Baptists first began to meet together in the mid-1650s, generally in the homes of their members.
In the early 1700s they joined with other Dissenters and began meeting on the present site of New Road Baptist Church. The members issued a ground-breaking Church Covenant in 1780, describing themselves as ‘a Protestant Catholic Church of Christ’.
In 1798 a new two-storey building was erected. This forms the core of the church building as it now stands. Major enlargements and improvements to the building took place in 1819 (at which point the pillars and architrave on the front of the church were added) and again in 1982 when the striking central cross was installed. The developments of 1982 included the creation of a suite of rooms extending over four floors and the creation of a “coffee shop” in what was formerly the Royal Mint.
More information on this cross and some of the other sanctuary art can be found in this leaflet.
More information on pictures of the chapel from the 19th century can be found in this leaflet.
The chapel is a grade II listed building.
Most recently, in 2008 the forecourt of the church was opened to form part of the new Bonn Square development project, placing the church at the heart of one of Oxford’s public squares.
Our Covenant of 1780 can be found here.