Our church was started by a school. That is quite unusual, in fact we think we are the only Church of England Church in the country that was started by a school.
The School is Belgrave St Peter's and it was started by a Church St Peter's in Belgrave Village.
The Vicar of Belgrave Revd Stephens (no relation) decided to start a school in his vicarage on Vicarage Lane in 1850. This was to provide something for the children of Belgrave to do. The school, which was known firstly as 'The National School', was very popular and moved to its own premisis on Loughborough Road later on in the 19th Century. Later, the school became known as Belgrave School.
In the 1970s the school moved to its current location on Thurcaston Road. It changed its name to Belgrave, St Peter's in the 1990s to link it together with its church.
Sadly in 2011 the Church closed and shortly afterwards the school went through a difficult time and was rated 'Requires Improvement' by Ofsted.
The new Headteacher, Mrs Kenney worked hard with the staff to bring the school back to a more stable place. In time Ofsted ranked the school as a 'Good' school. Then she looked for ways to make more of the schools Christian Values and Foundation. The main problem was that Belgrave St Peter's was a church school without a church.
Several things were tried, at the time Mrs Kenney asked Simon Stevens (Mr Yellow) a local minister, who was working with 5 local churches to help them to think about mission, to come to the school and help them with their Christian Distinctiveness. When all the things that were tried did not quite work and after conversations with the Diocese, it was decided that the school would start its own Church. As a result we work much closer together than Church schools normally do with Churches. Many of our services take place during collective worship and Mr Yellow sits on the governing body of the school. That's how we started and we are excited to find out what comes next!<