The 1930s: Two Sisters walking down Holt Road past the ‘Welcome Centre’, probably about to turn into the Shrine gardens through the ‘Brandie Gate’, or perhaps into ‘Stella Maris House’ next to it. At that time the house had a door on to the road, which can just be seen on the right of this picture.
The story of the Sisters in Walsingham divides neatly into two parts - before and after 16 April 1947.In 1924 Fr Patten approached Mother Sarah of the Community of St Peter, at Horbury in Yorkshire, for help in running the new Hospice [what is now Stella Maris House] and generally assisting with duties in the Shrine. She agreed, and first sent Sisters Veronica (the senior), Marguerite and Grace. Over the years these Sisters, and the others who followed, became much loved in the village and Shrine, and were an enormous help to Fr Patten.In 1930 the Community suffered an internal division which resulted in Mother Sarah's moving most of the sisters to Laleham in Surrey (from where the Walsingham sisters then came, rather than from Horbury as at the beginning). Harmony between Fr Patten and Mother Sarah continued until Fr Patten began to think in terms of establishing a permanent autonomous House in Walsingham, breaking away from the Laleham Community.