A brief history of St.Aidan's Church
The Grand Opening
As the Revd.W.Cox intended the Mission Hall was opened on Thursday, July 8th 1909. The following account is taken from the Express & Star newspaper for that day.
St. Philip's Mission, that very hasty addition to the landscape of Mount Road, Penn Fields, was formally opened this (Thursday) afternoon by Mr. H.Staveley-Hill, MP, who had made a special journey from London, after an all-night sitting in the House of Commons, in order to be present. He was accompanied by his wife.
The hall is a very comfortable three week's work. It is light and airy, but so far destitute of furniture. The seats, the desk, the organ were all on loan; but when the Vicar (Rev.W.Kipling-Cox) was revealing this secret Mrs Staveley-Hill reminded the member for Kingswinford of the reading desk from the old Bushbury Church which is stored away at Oxley Manor, so that this part of the furniture will be supplied very soon.
There was a good attendance. The Vicar made it clear that a great deal of interest had been taken in the new hall, the opening of which is part of the jubilee of St.Philip's. Contributions had been received from the richest and poorest, one road in Bradmore, which could not hope to benefit from the mission, furnishing 30 contributions. Although the building has only now been erected, the ground was purchased some six years ago at the suggestion of the far sighted vicar, who foresaw the development of the district, and was anxious that the new community should have a place of worship. It has cost £200 and will accommodate 200 people. £60 has still to be raised.
The probable reason that the Member for Kingswinford opened the church is that, at the time, it was in the Kingswinford constituency. The parliamentary business that had so delayed Mr.Staveley-Hill seems to have been the Finance Bill although Mr.Staveley-Hill's name does not appear in Hansard for the day.
Accommodating 200 people in a hall the same size as today's church (which was built on the same foundations) seems remarkable.