A Christian Socialist, William Paton was known in West Ham as a 'politician, organiser, and above all as an outstanding orator.' He came to Silvertown as a Christian minister in 1934 and quickly became socially and politically active.
Frank Lenwood was pastor of Plaistow Congregational Church from 1926 to 1934. Lenwood Hall in Coronation Road, built in 1957, is named for him.
Dynamic, on the move, always in his clerical 'dog-collar' Jimmy Froud became part of the Newham Story for 40 hectic years between 1961-2003.
Wood Plaque from the Memorial Chapel dedicated to Stewart Smyth, Th. AKCL (Theology Associate Kings College London) He is in the 1896 & 1902 Kellys directory at St Marks Vicarage Victoria Dock. It is likely that this was a side chapel in St Marks dedicated to his memory.
Part of Newham Heritage & Archives collection
The following was spoken by Mr John Skipsey, first headmaster of the East Ham School Board recounting his first vist to East Ham. This was recorded by Councillor Alfred Stokes Mayor of East Ham 1921 -22, when he visited his old school - High Street School - during his mayoralty. Mr Skipsey and Rev S H Reynolds became firm friends.
"The first time I came to East Ham was 47 years ago to-day. I was the only passenger who got out at the station [East Ham], and Mr Gingell, of Wood House, near by, was the only passenger to get into the train. As I walked down rural High Street between hedgerows, the sun was shining over the green fields, although it was December, and Barking Church was a conspicuous object a mile away to the left.
The only vehicle I passed was a ramshackle pony and trap. We all knew whose property they were. He was a very reverend gentleman we afterwards knew well, as every recurring season he brought footballs and cricket gear to the schools, to the huge satisfaction of the scholars. Yes, he was a very reverend gentleman, beloved by all who really knew him, and to those his name is a sacred memory to-day - the Rev. S H Reynolds, Vicar of East Ham."
Rev Reynolds was Vicar of St Mary Magdalene, (parish church of East Ham) from 1871 to 1893. He was noted for his learing, was leader-writer to The Times and reputed to be one of the five most learned Englishmen of his time. Mr Gladstone, the Prime Minister being one of the other four.
Rev. Reynolds played a full part in the life of the High Street Schools. Often he would have a book in his pocket to give as a prize to a pupil who had obtained top marks in a subject. Among others, he was instumental in securing Plashet Recreation Ground (now Plashet Park) towards which he managed to obtain a grant of £3,000 from the City Parochial Trustees.
The Rev. John Emblem Minister of Brickfields chapel (1810-40), which opened in 1776 at Brickfields, then open land off Jackass (now Vicarage) Lane.
Newham Heritage & Archives Ref AL-44
A Congregational Minister, musicologist and publisher. John Curwen (1816-1880) founded the Tonic-Sol-Fa College of Music in Earlham Grove and built Workington House on the Romford Road where he lived from 1869 until his death.
Photo: Newham Heritage & Archives