Withington, Herbert Reginald (1902-1964)

Transcription of obituary published in the Minutes of Conference

HERBERT REGINALD WITHINGTON: born at Malins Lee in Shropshire on 9 February 1902. At an early age he responded to the call of Christ and later offered himself for the work of the Christian ministry in the Primitive Methodist Church. After training at Hartley College he served his Probation in the Leytonstone and Forest Gate circuit, and after ordination in 1928 he ministered in Bishop Auckland, Shildon, Haltwhistle, Dudley, Leicester, Oswestry, Tunstall, Stretford, and Rochdale.

He will be particularly remembered for the remarkable pastoral ministry he exercised in the County of Durham during the depressing years of the 1930s. He was loved by the Durham miners. Into so many homes that were darkened by unemployment and poverty he brought the hope and cheer that comes from a deep faith in the good purposes of God. He carried peace wherever he went. He gave quite special care to his hospital visitations and would spend long hours with the sick if only he might bring to them the comfort of the love of God.

His preaching was, in the main, of a teaching nature. He was constantly urging and helping his people to give “a reason for the hope that is in you”. He found inspiration from his love of the countryside and from his appreciation of good music, being himself an accomplished violinist.

After an illness lasting only four weeks he passed peacefully away on 13 July 1964 in the sixty-second year of his age and the thirty-sixth of his ministry.


Herbert was born on 9 February 1902 at Malins Lee, nr Wellington, Shropshire, to parents Herbert William Withington, an ironworks moulder (1911), and Mary Ann Wilson.

He married Edith Mary Pinson (1900-1992) in the summer of 1932 in the Newport Registration District, Shropshire. Birth records identify five children.

  • Reginald J (b1933)
  • Dennis H (b1935)
  • David W (b1937)
  • Maurice H (b1937)
  • Phyllis M (b1942)

Herbert died on 13 July 1964 at Rochdale, Lancashire.


  • Hartley
  • 1928 Leytonstone
  • 1930 Plumstead
  • 1932 Bishop Aukland
  • 1933 Shildon
  • 1936 Haltwhistle
  • 1940 Dudley
  • 1945 Leicester Hinckley
  • 1950 Oswestry
  • 1953 Stoke – Tunstall
  • 1956 Stratford &c
  • 1961 Rochdale


Methodist Minutes 1965/175

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

Census Returns and Births, Marriages & Deaths Registers

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