Godman, Herbert John (1888-1971)

Transcription of obituary published in the Minutes of Conference

HERBERT JOHN GODMAN: born in London in 1888, he went to live in Canada in 1909. There he trained to become a Methodist minister, and spent five years, returning to England in 1915. He was appointed to his home district of Penge, London, and was subsequently at Shaftesbury, Southampton and Chipping Norton. 

In 1930 he came to South Lincolnshire as Superintendent of the Spalding and Holbeach Primitive Methodist Circuit, and during this service led a movement among young people which resulted in a number of them becoming Local Preachers, of whom some are still active in the circuits of that area. He also served in Leeds (Richmond Hill), Stoke-on-Trent, Folkestone, Doncaster and Tiverton. 

He retired to Muswell Hill in 1953 where he took a great interest in the Chester House hostel for young people. In 1963 he moved to Holbeach to live in good health and vigour until an operation left his health impaired. Vigorous and witty, he applied himself with zest to his ministry. He was an evangelist, cared much for his people and was rich in personal faith. He died on 23rd August, 1971 in the eighty-third year of his age and the fifty-sixth of his ministry.


Herbert was born on 28 February 1888 at Penge, Surrey, to parents John, a house painter (1901), and Martha. He was baptised on 13 May 1888 at penge.

Whilst in Canada Herbert served as a minister in Alberta.

He married Beatrice May Emerson (1887-1957) in the summer of 1919 in the Camberwell Registration District, London. Birth Records identify five children.

  • Betty Florence (1920-1985)
  • Ruth Naylor Christine (1921-1944)
  • Michael John G. (1923-2000)
  • Beatrice Rosemary (b1925) – married Richard Oliver Morris in 1950
  • Herbert Charles (1926-1990)

Herbert died on 23 August 1971 at Holbeach, Lincolnshire.


  • 1915 Penge & Bromley
  • 1919 Shaftsbury
  • 1924 Southampton
  • 1926 Chipping Norton
  • 1930 Spalding & Holbeach
  • 1934 Leeds Rich Hill
  • 1939 Leeds East
  • 1942 Folkstone
  • 1945 Stoke-Burslem
  • 1947 S Yorks Coalfields
  • 1950 Tiverton
  • 1953 Liverpool (S)


Methodist Minutes 1972/182

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

Census Returns and Births, Marriages & Deaths Registers

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