, leaving on November 1st of that year. He was succeeded a year later by the Rev. J. Brantom, whose ministry lasted from September 25th, 1876, to August 24th, 1884. While he was in charge the manse was built at a cost of over £800; a warming apparatus was installed in the church and the existing organ was obtained. The foundation stones of the manse were laid on June 4th, 1878, by Mrs. and Miss Brantom, Mr. T. H. W. Buckley and others, and the house was formally dedicated on November 25th following. The total debt on the manse was liquidated by the end of 1882 and the organ was opened on January 30th, 1884. Mr. Brantom was succeeded, some three months after his departure, by the Rev. J. J. Brooker, who began his ministry on January 3rd, 1886, and resigned on December 2nd, 1891. The Rev. F. J. Austin began his charge of the church on July 3rd, 1892, and continued until March, 1899. Twelve months later the Rev. W. Hipkin under­took the pastorate, preaching his first sermon on April 1st, 1900. He left to go to Canada on July 22nd, 1903. The present minister is the Rev. W. H. Edwards, B.A., whose pastorate dates from May 1st, 1904. Since he has been in charge new and spacious vestries have been added.
The Wesleyan community began operations in East Grinstead on Sunday, April 14th, 1878, when they hired the Public Hall for religious services and continued them until their chapel opposite was ready. The Rev. John Mack started the services. The purchase of land and the erection of chapel and school room cost about £2,800. Two foundation stones were laid, one by Mr. R. W. Perks, who subsequently became M.P. for the South Division of Lincolnshire and President of the Wesleyan Methodist Twentieth Century Million Fund,
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