Renowned preacher, author and broadcaster. Born in a mining village near Bolton on 13 January 1929 and educated at Oxford and Hartley Victoria College, Manchester, he served as a missionary in the Copper Belt in the former Northern Rhodesia, now Zambia 1956-1969, where he was elected the first President of the United Church of Zambia. He became known for his passionate and outspoken views on political and social issues and was a close friend of President Kenneth Kaunda, with whom he worked in the negotiations for Zambia's independence. To his surprise, he was invited to become minister of Wesley's Chapel, London in 1970 and so found himself unexpectedly invoolved in the move to save and restore it. He became General Secretary of the Overseas Division in 1975 and was President of the Conference in 1976.
In 1978 he joined the BBC and became widely known for his provocative contributions to 'Thought for the Day'. He became Head of Religious Broadcasting and from 1987 to 1991 was Controller of BBC Northern Ireland during the period of 'the Troubles'. A prolific writer on preaching, on popular theology and on the media, his many books include Include Me Out (1968) , Raising the Dead (1996) and Things Shaken - Things Unshaken (2006). Throughout his supernumerary years he provided a series of thought-provoking articles to the Methodist Recorder.
He died at Lewes on 20 May 2018.