The Methodist New Connexion opened the Zion Chapel in Zion Street, Bishopwearmouth, Sunderland on the 9th of January 1809 it being described as a “neat structure capable of accommodating about 600 persons and at a cost of £1,500” (Whellans Durham directory 1856). To which a gallery was proposed in 1812 due to the increase in the congregation…”this however very materially augmented the burdens of the trustees. The Reverend John Grundell was re-appointed to the circuit in 1815, and shortly afterwards was deputed to visit various circuits, and solicit subscriptions towards this object. A few weeks after his return home, he was called to his heavenly reward, and his remains were interred, according to his desire (Dec. 5, 1815) , beneath our chapel, and near the pulpit where he had so often preached the word of life”. (His remains were later moved to the Park Road site).
By the 1840s it had “become dilapidated and unsafe, so as to excite the apprehensions of the friends” who deemed it advisable to rebuild it. Fourteen shares, of the value of £120 each, were accordingly taken in the New Providence Building Society, recently established in the borough and a foundation stone was laid in 1845 and the new chapel was opened the following year. (The Methodist New Connexion Magazine 1856).
It was eventually closed and the congregation moved to the newly built Park Road Chapel which opened on the 18th of May 1887.
Christopher Atkinson was the minister in 1850 and B.T. Griffiths in 1856