The Methodist Church is organised into 31 Districts which provide support and oversight to Circuits, as well as provide a link through to the national church and the Conference. More locally, churches are grouped together into Circuits under a Superintendent Minister.
other websites to help you
  • Tolpuddle Martyrs information

    • Tolpuddle Old Chapel Trust is the local group working for the restoration of the orginal 1818 chapel, and its return to community use.
    • The Tolpuddle Martyrs Museum at the eastern end of the village is a good source of information about the Martyrs and their importance in the evolving Trade Union movement and the wider Labour political awakening.  Information about the annual Martyr's Festival and Rally, is held in the grounds of the Museum.
    • The Old Crown Court in Dorchester is a great place to visit to complete the story. Opening hours are limited, especially if you want to include the recommended tour of the cells.
    • George Loveless had a significant impact on the community in Hobart, Tasmania, while there as a convict.  His memory is especially honoured on the Methodist Church there.
    • Many of the Martyrs eventually moved to Canada, and their legacy is particularly remembered at Siloam United Church in London Ontario.
  • The Martyrs as Methodists

    • The Methodist Church website has information about the church today, and what is distinctive about Methodism.
    • The tradition of fighting injustice and campaigning on behalf of those in need remains core to the church, through the work of the Joint Public Issues Team
  • Methodist Heritage

    • Methodist people are very aware of their roots and Methodist Heritage is the part of the Church which is aimed at preserving its heritage and using it as a tool for contemporary mission
    • Wesley's Chapel is considered by many as ‘The Mother Church of World Methodism’, having been built by John Wesley in 1778.
    • Originally built in 1739, The New Room, Bristol, was a meeting place for societies and a base for Wesley and his followers when working in the Bristol area.
    • The Old Rectory in Epworth was the childhood home of John and Charles Wesley. Built in 1709, it replaced an earlier building that was destroyed by fire when John was just 6.
    • The Englesea Brook Museum of Primitive Methodism epitomises the change and rapid growth in Methodism in the century after John Wesley’s death.
  • Church in the countryside, and rural issues

    • At the heart of the Tolpuddle story are the problems of a rural community, many of which are still important today.
    • The Arthur Rank Centre serves both the spiritual and practical needs of the rural Christian community through a programme of community and social projects, resourcing and training
    • The Rural Theology Association aims to study the Gospel and develop theology in a rural setting, raise awareness of the nature of rural ministry, worship and mission in the world at large, and discover ways of living in the countryside which embody a Christian response to the world.
  • The Methodist Church

    • The Methodist Church in Britain is a broad, growing church of around 250,000 members across the country. The national church website has a great deal of information about what it means to be a Christian in the 21st Century and what is distinctive about Methodism today. It also has details of how the church operates and how it is responding to the needs of society.
    • Locally, Tolpuddle is a member of The Bridport and Dorchester Circuit which gives close ties with other Methodist Churches in the area, and The Southampton District, one of 31 Districts which help the Church operate as a Connexion.
  • Local links

    • Visit Dorset offers a range of information for people who are visiting the area, as well as Tolpuddle itself.
    • Nearby Athelhampton House is a wonderful 15th Century family home, now open to the public.
    • The Dorset County Museum in Dorchester is an ideal place to learn more about the history of Dorset.
    • West Dorset is a wonderful place to live as well as visit. West Dorset District Council offers information about the area and the facilities it offers.
  • Political and Union links

    • The Union movement upholds the political tradition of the Martyrs, with the TUC at the heart of the modern movement. Their website includes details of the annual rally and the history of agricultural worker's unions.
    • The natural successor to the Union formed by the Tolpuddle farm workers is Unite.
    • Although not founded until the start of the 20th Century, The Labour Party has become the principal political force representing the interests of workers in the UK.