President of the BC Conference in 1884, born in March 1833 at Bratton Clovelly, Devon. Whilst recovering at Chichester from a severe illness in 1870 he was sent to convalesce in Brighton. He found the society there in a very poor state with about 20 members and thinking of closing. This spurred him to a ministry of enormous energy in which he is said to have visited ‘some 7,000 persons’. He raised the cost of the site for the Bristol Road chapel, opened in 1873 and the architect was so impressed by his efforts that he waived all fees. A contemporary journalist, by no means a whole-hearted supporter, wrote that Martin, ‘wrought a complete revolution in the Bible Christian cause in Brighton.’ All this caused Martin further strain and and until he left in 1878 a second minister was appointed to assist him.
His ill-health continued and in 1881 on medical advice he left his appointment at Forest Hill to go to South Africa where, amongst other activities he interviewed the Zulu king Cetshwayo and effectively founded the Richmond mission. On his return he renovated the Forest Hill chapel, but his health was so impaired that he was unable to preach. He was Governor of Shebbear College 1885-1892 and retired to Torquay in 1894, where he died on 14 March 1911.
(* James) Antony Funnell, The Story of Bristol Road Bible Christian – Methodist Church, Brighton, 1872-1989, (Brighton, 2000)