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New Catholic Church

New Catholic Church - Opened by Bishop Brindle at Scunthorpe on 2nd December 1911

In common with other religious bodies in the town, the Catholic community have felt for a long time the need for increased accommodations, and as the result of a handsome grant from the Young Trustees it was found possible to commence the erection of a new church to displace the present iron structure. Led on by the enthusiasm of Father Askew, who worked hard for the cause since he came to Scunthorpe, various means have been devised of raising money towards the building fund.

In its completed state the new Church of Holy Souls forms quite a new feature to the architecture of the locality. The proportions of the structure are in accordance with the very best canons of art, and contain all that goes to make up a genuinely pretty church. The edifice is a little under 100 feet in length, and slightly over 30 feet wide. The walls are built of a rich plum-coloured brick, to match the Ruabon mouldings and tracery, the roof being slightly lighter in tint, and of a more roseate hue. The tower is particularly effective, being at once massive and elegant, sturdy and graceful. The top portion of this latter is divided into lancet lights, set in a deep rebate of receding mouldings, the actual panels being fitted with diaper open works in terra cotta. A well turreted battlement crowns the whole, and adds considerably to the sky line. The well-shaped porch is a distinctive feature of the edifice, and the nookiness of Our Lady's Chapel will be a great addition to the completed church. It is intended to accommodate some fifty worshippers, and will be divided off from the nave by a pleasing perspective of Gothic arcading. An elaborately carved altar is also part of the permanent scheme. The pulpit has an interesting local history, being procured for the Holy Souls' Church from the Frodingham Parish Church some years since. It is well outlined, and stands gracefully upon a small base, corbelled out towards the top. The structure is set well back from Frodingham Road, and this will allow for a verdant plantage to set off the red mural tones. Messrs Kirby and Son (Liverpool) are the architects, the builder is Mr J. Klauke, of Crosby, and Mr Ted Leaf, Scunthorpe, has been entrusted with the painting and decorating. The building reflects the highest credit on all concerned, and has cost £2,000.

The Opening Ceremony

The formal opening ceremony took place on Thursday morning by Bishop Brindle, D.S.C., Nottingham, the service being most solemn and impressive. High Mass was celebrated by Father Cossins, of Corby, Father Firth, of Crowle, and Father Ryan acting as sub-deacons. Father Brown (Gainsborough) was master of ceremonies, and Canon Browne (Derby) and Canon Hawkins (Grimsby) were the assistants at the throne. Other clergy present were Father Murphy (Hull), Father Hunt (Sheffield), Father Cook (Loughborough) Father Flannagan (Barton), Prior Smith (Crowle), Father Trollope (Worksop), and Father Askew (Scunthorpe). The service was the "Coram Episcopo" (in the presence of the bishop) and the Mass of Saint Cecily was beautifully sung. The soloists were Mrs McGregor, Mrs Chamberlain, Miss Seeley and Mr H. Dodds.

During the course of his sermon, subsequent to the opening, Bishop Brindle observed that there were a goodly number present who were not members of the Catholic Church, and he desired to say that he spoke with all sympathy for those who differed from his point of view and outside the pale of the Church. He had no desire to say harsh words against anyone, but on the other hand he felt bound to speak for the truth and for the faith that was in him. He congratulated the congregation on the completion of the church. He could only ask them, since God had blessed them, so they would return to Him the blessings which He had given them by faithful service so long as they lived to continue the traditions of the Church. They were apt to forget as they went through the world what they had received from Almighty God, and how greatly they were indebted to Him.

Fancy Fair Opened

In the afternoon a "fancy fair" was held. Lady Doughty had promised to perform the opening ceremony, but Father Askew announced that her ladyship was unwell and unable to attend. He then called upon Bishop Brindle to officiate, observing that they could not open it under better auspices - (applause). His Lordship expressed his pleasure at being present, and hoped the venture would be a success. The sooner they opened their pockets the better it would be for the stallholders. Mrs Calderbank presented his lordship with a silk biretta, and Mrs McGregor sang a solo, which terminated the proceedings. On Friday the bazaar was re-opened by Mr Joseph Franks, J.P., C.C.

  • The stalls were in charge of the following:

  • Fancy Stall - Mrs Calderbank, Mrs Whitty, and Mrs Sharp.
  • Crockery Stall - Miss Danson and Mrs Leaf.
  • Oriental Stall - Mrs and Miss Leaf.
  • Fancy-work Stall - Miss Lyons and Miss Meggitts.
  • Cake Stall - Mrs Wright, Miss Wright, and Mrs Kelly (Rotherham).
  • Toy and Sweet Stall - Miss Grasar.
  • Hoop-la - Miss Graham.
  • Bran Tub - Miss Whitty and Master H. Dodds.
  • Museum and Fortune Telling - Mr Harrison.