A visit to the Birmingham Oratory

As the CHICC team near completion of the second batch of archive material, a few of us were invited to visit the Birmingham Oratory. This was a wonderful opportunity for the team to put the material into context and learn more about Cardinal Newman himself. Brother Joseph and Daniel Joyce gave us a tour of the Oratory and let us in on its history.

Pictured: The Cloister


We were fortunate enough to be shown Cardinal Newman’s room, in which he lived and worked until he died at the age of 89. The room remains in its original condition.

Pictured: Cardinal Newman’s room:

NewmanRoom1 NewmanRoom4 NewmanRoom3 NewmanRoom2

We were shown The Cardinal Newman Library, which Newman founded in 1848 and made significant contributions to throughout his lifetime. We spent some time viewing pieces of interest including those with original medieval bindings and we discussed conservation issues surrounding these items.

Library1  BookEx2BookEx1 JimCarol1 Library4  Library2

Pictured below is the remainder of the Newman archive awaiting digitisation, minus the fifty boxes already digitised or currently held at the John Rylands Library. As you can see, we will be kept busy for quite some time yet!


Pictured below: The Newman Chapel

Chapel2 Chapel1

Pictured: The Oratory Church:


Finally, a trip to Birmingham Oratory isn’t complete without honorary tour guide, Pushkin the cat, a firm favorite with visitors!


Thank you to everybody at the Oratory for making us welcome, the visit was thoroughly enjoyed by all. For more information about the Oratory, you can visit their website here.

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