Wigley, Alfred Lanceley, B.A., B.D. (1901-1985)

Transcription of obituary published in the Minutes of Conference 

ALFRED LANCELEY WIGLEY, B.A., B.D.: born at Liverpool on 7th January 1901. The son of a Primitive Methodist minister, he was one of two brothers who entered the ministry of that church. His Primitive Methodist background was to remain with him throughout his life, though he was a man of broad outlook and sympathies. It was just after the First World War that he recognised the call to become a minister and in 1923 he entered Hartley College and Manchester University where he gained the degrees of B.A. and B.D. 

He went to Glasgow in 1928 to serve the church at Shettlestone which had been founded by his father 40 years earlier. While here, in 1931, he married Constance Durham. She died a year later, shortly after giving birth to a son, David. In 1934 he married Janet Allan who was to be a major influence in his life for forty-five years. In the same year he moved to Warrington and subsequently to Sheffield (North East), Southport (North), Harrogate (South), Darlington (North) and Grimsby (Flottergate). At Grimsby he became a reluctant Superintendent. On retirement in 1966 he moved to Knaresborough where he was to remain for nineteen years. 

Both he and his wife entered fully into the life of the circuit and the church at Gracious Street. He preached regularly in the circuit, and in surrounding circuits, and was welcomed as a sound, thoughtful, scholarly and evangelical preacher. He had the happy gift of being able to get on with everyone and was equally at home in a church Bible Study group and in the Knaresborough Men’s Forum. In particular he forged a close link with the young people of the church; he was an inspiration to them and they a joy to him. 

Having been a useful sportsman in his younger days, he retained an interest in sport to the end. He supported Liverpool F.C. and Yorkshire County Cricket Club — an indication of his broad sympathies. His wife died 1979 and he continued to live in Knaresborough for another six years. In August 1985 he moved into the Methodist Home for the Aged at Woking to be near his son. 

He died as he lived, a man of lively, personal faith always eager to preach the Gospel. He was active and disciplined in spirit, mind and body until the end. He died suddenly on 28th December 1985, having been in the pulpit at Camberley the previous Sunday, in the eighty-fifth year of his life and the fifty-eighth year of his ministry.


Alfred was born on 7 January 1901 at Liverpool, Lancashire, to parents Albert John Wigley, a PM minister, and Elizabeth Townsend.

He married Constance Durham (1901-1932) in the spring of 1931 in the Preston Registration District, Lancashire. They had one son, David (b1932).

He married Janet Allan (abt1893-1979) in 1934 in Glasgow,

Alfred died on 28 December 1985 at Woking, Surrey.


  • Hartley
  • 1928 Glasgow II
  • 1933 Glasgow Pkh
  • 1934 Warrington
  • 1938 Sheffield NE
  • 1942 Southport N
  • 1947 Harrogate S
  • 1952 Darlington N
  • 1958 Grimsby Flot
  • 1965 Grimsby W
  • 1966 Knaresborough (S)


Methodist Minutes 1986/85

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

Census Returns and Births, Marriages & Deaths Registers

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