Visit by Duke of Gloucester

Fr Michael and Bishop Pat Lynch were delighted to welcome the Duke of Gloucester 11th April.  The Duke’s visit marked the completion of work to replace 175-year-old roof-slates and tons of weathered stonework on our historic church.

Members of the parish heritage group led the Duke on a tour of the church interior, including the newly-formed exhibition. As a former architect himself, the Duke also took a close interest in photographs of the church refurbishment work, discussing these with the architect and the representative of the main contractor. All wearing hard hats, the party went on to the upper hall of Pugin Place, originally designed in 1858 as the parish school by Edward Pugin, eldest son of Augustus. His splendid hammer-beam roof was admired in spite of the risk from the fragile 160-year-old plaster between the rafters. The Duke wished the parish well in their efforts to raise funds for the refurbishment of this hall, to restore it for community use.

Afterwards Fr Michael said “It was great to have the importance of our parish history and heritage recognised by this royal visit. The Duke also gave a wonderful morale boost for our efforts to bring Pugin Place back into full community use”.

See more pictures in our photo gallery.