St Gabriel's Convent, Carlisle

St Gabriel's Convent

At the invitation of Father Patrick Begley, PP, the Sisters first went to Carlisle in 1937 to teach in the parish School of St Margaret Mary. It was opened in 3rd August 1938. In 1937 five Religious of the Sacred Heart of Mary were installed in a small terraced house in York Place, later known as Upperby Road, Carlisle, the first foundation so far north of the country.

Requests were made by parents for the foundation of a private school to cater for Catholic children for whom secondary education could be provided.  In 1939 a beginning was made. The Convent was named St Gabriel’s after St Gabriel of the Dolours, a Passionist priest, whose feast day it was. The school was opened on 16th April 1940.  By 1945 it was necessary to look for more property and in 1949 the secondary school was opened. In 1968 the Secondary school amalgamated with St Patrick’s School to form The Newman School. The Sisters continued to teach in St Margaret Mary’s and St Cuthbert’s Schools as well. 

In later years the Sisters were also involved in the work of School Chaplaincy, Parish Sisters, Catechetics in parish and school and Parish Visiting.  They also worked at Deanery and Diocesan Levels.  In 1981 the province set up a property in Carlisle called “The Life House” to Save the Unborn Child.

In all more than sixty sisters have lived and ministered in Carlisle teaching in St Margaret Mary’s School, St Gabriel’s School, St Cuthbert’s School, Newman School and St Aidan’s School.