History

The History of the East Midlands Region


Our historical roots as an association go back to the meeting of Presbyterian Ministers of Nottinghamshire, Derbyshire and South Yorkshire (dating from 1798) which decided to admit lay people in 1802. Most of our congregations owe their existence to the Act of Uniformity of 1662 which, forced clergy to use the Book of Common Prayer or be deprived of their living. This common root is commemorated in "Three Hundred Years" a history of the Unitarian chapels in the East Midlands published in 1963, written by Rev. Gordon Bolam, the father of Eric, our current district treasurer. Another person we owe a debt of gratitude to is the late Grenville Needham under whose guidance the NMPUA was incorporated and the present constitution codified which gave us the financial stability that we continue to enjoy to the present day. Under the twenty year secretaryship of Peter Hewis the district found renewed enthusiasm and, more recently a "Working Group" containing Sir Peter Soulsby, Ruth Archer, David Burton and others reviewed the district and its congregations and gave them fresh impetus. This Working Group has recently been reformed under the name of "Vision".

Nottingham University holds records of North Midlands Presbyterian and Unitarian Association, 1785-1959