Tony also included some photos of Birkdale (Southport) and writes:

"Conspicuous by its absence on the Pelican's site is Birkdale.
It may not have been around too long (It was a parking lot when
I was there in 1998) but I thought a photo or two wouldn't hurt"

(Source and commentary: Tony Smyth)

"The 27-29 block which was the main area of the 'complex' .
Unfortunately I cannot find a photo of #31 which housed the chapel and meeting rooms".

(Source: Tony Smyth)

Weld Road, Birkdale

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(Source and commentary: Tony Smyth)

"The inhabitants of Birkdale in 1971:
Back row:     Ghislain ?, Claude Duchesne, Michel Nolin, Tony Smyth
Middle row:   Jacques LaCroix, José ?, Pat McKinlay, Gilbert Bélanger, Bernard Tremblay.
Front row:     Frs: Julien Papillion, Roger Labonté, Mike Targett.
I do not recall the significance of the things being held by each party".

Question: Is anybody in contact with the people in this photo?
If so, would they kindly direct them to this Page and encourage these old friends to get in touch. Tony has found Jim McKinlay via

In response Tony wrote:

"Birkdale (29 Weld Rd, actually 27, 29 & 31) was meant as a replacement for Broome Hall.

A group of us (mostly Canadians) did our Spiritual Year there under the direction of Frs. Mike Targett (Superior), Julien Papillion (Canadian) and Roger LaBonté (American) in 1971/72.

There was no Spiritual Year there the following year, I do know that, but if there was ever again I really don't know.

Mike Targett and I travelled to Canada together 30 years ago last month (August). Mike was on staff at Vanier/Eastview for two years before returning, I believe, to Ghana.

The photo I sent was taken fairly early in the year. Of the 12 persons (including staff) we were 2 Englishmen, 1 Scotsman, 1 American, 1 Spaniard and 7 Canadians. We lost the Spaniard and one of the Canadians fairly early on. Only one, that I know of, Bernard Tremblay was ultimately ordained a White Father. He is from Chicoutimi, Quebec; he did his theology at Totteridge but where he is currently located I do not know.

Gilbert Bélanger (from Espanola, Ontario) was planning to be a WF brother and did a year in Strasbourg before leaving and returning to Canada. I understand he passed away in the late eighties but unfortunately have no details on that.

Michel Nolin, Jacques Lacroix and Claude Duchesne were in Vanier with Mike Targett and myself but I believe all three left before I did.

Fr. Roger Labonté went back to Uganda in 1973 and Fr. Julien ('Pap') Papillion remained at Birkdale to 'take care' of the place".

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(Source & commentary: Tony Smyth)

"Birkdale was a very 'Open' house. We often had guests come to stay whether
they were members of the Society or relatives or simply friends.
The above photo was taken at the time when Jim McKinlay, his wife and daughter were visiting.
( It appears there were others visiting that day too, but I can't recall who they were.)
I don't believe either Jim or Pat have seen this photo yet but now that I have contact
with Jim I will send him a copy plus a few other that I took at the time".

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(Source & commentary: Tony Smyth)

This photo was taken at the 'Camp Lavigerie'' re-union in 1995.
Br. Jim Heinz was the director of the camp in the latter years until
its close in 1975 when the White Fathers sold the property
(at least most of it.)

We are all indebted to Tony for the substantial contribution
that he has made to the website - sincere thanks, again,
and to all who continue to supply me with material.