Soulsby, James William (1889-1981)

Transcription of obituary published in the Minutes of Conference

JAMES WILLIAM SOULSBY: born on the 23rd September 1889 at Low Fell, Gateshead. After his call the ministry he worked and studied hard so that he might serve his Lord with greater efficiency. In the early years of his ministry he was an accomplished open air preacher, where his strong, vibrant voice was a great asset. During his ministry he took a keen interest in the work of the Methodist Missionary Society. 

Most of his ministry was spent in the North-East of England. The probationary period of his ministry was spent in Hamilton in Scotland; he then moved to Shieldmuir. Coming back to England he served in the following circuits: Seaton Delaval, Crook, Horden, Leigh, Chorley, Jarrow, Ashington, and Crook (second term). He was ably supported in all his work by his first wife Charlotte Heal whom he met in the Stanley Circuit. After her death he married Margaret Green who also gave devoted service to him and to the Church. 

He died on the 31st January 1981 in the ninety-second year of his age and the sixty-fifth year of his ministry.


James was born on 23 September 1889 at Low Fell, Co. Durham, to parents Thomas Soulsby, a coal miner, and Mary Ridley.

Before entering the ministry James worked as a grocer shop assistant (1901).

He married Charlotte Ransome Heel (1892-1965) in the spring of 1920 in the Lanchester Registration District, Co. Durham.

He married Margaret Green in the summer of 1966 at North Shields, Northumberland.

James died on 31 January 1981 at Seaton Court Rest Home, Whitley Bay, Tyne & Wear.


  • Hartley
  • 1916 Glasgow II
  • 1920 Wishaw II
  • 1923 Seaton Delaval
  • 1924 Crook
  • 1929 Horden
  • 1935 Leigh
  • 1936 Chorley
  • 1941 Jarrow
  • 1947 Ashington
  • 1952 Crook
  • 1955 N Shields (Sup)


Methodist Minutes 1981/87

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

Census Returns and Births, Marriages & Deaths Registers

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