A brief introduction to the Parish of Our Lady of Fatima, Quinton
The parish had its beginning during the 1930's when new housing was started on what had previously been mainly farm land, about five miles west of the city centre of Birmingham. The housing was a mixture of private building for sale - mainly two- and three-bedroomed semi-detached homes and Council houses for rent, built to re-house people whose homes were being demolished in the City Centre areas. Due to the start of the second World War in 1939, however, building ceased.
The Passionist Order, then at St Mary's Harborne, laid the foundation for the Parish at Quinton by acquiring a piece of land in Higgins Lane to build a church sometime in the future. After this, however, the area was served by the priests of St Hubert's (Wolverhampton Rd, Warley). A little later, Fr O'Dougherty used the Community Centre on Ridgacre Rd (now the Quinborne Centre) which was then a temporary structure, as a Mass Centre. The first parishioners, of whom there were not many, also hired the Community Centre to hold jumble sales, whist drives to raise funds.
In the period 1952 -1955, the Parish Hall was built.in Higgins Lane. This was a dual purpose building for both church and social activities. The Sanctuary was fitted with a sliding partition which was opened for Mass and other services, Benediction etc but could close the altar off when the Hall was to be used for Parish functions. A small detached house was also purchased in Higgins Lane to serve as the Presbytery.
In 1955, the first Parish Priest, Fr Henry Bouchier arrived and Our Lady of Fatima was formally established as a Parish. The original debt for Hall and house was approximately £11,000 (a great deal of money at that time).
In 1967, the Infants and Primary School was opened, situated about half a mile outside the Parish Boundary near Hagley Rd West in Winchfield Drive. As this was somewhat awkward with regard to travelling, a private school bus was contracted to convey the children to and from the school. Mr Maundrell was appointed the first head teacher.
Shortly after the school opened, suddenly and quite unexpectedly, the parish became much enlarged by the decision of Birmingham Council to build a new estate on the Woodgate Valley which had hitherto been declared a "green-belt" area which was not to be developed. The last farm in the area was forced to close and building commenced. This covers the land to the rear of Quinton Rd West to the South and extends from St Boniface Church to Four Dwellings School.
In 1977/78 the present church was built next to the original hall, and was consecrated on 7th October 1978 by His Grace, George Patrick Dwyer, Archbishop of Birmingham.
A more detailed history, compiled by an anonymous parishioner, is available from the parish.