Our Lady and the English Martyrs (Catholic Church)
History of Our Lady and the English Martyrs
According to Pevsner, the church was built 1885-1890 by Dunn and Hansom of Newcastle. It was paid for by Mrs Lyne-Stephens, as the parapet inscription proclaims. She was formerly Yolande (Pauline) Duvernay, an operatic dancer; her late husband’s fortune came from patenting dolls’ eyes that could move. In its time it was a controversial assertion of the Catholic presence in Cambridge.
Pauline Duvernay in 1888
More information about Stephen Lyne-Stephens can be found here.
E.M.Forster, the Longest Journey, 1907:
They wait for the other tram by the Roman Catholic Church, whose florid bulk was already receding into twilight. It is the first big building that the incoming visitor sees. ‘Oh, here come the colleges!’ cries the Protestant parent, and then learns that it was built by a Papist who made a fortune out of moveable eyes for dolls. ‘Built out of dolls’ eyes to contain idols’ – that, at all events, is the legend and the joke. It watches over the apostate city, taller by many a yard than anything within, and asserting, however wildly, that here is eternity, stability, and bubbles unbreakable upon a windless sea.
General information can be found on Wikipedia.
Rattee and Kett completed the construction of the Catholic church in 1890. The photo is of their workers.