Local Quaker History

In 1911, with the assistance of Joseph Rowntree, Acomb Friends purchased the present Meeting House on the Green from the Primitive Methodists (who had built it in 1824), at a cost of £200; alterations and furnishings came to a further £240. At that time, Quakers had been meeting at the Adult School in ‘New Building’, York Road, Acomb since 1905.

Having been given the status of an Allowed Meeting in 1914, Acomb only became a full Preparative (now Local) Meeting in 1983. A small meeting, it initially struggled to survive; morning Meeting for Worship (MfW) was laid down (i.e. not held) between 1929 and 1933, and evening MfW in 1939 (due to black-out restrictions during the bombing in World War 2).

Acomb Meeting has always been involved with the local community; from 1937 to 1950, for example, the Meeting House became a public library on weekdays, and the premises are still let out to various groups today. We’ve also supported Carols on the Green, handing out hot chocolate and mince pies at the finish of the service, and we’re in close contact with other religious organisations in Acomb. Acomb Meeting has been active in York Area Meeting through the years, too, from Quaker Quest (an outreach activity) to involvement in campaigns such as the movement for same-sex marriage legislation. We continue our commitment to Quaker principles by supporting Refugee Action York, and collecting for other charities.

History is of course ever-evolving, and the story of Acomb Meeting is still being written.