London Village Workers Collection

  • Reference
      GB 133 LVW
  • Dates of Creation
      1925-[1959] and n.d.
  • Language of Material
  • Physical Description
      0.1 linear metres The majority of the material is in good condition but a few of the items are damaged. See the individual descriptions for details.
  • Location
      Collection available at University Archive and Records Centre, main University Library.

Scope and Content

The collection contains a wealth of material which provides an insight in to the meetings. There are several notebooks containing details about each of the visits. They include the location of the venue and a description of the weather; how many brethren attended; the number of people at the meetings as well as how many tracts were distributed. The books also list the names and addresses of people who held administrative positions such as Secretary and Treasurer.

In addition to the notebooks there are more than 90 photographs/postcards, some containing notes about the dates and venues, which can be checked against the typed list in the envelope labelled 'Details of tours by London Village Workers...' as well as a small selection of tracts, possibly examples of those distributed by the workers at the meetings.

Administrative / Biographical History

The London Village Workers was the name of a Brethren outreach activity which started at the end of the nineteenth century and continued well in to the twentieth century. Brethren (workers) travelled to local areas (in this instance, to villages within twenty miles of London) to share the gospel with local residents. Meetings usually took place in the open air on Saturday afternoons and evenings as well as at Easter and Whitsun. Workers called door to door, distributing tracts, inviting people to attend prayer meetings and to share fellowship. Children attending the meetings were often sent copies of the Boys and Girls magazine.


  • LVW/1 - Miscellaneous material
  • LVW/2 - Notebooks

Access Information

The collection is open to any accredited reader.

The collection includes material which is subject to the Data Protection Act 2018. Under the Act 2018 (DPA), The University of Manchester Library (UML) holds the right to process personal data for archiving and research purposes. In accordance with the DPA, UML has made every attempt to ensure that all personal and sensitive personal data has been processed fairly, lawfully and accurately. Users of the archive are expected to comply with the Data Protection Act 2018, and will be required to sign a form acknowledging that they will abide by the requirements of the Act in any further processing of the material by themselves.

Acquisition Information

The miscellaneous material in series 1 was donated by June Bray.

The notebooks in series 2 were donated by Keith Barnard.

Conditions Governing Use

Photocopies and photographic copies of material in the archive can be supplied for private study purposes only, depending on the condition of the documents.

A number of items within the archive remain within copyright under the terms of the Copyright, Designs and Patents Act 1988; it is the responsibility of users to obtain the copyright holder's permission for reproduction of copyright material for purposes other than research or private study.

Prior written permission must be obtained from the Library for publication or reproduction of any material within the archive. Please contact the Head of Special Collections, John Rylands Library, 150 Deansgate, Manchester, M3 3EH.

Custodial History

The miscellaneous material came from the family of Frank Bray, former Honorary General Secretary of the London Village Workers.

The notebooks came from South Park Chapel, Ilford and were given to Keith Barnard when he visited there.


No further accruals are expected.

Related Material

There is another (as yet uncatalogued) collection of Village Work papers in the Christian Brethren Archive at the University of Manchester Library which contains similar material.


Leaflet entitled Then and the villages and small towns of London's country.

Personal Names

Corporate Names