Powell, Philip Henderson (1873-1951)

Transcription of obituary published in the Minutes of Conference

PHILIP HENDERSON POWELL: born in Herefordshire in 1873. Following training in Hartley College, he entered the Primitive Methodist Ministry in 1900, and served mostly in Yorkshire and Lincolnshire. 

He retired from the active work in 1945, having given forty-five full, happy, crowded, and devoted years to village Methodism. He passed peacefully away at Barrow-on-Trent on the 4th February 1951, after a very short illness, at the age of seventy-seven, in the fifty-first year of his ministry. 

Henderson Powell was a true ‘son of consolation’. He had a genius for long friendship and, like the Master he so faithfully served, he readily stretched out his hand to all, and helped to heal them by high example, strong faith, good humour, and kindly comradeship. His circuits included East Dereham, Epworth, Brigg, Dent, Brighouse, Mirfield, Spalding, Chinnor, Bradfield, and Watton. He found rich compensation in quiet places, rural ways, and country people. He built their chapels and cheered their hearts. His leadership opened many new chapel projects which stand true memorials to his love of a worthy place of worship for the people.

‘Through struggle and much disability he exercised a wonderful ministry’ says a dear friend of the years.


Philip was born on 31 May 1873 at Craswell, Herefordshire, to parents James, a farmer, and Diana.

He married Elizabeth Frances Eaton (1877-1971) in the summer of 1905 in the Merthyr Tydfil Registration District, Glamorgan. Census return and birth records identify four of five children.

  • Fernley (1908-1975) – a moral welfare worker (1939)
  • Vernon (b1909)
  • Marslie (1911-1985) – a housekeeper (1939)
  • Belva (1914-1989) – a hairdresser assistant (1939); married Arthur R Mann in 1955

Philip died on 4 February 1951 at Barrow on Trent, Derbyshire.


  • Hartley
  • 1900 Colchester
  • 1902 E Dereham
  • 1905 Briston
  • 1907 Epworth
  • 1910 Brigg
  • 1914 Dent
  • 1917 Brighouse
  • 1920 Mirfield
  • 1924 Spalding & Holbeach
  • 1927 Chinnor
  • 1930 Saffron Walden
  • 1933 Aberavon
  • 1935 Lydney &c
  • 1936 Bradfield
  • 1940 Watton &c
  • 1945 Barrow on Trent (S)


Methodist Minutes 1951/138

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

Census Returns and Births, Marriages & Deaths Registers

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