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A Brief Parish History
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Fr. J. R. Kane took up residence and Mass was said for some months in his house. He was followed in the same year by Fr. C. E. May, and in 1897 by Fr. H. Fitzgerald. At this time Mass was said first in a classroom of King Richard's Road Board School, then in a warehouse in Noble Street, where a small house was rented for the priest.Canon Caus with Altar Servers 1920

Fr. Felix May served from 1899 1902, and Fr. Michael Griffin from 1902 1903.

The next resident priest, who became the first Parish Priest, Fr. (later Canon) Francis Isidore Caus, was, in the words of Bishop Brindle, "practically the founder of this Parish of St. Peter."

Born in Elst, Belgium, on June 7th, 1868, Fr. Caus was a seminary student at Alost in 1892 when Bishop Bagshawe visited the seminary to try to recruit priests for the English Mission. Fr. Caus came to Nottingham,where he was ordained on Rosary Sunday, October, 1894. After service at St. Augustine's and St. Patrick's, Nottingham, and at Whitwick and Lincoln, he came to St. Peter's in the Spring of 1903, and was subsequently appointed Parish Priest on February 13th, 1905.

Fr. Caus immediately set about the task of providing the Parish with a permanent Church. Early in 1905 he organised a magnificent Bazaar which made a profit of over £500. As a result of this and other efforts, the foundation stone of the new church was laid in the presence of a great crowd by Bishop Brindle on June 13th, 1905.

St. Peter's Church, designed and built by a Parishioner, Mr. F. J. Bradford, who lived in King Richard's Road, was opened on October 15th, 1905.

The new church was the scene of a Mission to Non Catholics, which was given by Fr. John Filmer, who had previously been a clergyman in a Protestant church in Leicester.

School accommodation was provided by the Sisters of the Convent of The Nativity of The Blessed Virgin Mary.

Later, the Presbytery was completed in 1925 a cost of £1,250.

Canon Caus died on January 18th, 1931, leaving the Parish free of debt the church, presbytery and land had all been paid for.

Fr. Vernon Whiteman was appointed priest in charge temporarily, and was followed by Fr. John Toomey, who left in February, 1932.

The next Parish Priest, Mgr. R. Barry Doyle, arrived in 1932 after an illustrious career both as an Army chaplain, during which he served on every battle front and was decorated by all the Allied Powers, and as an International organiser for post war relief for children in the Near East.

He began the formidable task of providing a Catholic School and had plans prepared for a school costing some £12,000. Towards this he organised an Empire Fair at Blackfriars Hall, for which he enlisted the assistance of Bishop McNulty, Lady Mary Savile, Lady Odin Pearse, and many of the leading clergy of the Diocese.

However, he was not to live to see his plans realised, as he was called to his rest in March, 1933. His funeral was on March 11th, in the presence of the Bishop and fifty priests.

Canon Henry A. Hunt, a native of Leicester, was appointed in March, 1933. The altar of St. Peter's Church as a gift from his father.

Fr. (later Canon) John Farmer came in 1934.


 

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