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Miles Atkinson (1741-1811)

Miles Atkinson was born in Ledsham, Yorkshire, the son of Christopher Atkinson, the evangelical rector of Thorp Arch in Yorkshire. He was educated at home and Peterhouse Cambridge. After graduation in 1763 Atkinson became Curate of Leeds Parish Church and headmaster of Drighlington School. In 1768 he was appointed lecturer at Leeds and was firmly converted to evangelical views by reading Doddridge's Rise and Progress of Religion in the Soul. In 1771 he joined the Elland Clerical Society and was one of its first tutors of ordinands.

Atkinson was morning lecturer at Whitchurch near Leeds (1773-80), Rector of Walton on the Hill in Lancashire (1780-88), Vicar of Leek (1785-1803) and of Kippax (1783-1811) where he established Sunday Schools for over 2,000 children. He also built St Paul's Leeds and served as its first minister from 1793 to 1811.

Atkinson's sons Christopher and Thomas both followed him into the ministry.

Source: Dictionary of Evangelical Biography, edited by Donald Lewis (1995)

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