Saturday, April 20, 2024

A Century of Support From the Connolly Family

In the run-up to the 250th birthday of the Jewellery Quarter’s St. Paul’s Church, a new fundraising effort aims to raise £250,000 for its 250th birthday. And local business Connolly’s Wines is supporting the campaign by holding a wine tasting event at the church and donating the proceeds from the event to the church.

Connolly’s Wine Merchants will hold the “Big Tasting” event at St Paul’s Church in the Jewellery Quarter on the evening of Thursday 25th November. Tickets can be purchased by going to Connolly’s website and the events page:

As owner Chris Connolly says, “It’s about being there for the church when the church has always been there for our family.”

Chris recalls that 100 years ago, his wife Tania’s grandparents were married in St Paul’s Church where her great-grandmother was, for many years, responsible for the church flower displays.
As night follows day, in 1951 Tania’s parents were also wed there. Tania herself was christened in the church.

Naturally, Chris and Tania kept up the family tradition when they were also married at St Paul’s Church in 1986.

When children came along, Chris and Tania also arranged for Abi and Ben to be christened at the church.

Connolly’s Wines agreed to help with the church’s fundraising campaign by holding one of their famous wine tastings in the church.

Chris says that when he was asked to support the church’s new fundraising efforts, he was always going to say YES: “When my family and my wife’s family have experienced 100 years of support from St Paul’s Church, of course we want to give our support to the church when it needs our help. Tania and I are delighted to be able to help the new fundraising campaign and we will be proud supporters of St Paul’s Church.”
Reverend David Tomlinson says Chris’s story is a reminder of the enduring nature of the church’s support for its parishioners:

“St Paul’s Church has been there for the JQ’s residents for nearly 250 years, sharing the joy of happy occasions, consoling families in times of tragedy and grief, and commemorating momentous events in our community. However, the precarious condition of the fabric of the church today reminds us all that we cannot be complacent that the church will always be there for us in the future without practical support. Our new fundraising campaign asks local residents and businesses to rally round and help fund the necessary works needed, just as the family of Chris and Tania Connolly are doing now. I am very grateful to all the Connolly family, and I hope others will feel able to follow in their footsteps.”

Being nearly 250 years old, the church needs consistent and significant spending over the next few years to retain its position at the heart of its community for centuries to come. From the launch of its new appeal at this August’s Bank Holiday fete, the church aims to raise £250,000 by the church’s 250th birthday in 2029.

A survey will be running through September and October Anyone can complete the survey online at:

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