This weekend marks 200 years since the laying of a foundation stone for a church in North Shields.
St Cuthbert’s RC Church, between Bedford Street and Albion Road, will celebrate the anniversary on Saturday.
It was the first purpose-built Catholic Church outside of Newcastle, just two years after the Battle of Waterloo in 1815.
It catered for a congregation that travelled from Tynemouth, South Shields, Jarrow and Wallsend. Before this, the congregation had to walk, ride horses or even row up the river on a Sunday morning to attend Mass at Father Worswick’s Church in Newcastle.
Worswick played a crucial role in fundraising to build the North Tyneside church, which helped the town grow by sponsoring schools.
The original building, however, was demolished in the 1970s, but left a legacy throughout two World Wars, economic depressions and civil unrest.
It lives on in the form of St Cuthbert’s Primary School, St Joseph’s School and Church, St Thomas More’s School, as well as the new church built on Albion Road.
Do you have any memories of the church? Or did you attend any of the schools? Email sandra@thewholeforest