Father Herbert Edwin William Slade, a priest of our English Congregation, died on 23 December 1999 at Haywards Heath, West Sussex in the eighty-seventh year of his life and the fifty-seventh year of his religious profession.

Born in Wiltshire in 1912, Father Slade graduated from London University and Dorchester Missionary College. He was ordained in 1935 and served a curacy in Gloucestershire. He came to our community at the Mission House in Oxford in 1939 and made his profession on 1 August 1942 together with Father Francis Dalby. Almost immediately after his profession he volunteered to serve as an army chaplain during the Second World War. He served in England, France, Holland and later India. He was discharged from the army in 1946 and returned to the Mission House in Oxford. In 1948 he returned to India where he was for a year at Poona and then after 1949 was Vicar of St Peter’s Mazagon, Bombay and then as Principal of St Peter’s School.  While in India he gained many insights into eastern spirituality. He returned to England in 1955 but ten years later returned to India where he assisted in closing down our work there. He is best known for his time at the Anchorhold at Haywards Heath, Sussex. In 1969 the Anchorhold was given to the Society and Father Slade and a number of companions established there a small self-sufficient community committed to blending Christian and eastern techniques of yoga, prayer and meditation. During this time he wrote a history of the Society in India entitled A Work Begun as well as several books on meditation and contemplative prayer. He frequently led retreats and workshops which introduced the principles of yoga and eastern meditation to a Christian audience. He is buried along with other members of our community, at Rose Hill Cemetery, Oxford.


  1. Peter Gilbert on November 4, 2018 at 15:34

    Thank you for this reminder of Father Slade. I visited and stayed at The Anchorhold several times and found it very helpful bith at the time and since. Memories of the place are always present during meditaion. I was sorry that it could not continue fpr long without Father Slade but hope that all those who I met there are thriving elsewhere.

    • Philip Roderick on August 29, 2019 at 12:12

      I spent some time at The Anchorhold in 1973 and then went off to live for a year in a Russian Orthodox hermitage with Fr Barnabas, before studying theology, becoming ordained and then being engaged in theological and spiritual formation in the Church in Wales and the Church of England. I would like to be in touch with anyone who was with Fr Slade in Haywards Heath in 1973.

      Thank you. Philip Roderick

    • Dare Cullen Jones FRSA on October 24, 2020 at 09:30

      Hello Peter

      A friend of mine from The Church of Wales told me about Father Slades work and this really interests me. I’m an Artist and dancer and I’ve spent numerous times on retreat in India at Tibetan Buddist Monestary and Sai Babas Ashram. I wonder if any one else is continuing his work elsewhere? I would love to hear more of your expirience at The Anchorhold.

      Thank you

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