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The Catenians were established in Manchester in 1908 at the behest of Louis Casartelli, the then Bishop of Salford

For the first two years the Catenians were known as The Chums Benevolent Association, and its original and essential characteristics were typical of many male societies established in the period before the First World War.

Bishop Casartelli was one of a number of Bishops who were anxious to see Catholic communities break the bonds of restricted education, low social status, and limited political power and influence.

They acknowledged that the Chums, and later the Catenians, were a force for good and a vehicle for action.

The name Catenians derives from Catena, the Latin word for Chain. Each member is seen as a link upon which the strength of the whole chain depends.

The Association spread rapidly across the UK but did not become established offshore for almost 50 years. Overseas growth in recent years has been rapid.

We now have some 10,000 members in Africa, Australia, Bangladesh, India, Ireland, Malta and The Holy Land as well as the UK.

Salisbury Circle was inaugurated on 14th March 1972. The inaugural meeting was held in the Salisbury Guildhall with the meal afterwards being at the Red Lion Hotel. The Circle then moved to the White Hart Hotel where it met for several years until the hotel suffered a serious fire. A short spell then followed with the Circle making use of St Gregory’s Church Hall before moving to the Pembroke Arms Hotel in Wilton. The circle then moved to the Milford Hall Hotel and then to the Grasmere House Hotel, Harnham, and in July 2021 we returned to the White Hart Hotel.


In December 2015 we celebrated our 500th meeting, and in March 2022 we celebrated our 50th anniversary.

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