Our history

In the beginning.

Chapter 1 has its roots in the Christian Alliance of Women and Girls Trust Corporation Ltd, founded in 1920 by a group of women concerned for the social and spiritual needs of young single women working in cities.

Just after the First World War, they set up lunch clubs where young women, many in menial jobs, could meet and make friends.

They also opened hostels for young working and student women, and later men, and in the 1950s, holiday homes to give young families affordable seaside holidays. This was the start of us providing accommodation for people in need.

Starting out as a housing association.

After adopting the name 'Christian Alliance' in 1968, we registered as a Housing Association in 1976.

As the Christian Alliance we started running hostels in Southampton and Liverpool and acquired the former Union Jack Club (Waterloo). It became the Christian Alliance Centre to provide accommodation for international students.

Read a letter about the birth of Christian Alliance

The 80s. Our housing projects grow.

After concerns that the Housing Association registration was affecting all the activities of the charity, we registered with the Charity Commission in 1985 as a separate national Christian Alliance Housing Association and assumed responsibility for projects at:

  • Waterloo
  • Leamington Spa
  • Liverpool
  • Manchester
  • Pembridge Square
  • Southampton
  • Tunbridge Wells

2009. The birth of Chapter 1.

On 1st April 2009 we became Chapter 1. We felt the name better represented the diversity of our services and of the people we serve.

Christian Alliance continued to pursue its own objectives and since 1983 has been operating as Keychange Charity. Since then our work has continued to develop and grow so that we now operate some 50 projects across many parts of England.

2012. Our registered name changed from Christian Alliance Housing Association Limited to Chapter 1 Charity Ltd.

Our recent history

To see our recent history in detail, download PDFs of our annual reports.

Annual reports


Who are Chapter 1 today?

Learn about who is behind our organisation today.

Who are Chapter 1