In the mid-19th century, at around the time the Methodist Church in Pett was established, the area was notorious for smuggling. The local coastguards were quite inept at dealing with the smugglers, mostly preferring to turn a blind eye. So, coastguards from the distant West Country were drafted in to deal more vigorously with illicit trading.


Five and twenty ponies,
Trotting through the dark;
Brandy for the parson,
Baccy for the clerk,
Laces for a lady, letters for the spy.
So watch the wall, my darling,
While the gentlemen go by!

(Excerpt from Rudyard Kipling’s Smugglers’ Song)

Rudyard Kipling

Many of these new arrivals belonged to the Bible Christian movement. The first Bible Christian evangelist known of in Pett was a Cornish coastguard named Matthews, stationed at Cliff End. He was a fervent member of the Bible Christian Methodist Connexion, an offshoot of the parent church, and, with the help of others, built a strong group of enthusiastic worshippers.



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Acknowledgement - This page and those that follow in this History section are largely based on research carried out by Derek and Topsy Brice for our 150th anniversary celebration in 1998. We thank Derek and Topsy for allowing us to reproduce their work here.
Copyright Pett Methodist Church
For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son,
that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life  (John 3:16)