St Andrew's Hall, Records of

Archive Collection

Scope and Content

The collection contains council and committee minutes; annual reports; financial statements; principal's papers; papers relating to staff; correspondence; building plans and photographs. There are records of the college's relationship with its sponsoring bodies and of its collaboration with Selly Oak Colleges. The collection also includes student records and records of alumni organisations.

The majority of material dates from 1966-2000 but there are some records of the college's predecessor institutions, Carey Hall and St Andrew's College. This material comprises legal documents, council minutes, college registers and publications. There are also photocopies of legal documents from the 1910s and 1920s. The collection contains some records, such as committee meeting papers, of the college's sponsoring bodies.

The papers document the history of St Andrew's Hall from its formation through to its closure in 1999. They represent the management and administration of the college, the development of its academic programme, its community life and activities. The records also offer an insight into the aims and concerns of those involved in the provision of missionary training in the late 20th century, and their reflections on their own role and practice.

Administrative / Biographical History

St Andrew's Hall Missionary College was established in 1966 for the study of Mission and the preparation of candidates for missionary service in the UK and overseas. It was an ecumenical college sponsored by the Baptist Missionary Society, United Reform Church (formerly the Presbyterian Church of England) and the Council for World Mission. The college was formed from the amalgamation of the women's missionary college Carey Hall (founded 1912) and the men's St Andrew's College (founded 1946).

Since the late 1950s the missionary colleges in Selly Oak had been moving towards integrated training for men and women. Joint staff meetings, classes, worship and social events had created closer links between the colleges and by the early 1960s full integration was a serious possibility. St Andrew's College and Carey Hall began developing plans to build a united college on a site offered by Selly Oak Colleges Council, however they could not raise sufficient funds for the project. The two colleges continued to operate separately, but St Andrew's had very limited accommodation as St Andrew's House had been sold to Westhill as part of the agreement with Selly Oak. The colleges merged to form St Andrew's Hall in 1966, and the new college was based at Carey Hall.

St Andrew's Hall accepted single men and women, married couples and families. Students were received from the three sponsoring bodies, the Baptist and Presbyterian Deaconess Committees and continental missionary societies. In addition to Mission students there were people studying child care, social work, and various courses at Westhill or the University of Birmingham. Many students took short courses of less than a year; in the first term there were 38 students, 20 of whom were enrolled for 1 term only. Reverend Stanley Wilton was the first Principal of the college (a position he held until 1981). During the first two years the college buildings were altered and extended to include a new chapel, library and family flats. The college was officially renamed 'St Andrew's Hall Missionary College' in November 1968.

In 1969 St Andrew's Hall, the College of Ascension and Kingsmead College established the Centre for Training in Christian Mission. Mission students from St Andrew's three sponsoring bodies would typically spend the autumn term in Biblical and theological studies then go on to the 'Training in Mission' semester which ran from January-July. For those unable to stay for a whole year, the college also ran a short course in Mission in the autumn term. In 1972/73 the Training in Mission semester was moved to September-March and short courses were run in the summer term. However there were still many students (e.g. missionaries on furlough) for whom standard term dates were unsuitable. The following year the Training in Mission program was broken down into 3 week blocks so that students could attend for 3 weeks, a term, or a whole year. Many students came from missionary bodies or churches and did courses linked to missionary service, such as Development Studies or English as a Foreign Language.

During the first ten years at St Andrew's student numbers increased, the courses diversified and shorter courses were offered to meet with student demand. By the mid-1970s the number of students participating in courses had reached over 100 per year, although only a small proportion would stay for the complete session. In 1974 Selly Oak Colleges introduced the 'Guaranteed Places Scheme', whereby an agreed number of places at St Andrew's Hall (and other missionary colleges) were reserved for Selly Oak Colleges students. This meant that the majority of places at the college were set aside for students from the sponsoring bodies or Selly Oak Colleges. This provided a significant proportion of the college's income and increased financial stability.

In 1978 the Centre for Training in Mission became the Department of Mission. The new Department restructured existing courses and added more optional elements. In 1979/80 the Certificate in Mission was introduced and awarded to students who completed a year's study in the Department of Mission. There were no entry requirements and the course was designed to accommodate a variety of modes of study and methods of assessment.

In September 1981 Dr. Dan Beeby became Principal, a role he combined with his existing Selly Oak Colleges lectureship. St Andrew's invested in its library resources and set up a Major Repairs Fund. The college also launched a Special Appeal with a target of £35,000 for the refurbishment of student accommodation and development of a conference suite, which provided an additional source of income. However in 1983, following a drop in student numbers, Selly Oak Colleges decided to end the Guaranteed Places Scheme. Staff at St Andrew's produced a paper with plans and projections for the next five years, as the college had to develop a more competitive approach to recruiting students.

Reverend David Grainger, Principal from 1986 to 1997, oversaw further improvements to the college buildings such as the installation of fire doors, boiler replacements and a new children's playroom. The college's academic program continued to expand - in 1991/92 the Department of Mission launched an MA in Mission and a joint Certificate in Mission and Development Studies. They also introduced the Award in Mission, which could be completed in one or two terms. In 1992/93, the college reported increased student numbers and a resurgence of missionary candidates for work overseas. However the mid-1990s was also a period in which missionary bodies were questioning the meaning of mission and the way in which missionaries should be trained; mission agencies in the UK were experiencing financial difficulties, the Selly Oak Colleges Federation had to make redundancies, and Kingsmead College closed in summer 1992. In summer 1996 student numbers at St Andrew's Hall were low, but the college hosted events and visiting groups to boost its income. In addition the Church of Scotland decided to send missionary candidates to Selly Oak for training.

In December 1994 St Andrew's Hall signed an affiliation agreement with the Selly Oak Colleges Federation. This resulted in closer administrative and academic ties and more involvement with plans for building the Orchard Learning Resources Centre. In his last two years as Principal, David Grainger altered the college's governance and structure, forming a Council Executive and committees for Finance, Household, Education and Promotions in 1997.

On 30 November 1996 the college celebrated its 30th anniversary, but by June 1997 the three sponsoring bodies had decided that they would not continue funding the college at existing levels - they would stop the block grant system of funding and only support the students that they were sending for training. David Grainger left the college and John Burgess became Acting Principal from August 1997 until Chris Wigglesworth was appointed in April 1998. On 1 July 1998, the URC confirmed that they would withdraw support from August 1999. On 17 September 1998 the college Council decided to close the college and sell the buildings and land to BMS. The college held a closing ceremony on 3 July 1999, and closed on 31 August 1999.

Conditions Governing Access

Access to all registered readers. Some records in this collection are closed in accordance with the Data Protection Act of 1998

Acquisition Information

Moved to the Cadbury Research Library from the Orchard Learning Resources Centre in 2010

Other Finding Aids

For preliminary boxlist please see the online catalogue

Conditions Governing Use

Permission to make any published use of any material from the collection must be sought in advance in writing from the Director of Special Collections (email: special-collections@bham.ac.uk). Identification of copyright holders of unpublished material is often difficult. Cadbury Research Library: Special Collections will assist where possible with identifying copyright owners, but responsibility for ensuring copyright clearance rests with the user of the material

Custodial History

This college closed in 2000 and its records were deposited with the University of Birmingham in 2001 with the agreement of the Baptist Church Missionary Society, the United Reformed Church and the Council for World Mission

Related Material

Cadbury Research Library: Special Collections holds the records of Carey Hall United Missionary Training College For Women (finding number: CH) and St Andrew's College (finding number: SAC)

Also held are records of missionary societies which include records of their missionary training colleges: Church Missionary Society (finding number: CMS) and the Bible Churchmen's Missionary Society (finding number: MS47)