A BARRY church is closing after almost 60 years of serving the community.
Crossway Methodist Church, on the corner of Crossways Street and Court Road in Barry, held its first service on September 2, 1962.
The final service will be held on Sunday, March 20, 2022, at 4pm.
Rev William Fulton was the first minister at the church – an amalgamation of Holton Road and Court Road Methodist churches – which is a title now held by Rev Catherine Brobbey.
She said the closure is due – partially – to the impact of the Covid pandemic, along with social, economic, and community changes.
Rev Brobbey said: “Over the years Crossway has been home to a congregation which has had a strong tradition of worship and fellowship and an active social life.
“It has also been home to a host of charities, choirs, youth groups and playgroups. Some of these did not return after Covid restrictions were relaxed.
“We have experienced the loss of some members – for various reasons – in the last two years – this, combined with the lack of members able to take up office in the church, has affected the church’s ability to continue.”
She added that many people’s social lives are no longer centred on church, and Sundays have changed – with shops remaining open and TV and sport impacting church life.
“Nevertheless, Crossway has always tried to be a welcoming church, committed and faithful,” she added.
One committed member is Bryan Ashmead who has played the organ at Crossway Methodist Church for half a century.
Mr Ashmead said: “I have so many happy memories of Crossway, not least when ITV recorded a service here as part of its Raised Voices series.
“We had to stop halfway through due to a tremendous thunderstorm. I was reminded of that again during the recent Storm Eunice.
“I have enjoyed playing the organ at Crossway, but it has come to a natural end. We now look to the future.”
The final service – on Sunday, March 20, at 4pm – will be a celebration of Crossway Methodist Church.