A landmark anniversary was celebrated in Barrow in 2003.

Dozens of people attended St Matthew’s Church in Harrogate Street to mark its 125th anniversary and toast its future.

In as service of ‘thanksgiving, celebration and looking forward’ with special guest, the Dean of Carlisle, the Very Rev Graeme Knowles, there was a variety of hymns and readings, as well as prayers a collection for the youth pastor fund.

Friends and families of the Parishes of St John, St Luke, St Mark and St Matthew, said they enjoyed the service, which celebrated the church’s consecration in 1878.

Four years later in 2007 St Matthew’s celebrated the 40th anniversary of the consecration of the church, which had replaced the original building at the site in 1967.

St Matthew’s was due to be visited by two bishops to mark the occasion and two books about its history would be launched.

One was the bishop of the remote British protectorate of St Helena in the Atlantic.

The church had been built to replace an older one.

The celebration was due to start with a talk by church warden Alan Williams and the launch of his book about the history of the church. The book cost £4.

Later the same day a former vicar of St Matthew’s, Canon Bill Kelly, would tell the story of Canon Bill Bucks, who presided over the acquisition of a new church for the parish.

He had a book on that history, costing £2.50.

Canon Bucks was also responsible for getting the daughter church, St Francis in Ormsgill, built.

There was to be a choral evensong when the Bishop of St Helena, the Rt Rev John Salt, who was once a curate at St Matthew's, would preach.

A Sung Eucharist the following day would be presided over by the Bishop of Burnley, the Rt Rev John Goddard.

And there would be a 40th anniversary banquet in the St Matthew's Community Hall in Highfield Road.