The parish began after the Second World War when many areas of the city had been devastated by bombing. Many families were moved to new areas of the city where new homes were being built. A large pre-fabricated estate of some 1,200 dwellings was established in Gateacre and Childwall Valley.
In 1947 Richard Downey (Archbishop of Liverpool) appointed Fr. Martin Burke to establish a new parish to satisfy the spiritual needs of the large Catholic community that was beginning to take shape.
As there was no Catholic Church in the area Mr. Royden, the vicar of the Anglican Church St Stephen’s, kindly gave permission for Mass to be said in the school in Gateacre Village. The first Mass took place there on 4th May 1947. A new pre-fabricated Church of Our Lady of the Assumption was blessed and opened by Archbishop Downey on May 29th 1949, on Childwall Valley Road.
The 1960’s saw the continued growth of the parish with new houses being built in the Lee Park Estate and Childwall Valley Estate, replacing most of the pre-fabricated homes. At this time, private homes were also being built in the Gateacre Park Drive estate.
By this time, the small pre-fabricated church was too small for the needs of the large community. In 1963 Fr Henry McCaffie asked a parishioner to bet the Sunday collection on a horse called Curry; when it promptly won the proceeds of £3,000 paid for the land on which the church, parish club and presbytery would all sit. The new church was opened by Archbishop Beck on 29th March seating 750 people and at a cost of £200,000. With the continued growth of the area, the Parish was divided into three and two new parishes were created; St. Cyril of Jerusalem in 1968 on the Naylorsfield Estate and St. Gregory’s in 1970 on the Netherley Estate.
Our Lady’s, St Cyril’s and St Gregory’s parishes were dissolved in 2005 and the church became part of a larger parish of St John Almond with St Cyril, St Gregory and St Paschal Baylon. St Cyril’s closed in 200 and. St. Gregory and St. Paschal Baylon closed their doors in 2011. At this time the church once again became the Parish of Our Lady of the Assumption. Today the new parish incorporates Netherley, Childwall, Gateacre and Belle Vale with seven thousand houses and a population of fifteen thousand people.
Rev Philip Inch 2008-2015 (St John Almond, and from 2011 Our Lady of the Assumption)
Rev Stephen Pritchard 2015-present
St Cyril, Netherley: Parish established 1967
Rev John Phelan 1966-1980
Rev John Grady 1980-1982
Rev James Matthews 1982-1986
Rev Anthony Callaghan (Deacon-in-charge) 1986-1992
In 2005 it became part of St John Almond Parish that included the churches of Our Lady, St Cyril, St Gregory and St Paschal Baylon. Church closed in 2009.
St Gregory: Parish established 1970
Rev Michael J Ryan 1970-1982
Rev Patrick J MacNally 1982-1989
Rev Paul Glover 1989-1993
Deacon Rev Lawrence Prior 1993-1999
From 1993-1999 it was part of the Montfort Missionaries’ team ministry with Our Lady of the Assumption and St Cyril’s. Subsequently served from Holy Family Church. In 2005 it became part of St John Almond Parish that included the churches of Our Lady, St Cyril, St Gregory and St Paschal Baylon. Church closed in 2011.
Parish Priests of the former parish
Rev Martin Burke 1947-1952
Rev George Hickson 1952-1957
Rev John Carr 1957-1962
Rev Henry McCaffrie 1962-1969
Rev Martin Ring 1969-1991
In 1991 the parish was accepted by the Montfort Missionaries, who had a team ministry with St Cyril’s and (later) St Gregory’s
Fr Sean O’Haire 1991-1995 (Society of Montfort Missionaries)
Fr J Frederick Mathews 1995-1999 (Society of Montfort Missionaries)
Rev William Murphy 1999-2008 and formed a new parish dedicated to St John Almond.
The parish of Our Lady of the Assumption was closed in 2005 and the church community became part of St John Almond Parish. The new parish was opened in 2011.