Dingley family

The Dingleys, a farming family at Linkinhorne, near Callington, Cornwall, were leading members of the Launceston Methodist church. Richard Dingley was one of those who founded the British School there in 1834. John Dingley, a partner in a local bank, was a local preacher and the trustee of local chapels and was mayor of Launceston. Dingley Hall at Launceston Methodist Church was named after the family.

William Dingley (d.1883), came to Sherborne, Dorset as a young man in 1821 and established a successful drapery business. As a Circuit steward, local preacher etc. for nearly half a century, he provided support and leadership for the small WM society in the town. He secured the site for the chapel opened by Dr. Robert Newton in 1842. The premises were enlarged and renovated after his death as a memorial to him. He became a trustee of thirteen chapels in the Sherborne Circuit and his brother Samuel of six. He married Grace Pearse of Launceston.

Their two sons, Edward and Alfred, continued the family business and followed in their father's footsteps, holding many offices in the church and circuit, and in the local community. Alfred was the leader of a flourishing adult Bible class, secretary of the Yeatman Hospital, a manager of the British School and a county alderman.

Alfred's son, John Dingley, continued the family drapery business in Half Moon Street and was very active in the life of the Methodist church. Another son, Dr. Edward Alfred Dingley, born on 27 February 1860, studied medicine at University College Hospital, London and became a much loved GP in Wednesbury, West Midlands. He held many offices in the local church, including President for many years of the Adult Bible Class and of the Wednesbury Temperance Society, and served on the connexional Class Leaders Committee. He wrote a number of hymns, including 'O for a closer walk with man'. His son, Lionel Alfred Dingley, FRCS, born 1888, was a surgeon at the West Bromwich & District General Hospital and a circuit steward.

The family contiued its close association with the Sherborne church into the 20th century.