John was born on 26 November 1852 at Easington Lane, Co Durham.
John was converted aged fourteen through the ministry of Rev Henry Pratt.
John’s early education was conducted in the British Schools and at the age of ten he followed his own father and foster-father to work in the coal mine.
[Editor’s note: see the pages of John Redhead’s ‘Life Story’, which have been added to this page, for more detail, and further information from his grandson in the comments below.]
At Cheadle, a new chapel and a consolidated circuit marked John’s term. At Ashbourne a derelict cause was resuscitated and a new chapel built. At Gainsborough, the Trinity Street debt was reduced by £1,000. In the middle period of his ministry, John was a powerful advocate of scriptural holiness and a very effective open-air speaker.
Whilst at Tredegar, John formulated the policy that led to the formation of the Blackwood circuit and employment of an additional minister.
The time of WW1 found John in Sheffield. Though giving devoted service two or three times a week to Middlewood Military Hospital, John organised reduction in Chapel debts and developed Hillsborough Church.
In retirement at Lincoln, John became secretary of the Ministers’ Fraternal and also served as Nonconformist Tutor to the Diocesan Training College.
His obituary records that John’s ministry was one of unsparing labour and intensely evangelical.
John married Mary Ann Farrow (1854-1937) in July 1879 at Guisborough, Yorkshire. Census returns identify six of eight children.
- Bartholomew William John (1880-1946) – a PM Minister
- Daniel Albert (1882-1934) – a schoolmaster (1911)
- Joseph Farrow (1884-1961) – a sorting clerk and telegraphist (1911)
- Margaret Jane (1886-1975) – married John Portas in 1924
- John Fletcher (1889-1915) – killed in action at Gallipoli, WW1
- Thomas James (1893-1950) – an ironmonger’s apprentice (1911)
John died on 19 January 1926 at Lincoln, Lincolnshire.
- 1875 Margate
- 1876 Dover
- 1878 Deal
- 1879 Sheerness
- 1882 Richmond
- 1884 Ryde & Ventnor
- 1887 Clayton West
- 1890 Cheadle
- 1893 Ashbourne
- 1898 Gainsborough
- 1901 Market Rasen
- 1905 Doncaster
- 1908 Newbridge
- 1911 Tredegar
- 1914 Sheffield VII
- 1918 Tipton
- 1921 Lincoln (Sup)
Primitive Methodist Magazine 1911/379; 1926/512
PM Minutes 1926/280
W Leary, Directory of Primitive Methodist Ministers and their Circuits , 1990
Census Returns and Births, Marriages & Deaths Registers