Wilkinson, John, of Keighley
fl. 1742

A journeyman shoemaker who was the first Methodist, the first class leader and the first local preacher in Keighley. In 1742 he heard John Nelson preach at Adwalton, invited him to Keighley and agreed to form a class there. But he believed he could be saved by regular church-going and Bible-reading, until a friend from Birstall introduced him to the doctrine of justification by faith. As one of 'Mr. Grimshaw's men' he preached in the upper Aire valley and was instrumental in the conversion of Thomas Colbeck, his neighbour.

  • J.W. Laycock, Methodist Heroes of the Great Haworth Round (1909) pp.19-21