05 November 2009

Echuca's religious architecture

LivinginthePast in her excellent blog Who Will I Drink Tea With? invited guest bloggers to write a post on friendship, Australia, travel, teaching, education, being a student teacher or immigration. So I chose travel. To find my history of Echuca between its founding in 1853 and the end of its great building boom in 1880, visit Echuca: All The Rivers Run.

I covered all the bare necessities of mid-Victorian life in that article (pubs, paddle steamers, banks and brothels) but I totally omitted Echuca’s beautiful churches.

At Hare and Percy Streets is St Mary's Catholic Church (1865). The narrow, slate-clad spire was added by the architect E J Henderson in 1890, to the original building made from red brick with freeestone dressings. Just along Percy St is the town's oldest church, the Wesleyan (1865), although it has recently been purchased and may be demolished. Not far away is the Anglican Church (1865) which features a stained-glass window of its sponsor and Echuca’s first citizen, Henry Hopwood.



St Andrews (left) and St Mary's (above)
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Christ Church was designed by architects I have discussed before, Vahland & Getzschmann of Bendigo. The brick building took some time of course, starting in 1864. The transepts were begun in 1866 and the nave added in 1875. Vahland loved the small heavily buttressed Germanic apse that contrasted with the higher gables of the nave and transepts. Christ Church building was completed with a slate roof, lovely stained glass windows and a carved wooden altar.

On the corner of Pakenham and Hare Streets corner, St Andrew's Presbyterian (now Uniting) Church was built in 1889. St Andrews was built in Federation Gothic Revival style. Visitors notice the impressive flight of slate stairs leading to the nave, with curving balustrades and cast iron lamps; the steep and ornamental octagonal spire; and the glazed tilework.

3 comments:

J Bar said...

Great piece of architecture.
Sydney - City and Suburbs

J Bar said...

Great piece of architecture.
Sydney - City and Suburbs

Etier said...

Informative article and great photography!