Dictionary of Welsh Biography

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BELCHER , JOHN ( fl. 1721-1763 ), Methodist exhorter .

Son of Edmund Belcher of Eglwys Ilan, Glam. Father and son were smiths by trade, but the latter began to preach with the Methodists . In the Watford Association of 1743 he was appointed to visit the unmarried brethren and a year later was appointed Howel Harris 's assistant in some of the southern counties. He had grave doubts as to the propriety of the continued connection between the Methodists and the Church of England , and, in 1745 , joined with others in addressing a letter of remonstrance to the Association and threatening to resign. Shortly afterwards he was appointed to tour North Wales . In the dispute between Harris and Daniel Rowland he repudiated the former and attached himself to the latter.

In 1758 he was crossed in love, impetuously enlisted in the army , and later fought in America . It was rumoured in Wales that he d. out there c. 1751 , but it is known that he was at Trevecka in Aug. 1763 . He was a man of strong intellectual gifts and an exceedingly acceptable preacher .


  • Diary of William Thomas, Cardiff Manuscript 4, 877;
  • Methodistiaeth Cymru (1851–6) , i, 487, ii, 141, iii, 4, 21-2;
  • Y Tadau Methodistaidd (1895) , i, 229-30;
  • Hanes Eglwysi Annibynnol Cymru , ii, 373-4;
  • D. E. Jenkins , Calvinistic Methodist Holy Orders (1911) , 103-5, 135;
  • Cylchgrawn Cymdeithas Hanes y Methodistiaid Calfinaidd , xxviii, 39, xxix, 27, 30, 70, 73-4, 134, xxx, 30, xxxi, 52, 95, xxxii, 43.


Reverend Gomer Morgan Roberts, M.A., (1904-93), Pont-rhyd-y-fen / St Dogmael's / Llandybïe

Published date: 1959