South West Wales

Philosopher Richard Price still relevant today, claims author

Benjamin Franklin
Image caption Price knew one of the foundig fathers of the US Benjamin Franklin (left) when he was the member of a dissenters' group in London in the 1760s

A trust has been set up to examine the leading Welsh 18th Century moral philosopher Richard Price.

Born in 1723 in Llangeinor, Bridgend, Price rose to prominence preaching in the leading radical non-conformist chapels in south Wales and London.

The trust's founding member Martyn Hooper believes Price's moral code is still relevant today.

"Price would've had very, very strong views on the morals of the banking crisis and the MPs' scandals," he said.

"He would've considered these as wholly wrong. We want to regenerate interest in him because we feel he's been forgotten about.

"His moral philosophy was based on on what's right and wrong."

History says Price, who died in 1791, was a man ahead of his time.

Price was a friend of one of the Founding Fathers of the United States Benjamin Franklin and he supported the American colonists who rose in rebellion against the English crown.

This was considered radical for the time and Price declared himself to be a "citizen of the world".

Author Mr Hooper, who hopes the trust will gain charitable status, began studying Price's work 10 years ago.

"Events have happened and I became aware of the relevance of today's occurrences with the work of Richard Price," he said.

"For example, the Arab spring - Price would've had really quite solid views on that.

"We're looking at the morals within social and business life and Price would've had very, very strong views on the morals of the banking crisis and the MPs' scandals.

"So his work in incredibly relevant today and yet he's almost certainly forgotten about by the general public."

The Richard Price Trust will meet every month to discuss his work.