On 7 April 1927, in an editorial in the Millennial Star, the Church officially announced the movement away from the use of ‘Conferences’ as denoting a geographical territory of the church, and instead identified ‘District’ as the correct term to refer to administrative geographical units.
At the turn of the century, the British Mission was divided into fourteen ‘Conferences’. On 12 November 1903, it was revealed in an editorial, exactly what those boundaries were.
Map 1: 1903 Conference Boundaries
THE BOUNDARIES OP THE BRITISH CONFERENCES.
There has been in the past some confusion regarding the boundary lines of the conferences of the British mission. The matter has therefore been considered carefully, and as much as possible the conferences have been made to correspond with counties, the boundaries of which are well known. In many cases a conference will embrace a number of shires. In the Midlands, however, the county lines cannot always be observed, as the conferences are established independent of them, and it must be decided arbitrarily what the boundaries are.
Naturally the Scottish and Irish conferences are well defined, as they correspond to these divisions of the nation. To the former, it should be remembered, belong the Hebrides, Orkney and Shetland Islands. Beginning in the south of England, the Bristol conference embraces Gloucester, Somerset, Wilts, Dorset, Devon, Cornwall and the Channel Islands.
London embraces Kent, Sussex, Surrey, Hants, Berks, Oxford, Buckingham, Bedford, Hertford, Essex and Middlesex. The Isle of Wight of course belongs to the London conference.
Norwich contains Suffolk, Norfolk, Cambridge and Huntingdon.
Birmingham includes Hereford, Worcester, Warwick, Northampton, Stafford, and Shropshire.
The Welsh conference embraces the whole of Wales and also Monmouth.
Nottingham includes Derby, Leicester, Nottingham, Rutland and the part of Lincoln lying south of a straight line drawn from the south side of Gainsborough to the south side of Mablethorpe.
The Grimsby conference includes the part of Lincoln lying north of the line just described and contains therefore Gainsborough, Louth and Mablethorpe. Grimsby also includes East Riding of Yorkshire and the little corner of West Riding lying on the east side of the River Ouse and containing the city of York.
The Sheffield conference is made up of the southeastern part of West Riding, Yorkshire. It is separated from the rest by a line running straight from the junction point of Derby, Chester and York northeastward to the west side of Wakefield and on to the Calder river, then following the Calder river until it joins the Aire, and following the Aire until it flows into the Ouse.
The Leeds conference includes the remainder of West Riding and the whole of North Riding, except a small part lying north of a straight line drawn from the south side of Yarm to the south side of Whitby.
The part above the line just described, together with Durham, Northumberland and Cumberland, belongs to the Newcastle conference. Manchester includes Chester and that part of Lancaster that lies within straight lines drawn from the east side of Warrington to the south side of Darwen, and from that point to the south side of Bacup and on to the boundary of the county.
The Liverpool conference has the remainder of Lancaster, including Warrington, Darwen and Bacup, together with Westmorland and the Isle of Man.
These boundary lines may in some respects be new, but the conference presidents are requested to observe them. If any changes in the membership records are necessary, they can be accomplished by communication between the presidents of the contiguous conferences. Each conference should possess a map on which its boundaries are distinctly marked, and its division into branches should also be made plain.