Oxford Centre for Methodism and Church History (OCMCH)

Director: Professor William Gibson

Contact: admin.ocmch@brookes.ac.uk

About us

The Oxford Centre for Methodism and Church History (OCMCH) promotes historic links between Oxford Brookes University and the Methodist Church through archives, artworks, publications and research.

The Centre’s collections are a resource of global standing for research into Methodism and aspects of religion in Britain from 1700.

More recently, the Centre developed significant digital resources such as British Methodist Buildings, an unparalleled visual library of over 11,000 freely-accessible images of Methodist buildings around the UK.

Visit our OCMCH blog

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William Gibson

Professor William Gibson

Professor of Ecclesiastical History

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Name Role Email
Mr Tom Dobson Digitisation and Collections Officer tdobson@brookes.ac.uk
Dr Peter Forsaith Research Fellow of the Oxford Centre for Methodism and Church History pforsaith@brookes.ac.uk
Dr Daniel Reed Research Fellow, Public Engagement Manager d.reed@brookes.ac.uk

Research activities

Researcher presenting to a conference

The Centre is dedicated to a range of publications and research activities. These include the OCMCH Press, journal series, supervision of research degrees and the award of fellowships to people engaged in related fields of study.

Alongside one-off conferences, regular research events organised by the Centre include the Annual John Wesley Lecture, Ecclesiastical History Colloquium and Methodist Studies Seminars.

Each year, the Centre appoints visiting research fellows whose interests relate to our collections and expertise. Recent topics include:

  • Pre-Raphaelite associate artist James Smetham
  • religious celebrity in the 18th century
  • aspects of 18th-century revivals
  • Non-Jurors
  • Anglican-Methodist re-union
  • critiques of early Methodism.

The OCMCH also caters for the supervision of research students who wish to study aspects of religious and Methodist history. Recent projects have investigated:

  • early Methodist finances
  • John Wesley’s ideas of education
  • religion in 18th-century workhouses.

Archives and collections

The Centre is home to the Wesley Historical Society Library, the second most significant collection of Methodist published works in Britain. Its strengths include British Methodism, Methodist periodicals, historic circuit plans and more.


Old copies of The Methodist Recorder