Bethany History

Bethany Baptist Church, Cardiff

Bethany is known as the first English Baptist Church in Cardiff and was formed in 1806, when, after their baptism in the River Taff, three men met with three friends to worship in a room at the King’s Head Hotel.  Six months later, this little fellowship moved to a nearby stable which soon had to be enlarged to accommodate a congregation of 900 people.

By 1865, Bethany was ready to move into a new building in St. Mary Street and became a flourishing, church in the heart of the city.  From this fruitful mother church many other Baptist churches were planted in the districts of Cardiff.

With such a history of faithful witness, why move out? By the 1940’s and ‘50’s the church building was completely surrounded by shops and offices causing access problems and difficulties in reaching people.  James Howells (now House of Fraser) were anxious to acquire the premises and so, in 1959, the momentous decision was taken, to move out to the fast developing area of Rhiwbina.  In 1964 the ‘new’ Bethany was opened and began to reach out into the neighbourhood where hundreds of new houses were being built.  For Bethany, under God’s guidance this gave wonderful opportunities for growth and attracted many young families from the area.

The original Bethany Church building is still in situ on the House of Fraser premises although presently it is hidden from view.  We have seen plans to develop the area and the these show that the church building will be incorporated and be seen.

Bethany Baptist Church, Cardiff celebrated a 200th anniversary in 2006 and last year we counted up 50 years at our present location in Rhiwbina.

We are still here and the maturing area presents the Church with new Christian missionary challenges. 

Christ continues to build his Church
at Bethany in Rhiwbina and elsewhere.


At Bethany we have recorded a great deal of history about our church.  If you are interested in
church history in Cardiff or have any queries about Bethany's history, please feel free to contact us.