Several years ago, local historian David Howe was kind enough to explore the history of the school, producing a book that told the story of St. Peter’s over 135 years. We have copies of this text available in school for anyone who wishes to read it.
Since the foundation stone for the new St Peter’s School buildings was laid in 1879, Education, reflecting society, has experienced many changes. However, at St Peter’s one thing has remained constant – the vision and work of the local Catholic community engaging its children in the process of experiencing, learning about and reflecting on Jesus’ good news, that we are loved by God and that love is central to human existence. Literacy, numeracy and technology are of course important but, essentially, our children need to learn what life is for and how to live it, and here the gospel offers both a vision and a challenge. Cardinal Hume asserted that education is only of value if it serves to make our children more fully human, echoing St Irenaeus’ saying that “the glory of God is the human person fully alive.”
At St Peter’s we have a community which is alive with love, cooperation, hard work and a desire to learn. I pay tribute to all those who over the past one hundred and twenty five years have built this community – parents and children, parish priests and parishioners, governors, teachers and all support staff. Few are mentioned by name in this document but the fruits of their work lives on abundantly today.
Finally, I would like to thank David Howe for agreeing to research and write the book. He has been wonderfully generous with his time, and his unfailing patience, courtesy and humour have opened doors, not only to convents and nursing homes, but to the memories of those who have agreed to share their experiences.