East Ham Baptist Church
East Ham Baptist Church is situated in Plashet Grove, East Ham, a mainly residential area of the London Borough of Newham, United Kingdom.

History
In 1895 the London Baptist Association (LBA) promoted services in East Ham, then a fast growing dormitory suburb. A temporary iron building at the corner of Katherine Road and Victoria Avenue housed the first congregation. R. Sloven became the first minister from 1896-1908. In 1901 the congregation moved to a new building in Plashet Grove with a 1000 seater sanctuary, surrounded by halls and rooms. By 1903, membership was 972, one of the strongest in the then East Ham Borough. In 1908, Charles Howe led a team of East Ham members to start Bonny Downes Baptist Church situated in the southern part of East Ham. He stayed there for 53 years! Worship, preaching, programmes and activities continued under the leadership of F. Williams from 1909”“1919 and then returning from 1925-1929 after the ministry of F.C.Buck (1919”“1924). But the church weakened after World War 1 (1914”“1918), World War 2 (1939”“1945) and population movement. The slow decline of the 1930s accelerated during the 1939-1945 war and continued inexorably through a succession of ministers and then lay pastors. Membership was 228 in 1941 and only 52 in 1951.

Modern congregation
Humphrey Vellacott came in 1967. His first morning congregation was 6, and 14 people in the evening. He left 100 members, a morning congregation of 150-200, evening 70-80, and a prayer and bible study of 50-60 of 'converts or restored back sliders' and a reshaped building and a team of young ministers working in East London Baptist churches. With the surrounding population changing fast through immigration, particularly from Africa and Asia, the congregation became multi-racial but continued to record a steady 100 membership from the 1980s into the 2000s. Roy Scarsbrook, joined and followed Humphrey Vellacott in September 1993 staying until August 2000, emphasising evangelism and eventually becoming one of a group of supported overseas missionaries, as he went to Poland. Tony Watts, a New Zealander, came initially for a six-month interim pastorate but stayed to 2008, and faced a transient situation within a multi-faith, multi-racial environment. After a year without a minister, Jeremiah Dawood is the current minister of the church who took up this post in May 2009. The mission statement of the church is : "East Ham Baptist Church is a multicultural, mission-focussed church. We seek to build up the body of Christ by encouraging and equipping the members to find and exercise their gifts, and through this to touch the community both at home and abroad with the love of Christ."

List of Past Ministers

Notes and references

Name Dates R. Sloven 1896”“1908 F. Williams 1909”“1919 F.C. Buck 1919”“1924 F. Williams 1925”“1929 Humphrey Vellacott 1967”“1985 Roy Scarsbrook 1993”“2000 Tony Watts 2000”“2008 Jeremiah Dawood 2009 -