The college opened in Sheffield in 1864 as a base for training for the MNC ministry, with a £5,000 bequest from Thomas Firth Junr. This was the culmination of a 30-year effort which had begun in 1835 with the personal tuition offered by Thomas Allin. The college accommodated 16 students, who normally followed a two-year course, but it was rarely, if ever, full. The funds were sufficient only for the Principal, supported by part-time staff. The Union of 1907 meant that the UMC had two colleges, neither of which was large enough. In 1910 the normal course was extended to three years and from 1913 Ranmoor provided for first-year students only, who then transferred to Victoria Park College for two years. After requisition in World War I Ranmoor was sold to Sheffield City Council in 1919, the proceeds endowing the Ranmoor Chair at Hartley Victoria College. The building was demolished in the 1960s.