Alford, Edward (1841-1909)

Primitive Methodist Magazine 1888
Primitive Methodist Magazine 1909

Early years

Edward was born on 22 January 1841 at Mere, Wiltshire, to parents John Alford and Sarah Turner. John was a blacksmith, trustee of the PM chapel and superintendent of the Sunday School.

Edward was converted in his teens during a religious awakening at Mere.


Edward’s obituary records that as a preacher he studied to be approved of God, a workman that needed not to be ashamed. His sermons were studiously and prayerfully prepared on evangelical lines, and by their delivery resulted in many being led to Christ, and building up of the churches of the faith in the Gospel. As a theologian, Edward belonged to the conservative school.

As a family visitor he excelled. Systematically and regularly in towns and villages of his stations, he visited the houses of the people in his charge, and his visits were looked forward to with pleasurable anticipation by old and young.

As an administrator he was statesmanlike and successfully dealt with chapel and other church difficulties as they arose.


Edward married Susanna Biggs (1840-1881) in the summer of 1863 at Banbury, Oxfordshire. Census returns identify six children.

  • Sarah Biggs (1864-1952) – married Arthur Thomas Guttery, a PM Minister
  • Laura (b1866) – a draper’s saleswomen (1911)
  • Herbert Joseph (1868-1932) – a chemist shop assistant
  • Edward John (1870-1965) – a draper, and later laundry agent
  • Frank Henry (b1872)
  • Ethel Mary (1878-1974) – married Alexander Daniel Craswell, an accountant

Edward married Betty Clegg (1841-1916) in the spring of 1885 at Oldham, Lancashire.

Edward died on 4 July 1909 at St Annes on Sea, Lancashire.


  • 1860 Aylesbury
  • 1862 Chipping Norton
  • 1863 Brinkworth
  • 1866 Witney
  • 1868 Chinnor
  • 1870 Faringdon
  • 1873 Newbury
  • 1878 Motcombe
  • 1884 Oldham ll
  • 1886 Bury
  • 1889 Knowlwood
  • 1892 Leighton Buzzard
  • 1898 Grays & Romford
  • 1901 Lavender Hill
  • 1902 Lavender Hill (Sup)
  • 1906 Goodmayes


Primitive Methodist Magazine 1883/115 (Susanna); 1888 (portrait); 1909/740

PM Minutes 1910/11

W Leary, Directory of Primitive Methodist Ministers and their Circuits , 1990

Census Returns and Births, Marriages & Deaths Registers


Comments about this page

  • Edward Alford had another son – Sidney James Alford – who died in tragic circumstances aged 9 months, whilst the father was officiating in Newbury. 

    Fuller details may be found on the Friends of Newton Road Cemetery website on

    By Brian Sylvester (29/05/2017)

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