- Robert Newstead (1789-1865) was born at Howton St Peters in Norfolk. He was converted at the age of eighteen and entered the Wesleyan ministry in 1815. Newstead served as a missionary in Ceylon for nine years from 1816 and translated parts of the Bible and the Book of Common prayer into Indo-Portugese. After his return to England, he compiled a Portugese hymn-book for use in Ceylon and continued to take an active interest in foreign missions. Newstead served as a circuit minister in England from 1825 to 1832 and was then appointed to the English Mission in Paris. After four years in France, he returned to home circuit work. Newstead superannuated in 1861 to Tadcaster in Yorkshire. Source: Hill's Arrangement 1861 and Minutes of Conference 1865.
From the Manchester Conference to Mary Rattenbury [in the Islington Circuit, London]. He received her letter this morning. He had been very anxious to hear from her and was therefore very pleased when the letter arrived. J R wants very much to be with her but is in a difficult situation as the President [Thomas Jackson] has ordered him to remain here. There is a meeting of the treasurers [J R was one of the treasurers of the Wesleyan Education Committee] to discuss arrangements for the various funds. She is quite right to believe that he will return home as soon as possible and indeed he is finding his time here 'very irksome'.
It has pleased God to bless her with good health and he is comforted by his belief that God will take good care of them. Mary should avoid any anxiety and be careful for her health. He trusts that Mr [unreadable name] will be attentive to her.
'The deputation [unreadable word] has just been read. I find I am down for Ireland South[?] with John [Wesley] Thomas - I shall do my very best to be home on Monday night...' He wishes that she had kept [their daughter?] Mary with her. Could she not return home for a few days to help look after the children?.
The committee examining the cases of Messrs [Samuel] Dunn, [William] Griffith, [John C.] George and [James] Bromley will report this morning.
He has heard that there has been a great deal of excitement concerning the expulsion of [James] Everett. There will almost certainly be a separation in many circuits.
'The Sabbath question is brought on by [Robert] Newstead who is thanked for his exertions'.
A list of figures is given, representing sums of money in Connexional funds.
His time here in Conference is very trying but as one grows older it seems that responsibility becomes more burdensome and unavoidable.
He is on a committee appointed to look into the Guildford Chapel case but does not know when it will be held.
The committee looking into Dunn's case has reported[?]. The matter will be finally resolved[?] at 5 o'clock. He will keep this letter open until then.
The case of Dunn etc has still not been resolved.