The Sisters of Charity, 1923-

A Convent was opened at 202 Walm Lane in 1913 by the Spanish Nursing Sisters, but it moved elsewhere in 1919.

More lasting were the Sisters of St. Vincent de Paul, now the Daughters of Charity. In September 1923

Fr. Arendzen asked the Order for a Parish Sister, and Sister Magdalen Walsh of the Wigmore Street Convent began travelling daily to Willesden Green. Her “wings” became a familiar sight. Sr. Magdalen was later described by Fr. Fitzgerald as a “remarkable woman who completely revolutionised the place, doing the work of at least two priests.”

In 1928 Dr. Vaughan procured premises at 6 St. Paul’s Avenue and on the 5th of May a small community of the Sisters, including Sr. Magdalen, opened a hostel there for young working girls. They also supplied Parish Sisters to neighbouring parishes.

In 1932 the Sisters moved to their present, larger house at 247 Willesden Lane; there they also gave hospitality to elderly ladies.

In 1940 they were bombed out, but continued their parish work from Kilburn. From 1942-69 they re-opened at Willesden Lane as a hostel for Catholic girls on probation. Since 1969, as a response to the Church’s stand on abortion, the house was converted into flatlets for unmarried mothers and their babies. The house is also well-known to the local homeless as a place where breakfast is never refused.

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