ST. HILARY'S, WALLASEY – period between the old and new churches.
What's been bugging me is this: St. Hilary's Church, Wallasey was burned down in February 1857 and the new church was consecrated in July 1859. So in the meantime where did the parishioners go for their services and to be hatched, matched and despatched? I’ve ploughed through the local History
books I have, but can’t find a mention.
One thought is that the Ship Inn (which was used for Coroners’ inquests) may have been used; another that it could have been the school house in Breck Road (which was owned by the Church). But wouldn’t these or any other building have to be consecrated to hold services and ceremonies there?
Presumably burial services could have been performed outside in the churchyard, despite building work going on. However, I doubt that marriages and baptisms would have been carried out in the open air. I've looked at the parish registers for marriages and baptisms and they continue during the 'churchless' period as though nothing had happened. The only vague references to what was a major disaster, are two margin notes made by the Rector - a marriage on 25.8.1859 has "First marriage in the New Church"
and a christening on 2.8.1859 has "First baptism in the House".
In the marriage registers during the period there are occasional references to a particular marriage ceremony being performed at St. James', New Brighton. If so, why aren’t they recorded in the St. James’ registers? All very confusing!!
Any suggestions gratefully received. Not exactly earth-shattering but one of those little itches that could do with scratching!