- Joseph Bradford (c.1741-1808) was born possibly at Blandford in Dorset. He entered the itinerancy in 1773 and after serving circuits in Cornwall and Bristol, accompanied John Wesley for several years as his companion and secretary. After falling ill in 1781, Bradford returned to the circuit ministry before resuming travelling with Wesley from 1787 until the Methodist leader's death. Bradford was a member of the committee which drew up the Plan of Pacification in 1795 and served as President of Conference that same year and again in 1803. He also served as Governor of Kingswood School from 1798 to 1801. Bradford appears to have been suffering from mental instability in the period just prior to his death. Source: Dictionary of Evangelical Biography 1739-1860, edited by Donald M. Lewis (1995) and An Alphabetical Arrangement of Wesleyan Methodist Preachers, compiled by Kenneth Garlick (1975)
- Thomas Olivers (1725-99) was converted in Bristol by the preaching of George Whitefield after a dissolute early life. He entered the itinerancy in 1753 and after working in Scotland, Ireland and England, moved to London in 1776 where he was the corrector of John Wesley's printing press. He superannuated in 1790. Source:Arminian Magazine 1779, 77ff and Methodist Magazine 1799, 511
- John Duplex (fl.1780) was one of the original trustees of London's City Road Chapel. On the deed he is recorded as being a weaver of the parish of Christ Church. Source: George John Stevenson, City Road Chapel, London, and its Associations, Historical, Biographical, and Memorial (1872), 250
- Thomas Coke (1747-1814) was born in the Welsh town of Brecon, the son of a wealthy apothecary. He was educated at Jesus College Oxford and took Anglican Orders in 1772. Coke was driven from his curacy in 1776 because of his evangelical leanings and he then joined with the Methodists. He swiftly rose to become John Wesley's chief assistant and it was widely assumed that Wesley intended Coke to be his successor. In 1784 Wesley appointed him to be 'Superintendent' of American Methodism and during his trip to the United States later that year, Coke ordained Francis Asbury to be his colleague. Coke was to make repeated transatlantic visits during the next 25 years. He travelled extensively on preaching tours and while he was never fully accepted because of what Americans viewed as his divided loyalties, he nevertheless played a significant part in shaping the American Church. Coke served two terms as President of the Wesleyan Conference and also presided regularly over the Irish Conference. His most significant contribution was however in the field of overseas missions. In addition to his work in the United States and Canada, he made four tours of the West Indies and promoted attempts to spread the gospel in West Africa and Gibraltar. Coke died while en route to India as the leader of the first Methodist mission to that country. Source: Apostle of Methodism by John Vickers (1969), Encyclopedia of World Methodism (1974) and Dictionary of Evangelical Biography 1739-1860, edited by Donald M. Lewis (1995)
- John Atlay (b.1736) was born at Sheriff Hutton in Yorkshire. He was converted at the age of 22 and entered the itinerancy in 1763. After serving circuits in Yorkshire and Scotland for ten years, he was appointed by John Wesley to be his book steward in London. By 1785 Atlay was showing signs of disenchantment with Methodism, which included his attendance at Moravian worship. In 1788 he supported the Dewsbury Chapel trustees in their dispute with Wesley over the power to dismiss preachers. He severed his connection with the Methodists after the Conference of that year and became an independent minister at Dewsbury. Source: Encyclopedia of World Methodism (1974) and Dictionary of Evangelical Biography 1739-1860, edited by Donald M. Lewis (1995)
From Inverness to [Joseph] Bradford at City Road Chapel in London. Bardsley has an opportunity to send this letter with a friend to inform Bradford that thanks be to God, he has reasonable health in body and soul.
He thinks that there is good being done in this circuit, but as there is some opposition they are not having the success that they would like. Bradford should pray for them. With regard to Bardsley's own soul, since he came to Scotland, he has enjoyed much peace and has often had liberty when speaking to the people.
Bardsley has often asked after Bradford and was pleased to hear that he is somewhat better [Bradford suffered from poor health at this time which necessitated his temporary retirement from the active itinerancy] and that he is able to preach now and then.
It would give Bardsley much pleasure to see Bradford again so that they could pour out their hearts together in praise.
The bearer of this letter Mrs Suter is one of those who attends Bardsley's preaching. She is travelling to London to seek her husband who she thinks has been pressed [into the army or navy].
Bradford should be kind enough to write and let Bardsley know how he and his dear wife are doing.
His dear love should be passed to [Thomas] Olivers - Bradford should pass on Bardsley's thanks for the kind letter. His love should also be passed to Mr and Mrs Mitchell, [John] and Mrs Duplex, Dr [Thomas] Coke, and [John] Atlay and his good wife.