Fr Eugene Campbell (Parish Priest)
I was born in Bristol in1959, to Tom & Claire Campbell. I was the youngest of 3 children. My eldest sister is Ann and my brother is Tommy. I was Baptised in Our Lady of Lourdes Parish, Kingswood by Fr Purcell OFM. My mum and dad came over to England from Ireland in the late fourties. My dad was a die caster working in a Foundry, my mum was a Nurse working firstly with her sister Greta at Hortham Hospital, near Thornbury, and then in Frenchay Hospital, and Stoke Park where she return to nursing after having the three of us!
They moved to St Joseph's Parish when I was born and all three of us attended St Joseph's Catholic Primary School. After which Ann went to St Bernadette's in Whitchurch and Tommy and I went to St Thomas More Comphrensive School in Horfield.
I had an interesting time at school and was on many occasions described by Mr Brian O'Hara, the head teacher as a 'toad'! When I was due to choose my options at School, I wanted to do Home Economics, but that was reserved for the girls. After a number of meetings with staff it was agreed that Peter Hill and I would be allowed to do Home Economics! It was thanks to Mrs Heather Goddard, who agreed to teach us that we were able to do the subject. I remember cooking 'Pork in cider sauce', and making a 12" Christmas Cake! Mrs Goddard reminds me of the day when a School Inspector came into the lesson and was frightened to talk to us boys! It was great fun. I don't know what Peter is doing now, but when he left school, he did carry on with catering and went into the Navy as a chef.
I wasn't sure what I wanted to do, and after a few shop jobs, in Mickleburgh's the Piano Shop and Curry's, I dedcide to go into catering, working at Carwardines the coffee people at the top of Park Street, in Bristol. They sent me to what was Brunel Technical College on day release to train. I won a scholarship to study Cordon Bleu Cooking in Parish for 8 months. I still love to cook when I can.
The long hard hours took their toll on me and so I decided to have a career change andin 1979 I joined the Metropolitan Police Force, where I served for 5 1/2 years. It was exciting and very rewarding. I served in Central London at what used to be called Canon Row Police Station, from where I patrolled and served in the smallest Police Station in London, Wellington Arch. I served at Buckinghsm Palace and New Scotland Yard. It gave me a huge amount of experience and am priviledged to still be contact with members of the force and the Catholic Police Guild.
In 1984 I was accepted to Study at a pre-seminary run by the Jesuits, Campion House in Isleworth. That was a very reavealing year and prepared me my studies at St Mary's Seminary, Oscott in Sutton Coldfield. My time at seminary had it's ups and downs, with lots of time to discern my vocation. I was ordained deacon in 1991 and I was ordained to the Priesthood by Bishop Mervyn Alexander in St Joseph's Catholic Church on 25th April 1992. That was a very special day for me and my family.
My first parish was St Bonaventure's in Bishopston, with Fr Martin Fitzpatrick and Canon Ryan. I was also the Chaplain to St Thomas More's School and UWE, The University of the West of England.
From St Bon's I was resident at St Augustine's in Downend until I was appointed Parish Priest to St Vincent de Paul Parish in Southmead. I served there for 7 years, and then I was appointed to St Lawrence & St Paul Parish covering Chipping Sodbury & Yate. I was there for 6 years and just last year 2007 I was appointed to St Joseph & Teresa in Wells, before my appointment here in September 2008.
I loom forward to serving the people of Holy Family, Patchway and the 5 Stokes to the best of my ability.
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