Latham, Frederick (1901-1985)

Transcription of obituary published in the Minutes of Conference

FREDERICK LATHAM: born at Crewe on 3rd May 1901. Following his education, he worked first in a munitions factory during the First World War and later at the local railway works. He was trained at Hartley College where he greatly valued the personal interest shown by Professor A. S. Peake. Here his love for biblical and theological studies was widened to the finest literary works. 

Prior to college he served at Folkestone in the Dover Circuit and afterwards in the following circuits: London (S.E. London Mission), Mansfield, Grimsby Central, Redhill, St. Leonards and Bexhill and Folkestone, where he remained upon retirement. 

He considered his sixteen years in Redhill as bringing a particular challenge. He vigorously worked at the Central Hall to clear a heavy debt. His efforts included the organizing of series of lectures by outstanding national personalities and speakers which helped to make the Central Hall an important focal point of community life. His own gifts as a speaker with a fine grasp of the English language were highly valued. 

His interest in the Christian ministry of healing increased by virtue of his responsibilities as a part-time chaplain to a Psychiatric Hospital. In all his circuits he was a stimulating, informative and challenging preacher and a devoted pastor who cared faithfully for his members. Throughout his entire ministry he extended his great love of literature and virtually to the end of his earthly life applied himself with mental vigour to books of scholarly depth and value. 

While at Rainworth, Notts, he married Dorothy Currah, a daughter of The Manse, who supported him graciously and lovingly in his work. The Folkestone Circuit, the place of his first and last active appointments, was the recipient of their continued support during their retirement in Hythe. Following a short period in hospital, he died in his home on the 15th May 1985 in the eighty-fifth year of his age and the sixtieth year of his ministry.

Family

Frederick was born on 3 May 1901 at Crewe, Cheshire, to parents Matthew, a locomotive boiler riveter (1911), and Clara Ann.

He married Dorothy Currah (1902-1985) in late 1931 in the West Ashford Registration District, Kent. Dorothy was the daughter of Rev. T.E. Currah. Birth Records identify three children.

  • Dorothy S (b1934)
  • Peter J (b1937)
  • Margaret (b1943)

Frederick died on 15 May 1985 at Hythe, Kent.

Circuits

1923 Dover

1925 Hartley

1927 SE London Mission

1929 Mansfield

1933 Grimsby

1934 Redhill

1950 St Leonards &c

1955 Folkstone

1965 Folkstone (Sup)

References

Methodist Minutes 1985/78

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

Census Returns and Births, Marriages & Deaths Registers

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