Sir William Pickles Hartley - Philanthropy


Hartley was a Primitive Methodist and applied his Christian principles to business. In 1888 he built a model village at Aintree; the following year he introduced a profit-sharing scheme, the results each year being announced at a special ceremony, with music and speeches. He claimed that the wages he paid to women and girls — four-fifths of the workforce — were appreciably higher than those of his competitors; he also provided free medical treatment. He personally chose his managers and trained them, sending them on advanced chemistry courses at his own expense nearly £300,000. He preferred to donate part of any sum requested, so as to encourage others to give. He endowed a number of hospitals in Colne, Liverpool, and London, and financed departments at Liverpool and Manchester universities. Equally generous to Primitive Methodism, he supported an organization for building chapels, acted as treasurer of its missionary society, and converted the old Holborn Town Hall into its national headquarters.

In 1896 the Primitive Methodists created the Hartley lectures in recognition of W. P. Hartley's work, the inaugural lectures were given in 1897.

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