Centenary History project

Rev W Hurst

Ministers: Robert Hall Memorial Baptist Church

Name: William Edwin Hurst

Dates: 1906-17; 1935-39

Handbook Entry:
RAWDON College (after which he named his homes, "Rawdon")
Astwood Bank, 1902-5
Robert Hall, 1906-17
Brownhill Road, Hither Green, Catford, 1917-18
[Out of ministry, 1918-27]
City Tabernacle, Brisbane, Queensland, Australia, 1927-34 Robert Hall, 1934-39

Memoir: Baptist Handbook 1941
William Edwin Hurst was born in Birmingham on 8th April, 1875, became a member of the Heanage Street Church, and entered Rawdon College to prepare for ministry in 1897. He settled at Astwood Bank in 1902, and, in the following year, married Miss Amy E. Hastings, of Birmingham, who proved a true helpmeet through the years. In 1906 he began a fruitful ministry in the Robert Hall Memorial Church, Leicester, where he laboured with much success until his health broke down in 1917. After a short pastorate at Brownhill Road, Catford, London (1917-18), Mr. Hurst went to Melbourne, Australia, in 1919, to represent the firms of Jason and Wolsey. In 1927, health having been restored, he settled in the City Tabernacle Church, Brisbane, and was happy once more in the work of the ministry. In 1930-31 he was President of the Queensland Baptist Union. Rev W Hurst c.1936 Returning to England in 1934, he was re-invited to the Robert Hall Memorial Church, Leicester, which was an eloquent testimony to his fine character and gracious spirit. His return to Leicester was warmly welcomed, but his physique was not equal to our Northern clime, and his last years were marked by the struggle of his brave spirit against diminishing strength. He resigned in October, 1939, and died on 25th June, 1940, a much-loved and greatly-esteemed man. He left a widow and two sons and daughters, one of his sons, the Rev. Norman Hurst, being a Congo missionary.



Extract from a booklet published in 1953 to celebrate the Golden Jubilee of Brownhill Road Baptist Church, Catford, London:
"Early in 1917 the Diaconate were able to recommend to the Church the name of the Rev. W.E. Hurst, of Robert Hall Memorial Church, Leicester, and he was welcomed to the Church as Pastor on July 1, 1917. Mr. Hurst, who was not a man of robust constitution, was anxious for the sake of his health to come south and by special arrangement with the Church he did not take up full duty until September, 1917. Unhappily the change did not provide the improvement for which he had hoped and a complete breakdown in March, 1918, compelled him to resign. Mr. Hurst then sought the benefits of the sunnier South African climate and later went to Australia where he worked with considerable success for many years. When he eventually returned home to his former Church in Leicester, "Brownhill" had the great pleasure to welcome him for a Sunday. He has since passed on to Glory, but he has left behind a sweet and fragrant memory, for he was indeed one of God's very gentle men who quickly endeared himself to his people."


Extracts from literature sent to me from Tabernacle Baptist Church, Brisbane, Queensland Australia.
"Trained in Rawdon College, and with the rich experience of ministerial work in the Homeland, including the Robert Hall Memorial Church, Leicester, Mr. Hurst ministered in Victoria for some years before coming to Queensland. A keen scholar, able preacher and effective Pastor. Mr. Hurst exercised a gracious and telling Ministry throughout his seven years. It is worthy of note that he, with three other Ministers of the City, formed a party of stalwarts whose earnest labours for the well-being of the City and State will ever be remembered. At probably no period in a City's history was there a finer team of public-spirited men in Brisbane. Wherever evil raised its head they were ready to strike, and Mr. Hurst was among the foremost. In the life of the Denomination, as President, and in other directions, he made a memorable contribution to Baptist work in Queensland. At the end of his term he returned to England, and resumed his Ministry in the Robert Hall Memorial Church at Leicester.