Bolton, Richard (1867-1951)

Primitive Methodist Magazine 1922
Primitive Methodist Magazine 1922

Early years

Richard was born on 25 December 1867 at Blackburn, Lancashire, to parents Henry and Mary. Henry was an insurance agent (1891).

Richard started work in the factory at the age of ten, remaining eight years, and shared the educational disabilities common among the workers’ children in Lancashire towns at that time. Later, he worked on the staff of the Blackburn Daily Telegraph.

Richard surrendered himself to Jesus Christ at the age of fourteen, during the ministry of Rev Daniel Neilson. After teaching in Sunday School, at the age of nineteen Richard became a candidate for the plan.

As there was no vacancy in college, after honourable service as a Lay Agent, Richard entered the active ministry in 1893.


His obituary records that Richard was a capable administrator and a faithful pastor in all his circuits.

In 1945, Richard moved to the Isle of Man. During eighteen years in retirement, Richard continued to preach with great acceptance in the churches of the neighbourhood. His long experience and sound judgement made him a valuable member of the Quarterly Meeting. A strong personality, he exerted considerable influence on local affairs. One of his sons (John) was a member of the House of Keys.

Even in his later years he lived a full life – his books, a game of bowls with his friends, and a gracious ministry to all in need – these things made his retirement a time of real joy to him and to those about him.


Richard married Charlotte Brown (1866-1962) in the summer of 1899 in the Howden Registration District, Yorkshire. Census returns identify four children.

  • John Brown (1902-1980) – an accountant; made a Knight Bachelor in 1977 for public services in the Isle of Man
  • Henry Arthur (1904-1993)
  • Kenneth (1906-2004) – a pharmicist
  • Albert Brittain (1909-1978)

Richard died on 24 July 1951 at Douglas, Isle of Man.


  • 1893 Canterbury
  • 1895 Redhill
  • 1897 Thetford
  • 1898 Docking
  • 1901 Brandon
  • 1904 Clayton West
  • 1907 Burnley II
  • 1911 Barton on Humber
  • 1915 Keighley II
  • 1919 Ramsey
  • 1922 Stroud
  • 1926 Bristol
  • 1929 Banbury
  • 1933 Cheltenham (S)


Primitive Methodist Magazine 1922/852

Methodist Minutes 1951/153

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

Census Returns and Births, Marriages & Deaths Registers

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