Turner, William (1882-1957)

Transcription of obituary published in the Minutes of Conference

WILLIAM TURNER: born at Barnham, Thetford, in 1882. Trained at Hartley College, he entered the Primitive Methodist ministry in 1907, and was stationed at Kingston-on-Thames. Redhill was his next circuit, and subsequently his long ministry was spent in the Oxford District, at Banbury, Swindon, Stewkley, Ciippenham, Wallingford, Oxford, and finally in the Brinkworth circuit, where he laboured at Wootton Bassett for sixteen years. 

He had a rich capacity for friendship and was honoured by the rank and file as one of God’s gentlemen. His ministry was unique, and his fine quality of spirit was manifested in the sick room, where his soul would rise above physical environment. He gave of his best, and it was a great joy and honour for him to be present at the opening of the new hall which was the outcome of his vision and enterprise. 

When he became a supernumerary after forty-seven years in the active ministry, he happily settled in Wootton Bassett. Although the twilight was clouded by suffering, his faith was radiant as gold, for he carried his shrine everywhere. He continued throughout to take a live interest in the Brinkworth circuit, and rejoiced in the happy fellowship of his colleagues, whom he loved. The end of his earthly pilgrimage was sudden and peaceful, on 23rd February 1957, in the seventy-fifth year of his age and the fiftieth of his ministry.


William was born on 6 May 1882 at Ingham, Bury St Edmunds, Suffolk, to parents George Isaac Turner, who worked the land (1891), and Harriet Alderton.

Before entering the ministry William worked the land (1901).

He married Ada Emma Gosford (1880-1940) in the summer of 1911 at Kingston-on-Thames, Surrey. Birth records identify three children.

  • Christopher William (1916-1941) – died in WW2
  • Nancy G (1917-1919)
  • Margery Gosford (1922-2008) – married Ian Edward Coop, a professor of animal science (1978 ), in 1941; emigrated to New Zealand in 1953

He married Winifred Rose Mills in the summer of 1941 in the Swindon Registration District, Wiltshire.

William died on 23 February 1957 at Wootton Bassett, Wiltshire.


  • Hartley
  • 1907 Kingston
  • 1909 Redhill
  • 1911 Banbury
  • 1914 Swindon II
  • 1918 Stewkley
  • 1924 Chippenham I
  • 1928 Wallingford
  • 1932 Oxford
  • 1938 Brinkworth
  • 1954 Brinkworth (S)


Methodist Minutes 1957/205

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

Census Returns and Births, Marriages & Deaths Registers

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