We thank John Caton for providing this webpage with his sketch of St Mary's Church, Highfield Street (circa 1890). The original St Mary's chapel was built in Edmund Street in 1725, which was at this time the wealthiest part of the town of Liverpool. But by 1800 slum housing had encroached on the wealthy merchants houses. The richer people who could afford it moved to St Anne Street. By 1840 the chapel had become too small for the needs of the parish. The services of architect, Augustus Welby Pugin, were secured and in 1844 the foundation stone was laid for a new church, which could accommodate 3000 people. The completed church opened on 18th August 1845 but it is however of some debate as to whether the new church stood in Edmund Street or in nearby Key Street. In 1883 the site of the church was purchased by the Lancashire & Yorkshire Railway Company, and an order was given to demolish the church for the building of Exchange Station. The church was pulled down 'brick-by-brick' and under the supervision of Peter Paul Pugin it was rebuilt in Highfield Street and opened in 1885. Tragedy struck the church in world war two when the church was severely damaged by blitz bombing and this fine building had to be demolished.
Our thanks go to John Kehoe for providing this issue of the Scottie Press with some photographs we feel sure will bring back many memories to former parishioners of St Mary’s Highfield Street. Pictured above are a group of youngsters who were taken on a coach trip to Blackpool is the 1950s.
Also pictured are members of various football teams dating from 1966 to 1973. We welcome hearing from readers who do have memories of the photos and who may have other such photos for inclusion on the Scottie Press website’s Archive webpage St Mary’s Highfield Street Parish.
John Kehoe tells us that the Reunion Night he organised on the 30th October 2004 (at the Silvestrian Club) was so popular and enjoyable, he will be organising another later in 2005.
Past and present residents of the St Mary's Highfield Street parish area gathered together on Saturday 30th October 2004 for a Reunion in the Silvestrian Club. The evening was spent enjoying opportunities to meet old friends and neighbours, schoolmates and fellow church parishioners. A wall display of old photographs attracted a lot of attention and conversation as did the showing and sharing of old photographs.
We welcome hearing from past and present residents of the St Mary's Highfield Street area who may wish to add their old photographs to those we feature on this webpage.Email firstname.lastname@example.org
We also thank Margaret Donnelly for providing this photograph which Margaret believes pictures part of a parish procession marking the opening of St Mary's Highfield Street Church in 1953. This church replaced the older church which had been destroyed by blitz bombing. We welcome hearing from readers who may wish to add their memories to this photograph which with the photograph we can add to our Archive section 'St Mary's Highfield Street' webpage.
We have recently added Margaret Donnelly's May Procession memories of Holy Cross Parish to the Archive section 'Holy Cross Parish' webpage. To access this webpage click here.
Photographed prior to 1941 are children from St Mary's Highfield Street school who made their First Holy Communion at the church of St Mary Highfield Street.
St Mary's Highfield Street church was founded in 1707 by the Jesuits as the first Catholic church in Liverpool after the Reformation. It stood in Edmund Street on what was then a narrow path outside the then Town of Liverpool. This church was known as St Mary of the Quay. It was in 1845, with the rising importance of the Town of Liverpool that a new St Mary's church was built and once again it was sited in Edmund Street. In 1885 this site was needed for the expansion of Liverpool's Exchange Station and the church was removed piece by piece and then reassembled in Highfield Street. This church which was designed by Augustus Welby Pugin was destroyed in the 1941 Blitz.
The replacement St Mary's Highfield Street church which many readers will know was opened in 1953. It closed in 2001 and demolished in 2003 thus ending hundreds of years of Catholic worship on the site.
Pictured above are the St Marys CYMS Billiards Team 1923-1924
The Scottie Press has begun archiving the history of St Mary's Highfield Street church and parish and we welcome any photographs that readers consider would be helpful to this project. We will be featuring St Mary's Highfield Street Parish along with other local Parishes on the Archive section of this website.