Rev. Dr Philip N Tindall MA, BD, PhD, M Litt. 1972 – 1974

Rev. Phillip Tindall and his wife Maud.

A complete contrast to John Storer, Philip Tindall came to Newcastle at the end of his career. A Yorkshireman, he was a lifelong Unitarian, a trained plumber and a serious academic. He was born in Pudsey on 31st December 1910 into a Unitarian family who were founder members of Pudsey Unitarian church. After study at Unitarian College and Manchester University he married Maud, and began his ministry at Altrincham. He worked in Sheffield, Liverpool and Ireland before taking up to pulpit at Newcastle in 1972 at the age of 62. At the same time he continued his academic work, culminating in the award of his PhD in 1950. During his earlier years he was also a tutor at Manchester College Oxford, one of our then two ministerial training colleges and now incorporated into Oxford University as Harris Manchester College.

It is, perhaps, our misfortune that Philip came to us late in life, when his reputation as a serious academic tended to distance him, although he was well liked by those of his generation. In his obituary in the Inquirer it was said, “…those of us who got to know him well in his later years, found a warm and and kindly friend with a ‘twinkle in his eye’ and a ‘mischievous streak’…”

After retiring, he was President of the Ministerial Fellowship in 1976, and in 1979, at the age of 69, he was awarded an M Litt from Newcastle University with a thesis entitled “The Manchester Socinian controversy, its background and sequel”. (The Socinian controversy was important to Unitarianism. It’s worth looking it up on Google.). He remained justifiably proud of his learning, reading books in their original Hebrew, Greek and Latin. He died on 7th January 2010, shortly after his 99th birthday.