The area around Tiptree has long been associated with what became known as the English Dissenters; Christians who separated from the Church of England in the 16th, 17th and 18th centuries. The sad account of the martyrdom of men from nearby Wigborough in 1555 is recorded in Foxe’s Book of Martyrs. Most of the Puritan ministers were driven from the Church of England following the Uniformity Act,1662, and it is understood that in this area, ejected clergy resorted to preaching in local woods.
Following these developments, the first Tiptree non-conformist church was founded in 1664, with the first church building established in 1750. Other buildings were added in the first half of the nineteen century, with the present church building being erected in 1864 as a Congregational Chapel. The year 1972 saw the establishment of the United Reformed Church (URC); the union of the Congregational Church in England and Wales, and the Presbyterian Church of England. It united with the Re-formed Association of Churches of Christ in 1981. Relatively recent additions to the Tiptree church complex include a new hall and a manse which were added in 2004
Our congregation comes from the community of Tiptree and surrounding area generally. We think of ourselves as not just a group of disparate Christians that happen to attend the same church, but a ‘family’ whose members support each other. Some of our folk have lived in the area and worshipped here for many years. Others have joined us more recently, having moved to Tiptree or the nearby villages from further afield, either for work or to retire. Our ‘family’ embraces all ages, from small toddlers to senior citizens, and those in between; working parents and the happily retired.
The Rev. Ken. Thom was formally inducted as the new minister for Tiptree URC on 13th October 2012. Under the overall oversight of Ken Thom and the serving Elders, all members are involved in some way in the various activities, fulfilling roles and exercising their gifts to continue the ministry of the church in the community.