Lytham St.Annes Coat of Arms
Lytham St.Annes, Lancashire, England


St.Annes Express, 15 August 1905


Sunday marked a rare event in the history of Fylde Catholicism, for at Lytham, on Sunday, the twin brothers, Fred and Harry Gillett, sons of Mr. Gillett, of Queen-street, were ordained to the Catholic Priesthood by the Right Rev. Dr. Whiteside, Bishop of Liverpool. The ceremony of twins being ordained is unique in the Fylde, and the ceremony is only the second in the Fylde since the Reformation, the first one being twelve years ago; then also at Lytham.

The Right Rev. the Bishop of Liverpool (Dr. Whiteside), a Fylde native, officiated at the ceremony, and in the service his lordship was assisted chiefly by other priests belonging to Lytham families. These, excepting Father Brown, perfect of studies at Usshaw College, were the Rev. Fathers R. Dobson, professor of moral theology at St. Joseph's College, Upholland; A. Dobson, Ince; John Walmsley, Birkdale; John Bonney, Wavertree; and Mark Bonney, Liverpool.

There were also at the altar the Revs. Henry and William Gornall, of Westhaughton, who are also twins, and cousins of the Gilletts, and who will be ordained shortly; the Rev. T. Dobson, of St. Joseph's College; as well as Messrs. W. Cookson, A. Ward, and T. Forshaw, students at Usshaw. The trainbearer to his lordship was Master Joe Hodgkinson, who is shortly to enter college. The ceremony was very imposing and impressive.

At the evening service the Bishop gave an address upon the high office and duties of a priest. His lordship remarked that since the Rev. Canon Taylor came to the pastorate there had been no less than nine of the congregation ordained to the priesthood, and he commended the congregation for the sacrifice they had made for many years in contributing sufficient to meet the yearly educational expenses of one student.

The sermon was followed by the Benediction, and at the close the congregation went to the altar rails to receive the blessing of the newly-ordained priests.