Nicholas, William Henry (1874-1953)

Primitive Methodist Magazine 1923
Primitive Methodist Magazine 1923

Early years

William was born in 1874 at Ketley, Shropshire, to parents Maurice Nicolas and Mary Steel. Maurice was a PM Minister.

William was educated at Bourne College and Wellington College.

William was brought to realise assurance of his salvation through reading one of Spurgeon’s sermons. He began to preach at the age of eighteen and two years later entered the ministry.


William’s obituary records that throughout the prime of his life he had a good voice, an ear for music, and a direct evangelical message which made him a popular gospel singer, and a powerful open-air preacher. Yet at the same time, because of his love of reading, his pulpit work was marked by scholarly and thoughtful exposition of truth and experience, and by a quiet earnest manner.

He was modest, unassuming, and free from self-advertisement. One for whom no task was too small.

A concern for the welfare of the community made him a keen advocate of temperance and other social reforms.

In circuit administration and various District offices he was cautious and sometimes hesitant in his decisions because so anxious to be right, but always devoted and painstaking. His last months were spent with his son, himself a Methodist minister.


William married Alice Meredith (1882- 1981) in the summer of 1910 at Ludlow, Shropshire. Birth records identify five children.

  • Beatrice Alice (1911-1992) – married Archibald Davis in 1943
  • Winifred Constance (1912-1982)
  • William Meredith (1915-2000)
  • Wesley Henry (1917-1969)
  • Angus D (b1923)

William died on 25 December 1953 at Stourbridge, Worcestershire.


  • 1894 Wymondham
  • 1896 Farringdon
  • 1898 Hereford
  • 1899 Morecambe
  • 1902 Leominster
  • 1905 Radstock
  • 1908 Leintwardine
  • 1910 Redruth
  • 1912 Horncastle
  • 1915 Epworth
  • 1918 Barnsley I
  • 1921 Knighton
  • 1922 Craven Arms
  • 1925 Ashton under Lyne
  • 1928 Weobly
  • 1933 Wilton
  • 1935 Wilton (Sup)


Primitive Methodist Magazine 1923/558

Methodist Minutes 1954/127

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

Census Returns and Births, Marriages & Deaths Registers

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