Places of Worship

Highgate Baptist Church

England / Europe

Highgate Baptist Church, originally called Hope Street Chapel, on Conybere Street, is famous for having Rev Peter Thomas Stanford (1860-1909) as Birmingham’s first black minister, presiding at the church as its pastor between 1889 and 1895.  He was an African American born into slavery near Hampton, Virginia in the USA.  He campaigned for racial justice, addressing slavery and racial violence.  He converted to Christianity in 1875, was a pastor in Connecticut and Canada, and sailed to Britain, arriving in Liverpool in 1883.

He was an author and historian, writing books such as From Bondage to Liberty in 1889 and The Tragedy of the Negro in America in 1897.  Later he returned to the United States and died in North Cambridge, Massachusetts.

A blue plaque (organised by the Birmingham Civic Society) was unveiled in his honour on the church on 18 October 2011.


  • Highgate Baptist Church

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A medal was purchased for this point by: The Weston Foundation