It may not be well known that the image watching down on the West Front of the Shrine even from before the opening of the Holy House in 1931 was that of Our Lady of Paris, not, as one might have expected, of Our Lady of Walsingham.It is a flat cut-out image and was intended to be temporary, but was not replaced until 1966. In that year Fr Colin Stephenson, the then Administrator, gave in its place a statue of Our Lady Immaculate, to commemorate his Silver Jubilee of priesthood.Our Lady of Paris can be seen on the outside wall of what is now called the Pilgrim Hall, facing the east end of the Shrine church. The original image was recarved and gilded by Siegfried Pietsch in 1983, and restored again 2019.The fourteenth-century statue in the Cathedral of Notre Dame in Paris survived the disastrous fire of 15 April 2019.
September andOctober 1931just before the Translation
Fr Stephenson’s gift of a new statue in 1966
gilded and recarved by Siegfried Pietsch in 1983 photo in his studio