Havelock Memorial Chapel

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Havelock Memorial Chapel, Agra Cantonment

History

From an article in the Illustrated London News 1875

The Havelock Chapel has been erected by voluntary subscriptions, and bears the name of Sir Henry Havelock, who built the first Baptist chapel in Agra in 1832. This memorial chapel was built in 1873 by the exertions of the Baptist missionary at present stationed in Agra, the Rev. Gelson Gregson. The chapel, including furniture, has cost 12,000 rupees, and is one of the most complete soldiers' chapels in India. The church and congregation who assemble here consist of persons of all denominations. In addition to the chapel there is a large reading room and library for the use of the soldiers of the garrison. Mr Thomas Cook, the well-known tourists' conductor, whose portrait is kept here, collected and forwarded a valuable library of nearly one thousand volumes, which is called the Havelock Library. The extreme length of the building is 105ft, and it is 50ft broad. It differs somewhat from the ordinary construction of Indian buildings. It has enclosed verandahs, which are paved with red and white sandstone and are used as aisles. The main building is supported inside by six light Gothic arches; the roof is of corrugated iron; the interior is extremely light and plain. The pulpit is a handsome piece of Agra stonework, with stone handrails on each side. Among the contributors to the building-fund are the Viceroy, the Lieutenant-Governor of the North-West Provinces, and the present Sir Henry Havelock, Bart., with many other distinguished officers, who take a deep interest of the welfare of soldiers in India. The soldiers of the 13th Regiment contributed liberally towards the first chapel, and the soldiers of the 65th have given with equal generosity towards the present memorial chapel. There is a debt left on the building, which might be soon liquidated by those who still honour the memory of Havelock as a true soldier and true Christian. No memorial could be more in sympathy with his life than the Agra Havelock Memorial Chapel.

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