JOSEPH'S ROMAN CATHOLIC CHURCH
Catholics had no place of worship before 1860 in Todmorden. The
faithful would undertake the journey to Bacup or Rochdale for services
and Mass. From 1860 a Priest came from Halifax to hear confessions
at Knowlwood, Walsden, and in 1864 they gathered together to rent
a room over an iron foundry in Salford, Todmorden, where Mass was
first taken in the town. Two years later, they moved to the Oddfellows
Hall in Todmorden.
real beginning of St. Joseph's was in 1868 when they moved to rented
premises at Back Ridge Street. The congregation wished to purchase
land on which to build their own church, but sadly, there was great
prejudice in the town, the result of which was that they were forbidden
to buy any land. Undaunted, the members approached Lord Townley
of Burnley, himself a staunch Catholic, who commissioned his own
land agent to purchase a piece of land on Ridge Street in Todmorden
on behalf of the Todmorden Catholic congregation.
began on a school and church in 1873 and was completed in 1876.
The school opened first, followed by the church 4 months later.
1928, the church was in urgent need of repair and it was deemed
practical to build a new one, partly because the congregation had
outgrown the building. A site was procured on Wellington Road and
in April 1929, the new church was opened. The old building was used
as a Men's Club and the school rooms were used for the Boy Scouts
until the Second World War. The old church then became an air raid
shelter and was finally demolished at the end of the war to make
way for the Todmorden Community College. (Calder College).
church still has a Primary School attached to it today. There is
no burial ground. The Church was and is licensed for marriages.