John Wareing Bardsley - Bishop 1887-1892

Bishop John Wareing Bardsley

Born 29 March 1835, eldest son of Canon James Bardsley, at that time curate of Brierly near Bradford. Graduate of Trinity College Dublin and ordained Priest in 1860, Curate at St Anne's Sale, 1859-1861, then spent remaining years at a number of Liverpool/Bootle churches (St Lukes, St John's Bootle, St Saviours) - decidedly evangelical and keen on establishing parochial organisations. Married Elizabeth Powell in 1862 by whom he had five children. Appointed Archdeacon of Liverpool in January 1887 - consecrated Bishop of Sodor and Mann in August 1887.

Keen on open-air preaching at Douglas Head. Was highly respected by the Methodists on the Island, he once invited all non-conformist ministers to spend a day with him at Bishopscourt. He was also a total abstainer and acted as chairman at various temperance meetings.

The change in the tithe system meant he found Bishopscourt difficult to maintain - he also believed that as Douglas was the rapidly developing capital he should spend more time there, leaving Bishopscourt as a theological college - he transferred the theological college from King William's College to Bishopscourt in 1889 nameing it the BishopWilson Theological College.

His health was not good and although popular with clergy and people he was criticised for being off Island too often. He was translated to Carlisle in December 1891, probably through the influence of his brother-in-law Francis Powell MP for Wigan. Died in September 1904, aged 69; buried at Roughtonhead near Carlisle.


J. Gelling A History of the Manx Church Douglas:Manx National Heritage 1998 (note Gelling is in error re marriage)



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© F.Coakley , 2000