The Synod of the Northern Province of the United Reformed Church held its inaugural meeting on 14 October 1972 at Jesmond (formerly Presbyterian Church)  – just over a week after the Uniting Service held in Westminster Abbey brought together the Congregational Church in England and Wales and the Presbyterian Church of England.  The meeting was followed by a service in celebration of the inauguration of the United Reformed Church at St James’s, Newcastle (former Congregational Church). 

The Synod was formed from the Durham & Northumberland Congregational Union, together with some churches from the Cumberland District of the Lancashire Congregational Union and the Harrogate District of the Yorkshire Congregational Union, and the Presbyteries of Berwick, Northumberland, Newcastle, Durham and Carlisle. 

1662 Great Ejectment – some presbyteries operated intermittently and clandestinely in the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries 

1806 Lancashire Congregational Union formed 

1822 Durham & Northumberland Congregational Union formed 

1872 Yorkshire Congregational Union formed 

1896 Presbytery of Durham formed from parts of the presbyteries of Newcastle and Darlington 

1972 Synod formed, divided into Northumberland, Newcastle, Durham, Teesside & North Riding, and Cumberland Districts
Synod Office established at St James’s, Newcastle 

1981 Congregations from the Glasgow, Fife & Dundee, Edinburgh and North-East Districts of the Re-formed Association of Churches of Christ joined; Mid-Scotland District created 

1996 Synod Office moved to 65 Westgate Road, Newcastle, during refurbishment of St James’s 

2000 Mid-Scotland churches joined a new Synod of Scotland; Durham and Teesside Districts merged together 

2003 Synod Office moved back to St James’s, this time at the rear of the building 

2004 South East Northumberland Ecumenical Area created from parts of Newcastle and Northumberland Districts and Morpeth and South East Northumberland Methodist Circuits;
Cumberland churches joined North Western Synod;
Northumberland, Newcastle and Durham & Teesside Districts suspended for a trial period and replaced by mission partnerships 

2008 Northumberland, Newcastle and Durham & Teesside Districts merged into a single North East District for purely legal purposes 


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