chapel was leased to John Wesley in 1758 at the time that he was riding through East Anglia. Indeed in his Journal entry for April 1759 he writes:
Sun. 25. - I rode to Forncet, twelve miles from Norwich, where also was a building of James Wheatley's, which without my desire, he had included in the lease. We found William Cudworth had preached there in the morning. It was exceeding good for my sense of honour to come just after him. The people looked as direful upon me, as if it had been Satan in person. However they flocked from all parts, so that the Tabernacle would not near contain them. I preached about two: God bare witness to his truth, and many were cut to the heart. After preaching I found Mr. Cudworth sitting in the pulpit behind me, whom I quietly and silently passed by. About six I preached at the Tabernacle in Norwich........
It evokes a remarkable scene for this rural backwater. An enormous crowd of folk must have gathered to hear this 'incomer' speak and see how their local 'minister' would react. It would seem that Cudworth gave him the cold shoulder and that Wesley's peroration had certainly some effect on the sensibilities of those present.
The building was originally constructed of clay lump, which unless well-tended will deteriorate. The 19th century minister, George Maddeys, was very conscious of this and therefore in 1875 he set about instigating a restoration of the fabric ; the major undertaking was the application of brickwork facing to the whole building. Inside there is an ornamental ceiling rose, identical in style to that in the present Methodist Church (built in 1865) nearby.