Article on St Hugh’s College being established at Tollerton Hall

Last updated on 20 September 2019

This article was published in the Catholic Herald in 1948:


A Junior Seminary, the first in the diocese of Nottingham, was opened on Wednesday last at
St.Hugh’s College, Tollerton Hall, Nottingham, by Cardinal Griffin, Archbishop of
In his address, the Cardinal said that a seminary was not merely a place of study; It was first
and foremost a place of training. He went on to say ” To-day is therefore a red-letter day in
the history of the diocese of Nottingham, when it is starting the most important work in the
“The opening of this college today is, in fact, an open challenge to the materialism of the
world. It is because we realise that the things of God come first that no effort whatever has
been spared, or will he spared, to secure the very best in the training of future priests of this
Nearly £5,000 was raised by a three-day fete held in the grounds of Tollerton Hall, from
Thursday to Saturday of last week, when thousands attended from all parts of the diocese.
Three bishops took part, Bishop Ellis of Nottingham opening the fete on Thursday; Bishop
Petit of Menevia on Friday and Bishop Beck, Coadjutor Bishop of Brentwood on Saturday.
Bishop Ellis stated that the Hall was bought two years ago for £21,000. At ‘least another
£20,000 was needed to cover the cost of alterations and repairs, in addition to the £31,000
he had received from the people of the diocese in the past two years.
Twelve months ago the centuries old hall was derelict and the grounds in disorder. Since it
ceased to be a manor house in the 19th century it had been a congregational training
college, a country club, and occupied by Forces units.
Now as St. Hugh’s Seminary, the hall is almost complete, with desks and blackboards and
bright and airy dormitories. Every one of the 45 rooms has been redecorated, the roof recovered, and showers, baths, fluorescent lighting and other up-to-date equipment installed.
The rector of the Seminary, the Rev. C. A. Gryce, who has been superintending the
preparations, told me that the college will eventually hold 50 students.
At present 26 students are at the hall, and 15 of them have been for the past year at St.
Mary’s Junior Seminary, Islandilo, in the diocese of Menevia. The remainder are new
diocesan clerical students.
A further short piece in the Catholic Herald three years later stated ….
ENGLAND’S youngest seminary – St. Hugh’s College, Tollerton, Notts, opened three years ago
– is growing so quickly that stables have had to be turned into classrooms.

Also, please check out the web site of the Hugonians. It has some wonderful pictures of the Hall when it was St Hugh’s.