Shepherd, James Ewart (1903-1969)

Transcription of obituary published in the Minutes of Conference

JAMES EWART SHEPHERD: born at The Lye, Staffordshire, in 1903. He was a son and grandson of the manse, and began his ministry in 1927, after training at Hartley Victoria College. 

His first appointment was to Fernando Po, West Africa, where he had a very successful ministry for twelve years. After service in the Manchester (Hulme and Whalley Range) Circuit he joined the Forces and for five years served as a Chaplain to the Army in Nigeria and Italy. Returning to circuit work, he served at Blackburn (Trinity), Prees Green, Market Drayton, Grantham. 

In each of these circuits he showed a complete consecration to tasks both great and small, and was deeply loved and highly appreciated as an effective preacher and a caring pastor. He possessed a rare gift of humour, a warm friendliness, and a charm of personality which endeared him to his people. No one was ever dull in his presence. Although he was quiet in speech and demeanour he could be forthright as occasion required. His fine powers of leadership and his considerable gifts as an administrator were recognized and admired. 

Some of his best work was done during the seven years he was superintendent of the Grantham Circuit. Drawing heavily upon his mature abilities and wide experience, and showing real courage and insight, he successfully tackled problems which had long resisted solution. 

He retired from the active work in 1968, but for him there was to be no long eventide. After a short illness, he died on 21 June 1969, in the sixty-fifth year of his age and the forty-second of his ministry.


James was born on 7 July 1903 at The Lye, Staffordshire, to parents James Shepherd, a PM minister,  and Sarah Jane Barnes.

He married Jessie Jackson (1909-1999) in early 1933 in the Lancaster Registration District, Lancashire.

James died on 21 June 1969 at Grantham, Lincolnshire.


  • 1927 Fernando Po
  • 1939 Manchester Hulme
  • 1941 Chaplain H.M. Forces
  • 1946 Blackburn Trinity
  • 1949 Prees Green
  • 1956 Market Drayton
  • 1961 Grantham
  • 1968 Grantham (S)


Methodist Minutes 1970/167

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

Census Returns and Births, Marriages & Deaths Registers

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