Collingwood, James Wright (1881-1949)

Transcription of obituary published in the Minutes of Conference

JAMES WRIGHT COLLINGWOOD: born at Cramlington, Northumberland, in 1881. After training at Hartley College, he entered the Primitive Methodist Ministry in 1909, and served with distinction in circuits in the north-east of England.

He was a lover of men, and his practical sympathy with their problems gave his preaching a social emphasis which won a response, especially from the miners. He had the gift of inspiring others with his enthusiasm, and sought out and trained many young men as Local Preachers. A wise administrator, he initiated and carried through many schemes for the clearing of debts. Undaunted by difficulties, he tackled many circuit problems, and no task was too hard or tedious if it would serve the interests of the Church he loved. 

He lived for his people, and his pastoral work was an expression of his desire to win souls for Christ. In 1948 he came to Wingate in the Thornley Circuit among friends of his earlier years and exercised a gracious and fruitful ministry. After an active and strenuous life of unbroken health, he died on 28th February 1949, after only four days’ illness, in the Hartlepool Hospital, in the sixty-seventh year of his age and the fortieth of his ministry.


James was born on 27 November 1881 at Cramlington, Northumberland, to parents Robert, a mason (1891) and later a grocer (1901), and Helen. before entering the ministry James worked as an engine fitter.

He married Janet M Swanston (1898-??) in the summer of 1919 at Berwick, Northumberland. Birth records identify four children.

  • Helen Swanston (1920-1922)
  • Robert Desmond (1923-1997)
  • James B (b1927)
  • John Graham (1930-2017)

James died on 28 February 1949 at Hartlepool, Co. Durham.


  • Hartley
  • 1909 Berwick
  • 1913 Sydney
  • 1914 Crook
  • 1919 Durham
  • 1923 Coxhoe
  • 1928 Seaton Delaval
  • 1932 West Auckland
  • 1937 Alfreton &c
  • 1944 Goole, Carlisle Terrace
  • 1948 Thornley


Methodist Minutes 1949/139

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

Census Returns and Births, Marriages & Deaths Registers

Comments about this page

  • Thank you for the information about James Wright Collingwood.
    He was my Grandfather and James B Collingwood was my father ( he died in 2016).
    I am researching my family tree and this information was very helpful.

    By Pamela Sutherland nee Collingwood (23/12/2019)

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