The Buddhist Society of Manchester was founded in 1951.

Through contacts with the Buddhist Theravada tradition, one of their number, W. Purfurst, travelled to Thailand and ordained as Kapilavaddho Bhikku with Luang Pu Sodh Candasaro, also known as Phramongkolthepmuni, the abbot of Wat Paknam Bhasicharoen.  Kapilavaddho maintained contact with the Manchester group and provided instruction via tapes and written materials before his eventual return to the UK. Russel Williams joined the society in 1957.