Records of Thirsk Preparative Meeting of the Society of Friends

Scope and Content

Minutes of Preparative Meeting, 1750/1-1957, 1985-95 (7 vols.) [A 14.1-14.6, 14.8]; Minutes of Women's Preparative Meeting, 1744/45-1787, 1836-1866 (2 vols.) [A 15, B 7]

Administrative / Biographical History

The site of the Meeting House in Kirkgate in Thirsk has been in use since its purchase in 1647 by Thomas Pratt, originally, it is thought, as a place of worship for a group of Seekers who preceded Quakers in the area. It was registered by local Friends in 1689. The Meeting itself centred on the hamlet of Wilden, where there was a greater concentration of Friends. Friends were gathering here as early as 1662, when several were committed to York Castle for taking part in Quaker worship. The Meeting was recorded in 1665 as part of Kirkbymoorside Monthly Meeting and in 1669, as part of Thirsk Monthly Meeting. At that time its members included Isaac Linsley, Matthew Day, Benjamin Mason, William Thurnam, William Crosby, William Clarkson, John Deighton, Thomas Jackson, Bryan Peart and William Woodworth. The Meeting covered Thirsk, Balk, Oldstead and Ampleforth, as well as Wilden. At some point between 1669 and 1745, the Meeting was renamed Thirsk. In 1827, when Thirsk Monthly Meeting was dissolved, the Preparative Meeting was transferred to York Monthly Meeting. It ceased to be a recognised Preparative Meeting in 1957, but regained that status in 1981. The Meeting House was rebuilt in 1701 and 1799, and is still in use. As well as the adjoining burial ground, a separate burial ground, known as Barbeck, was bought in 1666.


The records are numbered and arranged according to the system used when they were in Clifford Street Meeting House

Access Information

The conditions of deposit include a clause requiring written prior permission from a Friend Custodian for access to consult current legal documents and any material less than fifty years old

Acquisition Information

The collection of archives of the Society of Friends formerly held at the Friends Meeting House in Clifford Street, York


In English

Other Finding Aids

Contents listed in Handlist 75, Inventory of the records of Yorkshire General Meeting and York and Thirsk Monthly Meetings of the Society of Friends formerly preserved at the Friends' Meeting House, Clifford Street, York (1986)

Alternative Form Available

There are additional microfilm copies of A 14.1-14.3 and A 15

Conditions Governing Use

As with access, the photocopying of current legal documents and any material less than fifty years old requires the permission of a Friend Custodian

Related Material

Related material in Leeds University Library: Records of Thirsk and York Monthly Meetings

Additional Information

The records are deposited and remain the property of the Society of Friends