A METHODIST church is to close after almost 90 years of worship.

East End Methodist Church in Corfe Mullen will close after its final service on Sunday, February 23, 10.30am.

The building, opened in 1927, needs extensive refurbishment which its small congregation would be unable to fund.

The Rev Gwyneth Owen, minister of Wimborne Methodist Church and superintendent minister of the Christchurch and Wimborne circuit, said the final service would celebrate all that had been achieved at the church.

“The building is in need of major refurbishment which is beyond the small number of members who we’re attracting to that church,” she said.

“There are enough people to keep the church going but not to do the refurbishment work, which is upward of £60,000.

“Nationally, the Methodist Church is encouraging us to look carefully at how we best use local resources including the number of Methodist church premises that are in relatively close proximity to each other.”

She said the church still enjoyed a host of activities including a thriving craft group which attracted non-worshippers.

The “stalwart congregation” numbered around 10-12 and often met in each others’ homes.

“I think the fellowship of the church will continue in some form and some of the stuff that the church did will still continue in Corfe Mullen,” she said.

She added: “Our Christian faith is the important thing. The bottom line is that the church, however well occupied, is the building.

“It’s the people that make up the live witness of the Christian faith.”