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Upon the Isles of the Sea

Discovering the LDS heritage of England, Ireland, Scotland, & Wales

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In Their Footsteps

Cotton to converts

We sometimes share stories of early Mormon converts without really appreciating the context those stories took place in.   For instance, the City of Preston is forever firmly established in the beginning tales of British Mormonism, but have you ever wondered what is was like to live in 1837 Preston?

Continue reading “Cotton to converts”

Elder Hinckley

In June 1933 Elder Gordon B. Hinckley arrived in Britain as a young missionary.  The first area he was assigned to was Preston.  On the day of his arrival his companion, Elder Kent S. Bramwell, announced they were going to hold a street meeting in the Market square.   Elder Hinckley felt overwhelmed by such a prospect and declared “You’ve got the wrong man to go with you.”    Nonetheless, that evening the two of them were singing, preaching and bearing testimony.  Elder Hinckley recalls:  Continue reading “Elder Hinckley”

Preston’s Obelisk

The Obelisk in Preston’s market square was The place to catch the attention of the people of Preston and the surrounding communities as they arrived here for trading.   Proclamations, announcements and sermons were all delivered beneath this ‘Facebook’ of its day. Continue reading “Preston’s Obelisk”

Timothy Matthews

This is a continuation (part four) of the Fielding Legacy story.

In my last post we discovered the three Fielding tombstones in Colmworth graveyard.  This article looks at the fourth tomb of the Reverend Timothy Matthews.

Rev Annette Reed, the current vicar of nearly Little and Great Paxton records,.. Continue reading “Timothy Matthews”

“They died in peace”

This is a continuation (part three) of the Fielding Legacy story.

While Joseph Fielding was in Bedfordshire he visited the home of his sister Ann Matthews.  He recorded,

August 1st  Called at Mr. Matthews; they were absent.  I looked into the house,  particularly I went into the Room where my Beloved Father died, on the 3rd of March, 1836.  Here he had been nursed with all care and tenderness in his last days by his Daughter, Ann Matthews.  He died in peace.  I have often felt thankful that he and my Mother died even before the Message of the Covenant, being renewed, came to this Land, for as my Brothers & Sisters did not receive the Message, I fear they would also have rejected it through their Influence.  (Fielding, p. 49)

He shared a similar sentiment when he visited their graves in the Colmworth graveyard: Continue reading ““They died in peace””

Dear Ancestor

This was one of a series of tombs lost to sight among brambles and earth in the cemetery of Darwen Lower Chapel, Lancashire.   They were rediscovered in 2016, cleaned, photographed and catalogued thanks to the desires of a visiting American, Beverly Sherman, who has around 60 ancestors buried in this one spot.

 This poem she found sums up the sentiment behind the project: Continue reading “Dear Ancestor”

Ancestors in the Brambles

The 20th May 2016 was a defining moment for Beverly Sherman… and me.  Beverly was part of a Mormon Heritage tour group weaving their way through LDS Britain, and I was the local guide showing them the sights and sounds.  We were scheduled for the group to start a tour of LDS Preston at 9:00 am, and Beverly contacted me beforehand to see if it was possible to have a private tour before the main tour to visit some of her own ancestral homes.   I agreed and before sunrise we drove together to Blackburn and Darwen, Lancashire.  Beverly recorded: Continue reading “Ancestors in the Brambles”

In Their Footsteps

This feature will be a visual visit to British church history sites. There is something magical about ‘being there’ – to stand where they stood. To see what they saw. People suddenly become more tangible. Their decisions and actions are brought back to life again.

For those who are overseas or armchair tourists we hope this will bring these sites to life for you. For those who can visit we hope you will use this information to Continue reading “In Their Footsteps”

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