Wes Talks Digital Download – The Tolpuddle Martyrs
The Tolpuddle Martyrs were six agricultural labourers from the village of Tolpuddle in Dorset, England, who, in 1834, were convicted of swearing a secret oath as members of the Friendly Society of Agricultural Labourers. Some of them were also Methodists.
They were arrested on charges under an obscure act during a labour dispute against cutting wages before being convicted in R v Loveless and Others and sentenced to penal transportation to Australia.
They were pardoned in 1836 after mass protests by sympathisers and support from Lord John Russell and returned to England between 1837 and 1839. The Tolpuddle Martyrs became a popular cause for the early union and workers’ rights movements and are still remembered today, mainly at the annual Tolpuddle Festival.
Our panel features Methodist ministers Steph Jenner (former minister of Tolpuddle Methodist Chapel) and Simon Topping, who has completed two pilgrimage walks to Tolpuddle.
Hosted by Mandy Briggs
Organised in conjunction with the Methodist Church’s Learning Network South West.
Recorded June 2021. Running time: 1 hr approx
Please note, you will be emailed a link to viewthe recording once payment has been processed – there may be a delay from purchase confirmation to receiving the link.
About the panel:
Revd Steph Jenner is a supernumerary Methodist minister, who retired early due to ill health.
Before this she was the Superintendent Minister of the Bridport and Dorchester Circuit, now Dorset South and West Circuit with Weymouth and Portland.
Here she had responsibility for the current Methodist Chapel at Tolpuddle but was also one of the founding members of the Tolpuddle Old Chapel Trust (TOCT) which bought, preserved and is restoring the original chapel in the village.
Active at the annual Tolpuddle Festival, they secured wider Methodist participation over the last 8 years including making it a necessary diary date for each new Methodist President and Vice President.
Revd Simon Topping is currently working in the Methodist Church’s Gloucestershire Circuit and has been a Methodist Presbyter for over 30 years, with appointments also in Birmingham, south London and Argentina.
He has been involved in two pilgrimages to Tolpuddle and two long distance marches to G7 summits as part of the campaign to cancel debt in poor countries.
Simon was a co-founder of the Green Cross Co-op, a Christian workers’ co-op based in Gloucester. In September 2021 he will become the Superintendent of the North East Somerset and Bath Circuit.