Middleton-in-Teesdale Primitive Methodists (1824)

Middleton-in-Teesdale, whence Mr Batty started on his journey to Brough, was visited by him and his colleagues in the autumn of 1823. They preached in the open-air and thereby attracted numbers who had not been in the habit of attending any place of worship, and religions impressions were soon made upon many of their minds. In the month of May 1824, Mr Joseph Grieves, who has for above thirty years been respected and useful travelling preacher, found peace with God, and he and two or three others who had been partakers of the same blessing formed themselves into a class, toward the end of the same month. They were not favoured with Sabbath preaching for some months afterwards; but they held prayer-meetings in dwelling houses, two or three times a week, and on Sabbath evenings, — and as they had been ring-leaders in wickedness, many went through curiosity to hear what kind of prayers they could make. A blessed revival of religion soon followed, and numbers were, brought to God, chiefly in meetings for prayer. Messrs. Grieves, Leekley, Rain, and Collinson, soon began to exhort in public, and they and others of Middleton Society opened several places in the upper part of Teesdale and within the borders of Yorkshire, namely Bowlees, Harwood, Forest, &c. The Middleton Society soon became numerous and powerful; many of its members were distinguished for their zeal and usefulness and exerted a beneficial influence in the locality by theifrconsistent walk and devotional habits. A chapel was raised in due time, which has since been enlarged twice or thrice, and the society connected with it has rendered great service to the denomination in various ways.

From, ‘The History of the Primitive Methodist Connexion from its origin, by John Petty, 1860, p171.


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