Archives of Edwin Roberts
Warrington, London, Billericay 30.10.1919-5.11.2000
File to list and annotate records in the
archives of Edwin Roberts that may be of interest to others.
Jacqueline Harris (daughter), looking at the piles of papers:
"Everything seems to be done on the internet nowadays. Could we list
Civil Service Prayer Union
Background and history from 1872 to 1914
Junior Civil Service Prayer/Christian Union
History from 1891 to 1914
Civil Service Prayer and Christian Unions
History from 1914 to 1938
Civil Service Christian Union
History from 1939 to 1951
History from 1952 to 1967
History from 1968
Thursday 30.10.1919 Edwin Roberts born. 34 Dickenson Street,
Warrington, Lancashire. His mother and father were Lily and Bert Roberts.
His father's full name was Herbert Edwin Roberts - a point that had to be
emphasised to anyone who questioned the propriety of calling "Bert's"
eldest son "Edwin". Young Edwin was born at home, at milking time, in the
evening. 34 Dickenson Street was at a sharp kink in the road, opposite
which was a passage with a shippen on one side and houses on the other. The
shippen was where milking cows were kept, to supply the neighbourhood with
fresh milk. When he was older, Edwin would hold the tail of the cow being
milked, to keep it from flicking the face of the milker.
DEATH OF MR J. McKENZIE.
ONE OF THE FOUNDERS OF THE GOSPEL HALL.
After an illness extending over six years, three of which were spent in the
Whitecross Hospital, the death took place on Friday last week of Mr. John
McKenzie, 44, Dickenson Street.
A native of Largo, Fifeshire, Scotland, Mr McKenzie came to Warrington as a
boy, and later married Miss Urmston of Lower Walton. He was 72 years of
and until he was injured some years ago, was employed as a locomotive
at the Pearson and Knowles Coal and Iron Co. Ltd. Mr McKenzie was one of
founders of the Gospel Hall, and a few years ago held the office of
superintendent and conducted a young men's Bible class. He leaves a widow,
two sons and five daughters.
Mr J. Street conducted the funeral service at the Cemetery on Tuesday, and
chief mourners present were: The widow; Mr and Mrs Alexander McKenzie and
and Mrs Eli McKenzie (sons and daughters in law); Mr and Mrs Shaw, Mr and
Simpson, Mr and Mrs Mousdale and Mr and Mrs Roberts (sons-in-law and
daughters); Miss Alice McKenzie (daughter); Miss Whittaker, Bolton (niece);
Messrs J.W. McKenzie and Edward Roberts (grand-sons); and the Misses Jessie
McKenzie, Ethel Shaw, May and Eva Roberts (granddaughters. The bearers
former members of Mr McKenzie's Bible class.
Sunday (?) 18.9.1938 Edwin Roberts moved to London. Lodgings in
(38?) Belitha Villas, Barnesbury. He had passed his Executive Officer's
exam and moved from Inland revenue to Exchequer and Audit. First ten weeks
in London were like being plunged into history - largely because he
sometimes audited in the Foreign Office, opposite No.10 Downing Street.
On the first day took a no. 68 bus from Kings Cross to Blackfriars Bridge.
Heavy traffic. Introduced to the First Secretary, Sir Francis Dickson, who
was the first Sir he had ever met. Other people he met included a man
wearing a monocle, someone with a wooden leg, someone with wing collars and
a black hat. Porters' chair in hall had sides and top to keep out draughts.
Later took a 1d tram ride to the Foreign Office.
Thursday 29.9.1938 Munich Crisis. When Edwin turned up for work
there were police across the entrance to Downing Street. He saw
Henderson(?) arrive from Berlin and he saw Neville Chamberlain go off in
his car to Heston airport. Chamberlain flew to see Hitler in Munich.
September 1944 A Forces Witness Team reformed after flying-
bomb hiatus. Edwin's wife, Lily, and eldest surviving son, Andrew,
were in Warrington. Edwin and the small team of Bible Christians were
holding services at the London Embankment Mission, under the arches at
Charring Cross. The meetings were smelly. Joan Douglas, who lived at the
Foreign Missions Club, invited Chas ("Chris") Christensen from the USA, and
he invited Edwin and Harry to the Bible Class at the American base (Green
Street). A union of effort developed, which became the United Nations
Witness Team. The American part of the Team was always changing, as
they were sent off to Europe and others came in. The British part did not
have the same energy, and had domestic commitments, but they provided a
continuation and an administration. Edwin organised the team with a pencil
and little notebooks. Everything was organised an preserved. When he died,
the receipts for every collection taken were amongst the records stored in
26.3.1946 Fred Tatford revived the moribund national executive of
the Civil Service Christian Union. The old executive was almost
extinct. In its last years before the war there had been divisions between
those who would appease and cooperate with
the Nazi's, and
those like Fred
Tatford who opposed fraternal links with Nazi organisations. Most of the
old executive wanted to retire. Fred recruited new members from London
Assemblies of the Christian Brethren. Some of these, like Edwin Roberts who
became Assistant Secretary, do not seem to have belonged to the Union at
the time they joined its executive.
Andrew Roberts' web Study Guide
Take a Break - Read a Poem
Click coloured words to go where you want
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use the Communication
Headings alphabetically indexed
Prayer Union (1875)
Boy Copyists - Boy
Billy Graham 1943
Billy Graham 1946
City of London Forces Witness
Civil Service Catholic Guild
Civil Service Prayer/Christian Union histories:
E.E. Heathfield's 1886 "Retrospect"
V.P. Peacock's history 1872 to 1911.
Civil Service Observer 15.11.1911 p.249
G. F. Lane's history 1872 to 1932
1872 (London) to 1958 (Wales)
Edwin Roberts' archive
Faith for the Times
Federation of London Prayer Unions 1904
Hymn Books and Song
Junior Civil Service
Non Combatant Corps and
Revival in our Time
Tom Rees Campaign
Tom Rees Campaign
United Nations (Forces) Witness Team