Thursday, 21 July 2011

Mill Hill - St Barnabas de-frocked

We are endeavouring to have a conversation about renewable energy in Australia at the moment, and wind-farms are much in the news. With this in the back of my mind, come with me on a meander through the 'Mill Hill' area of Bondi where Henry Hough established his Hope Farm, on which he built a mill in 1845, it eventually being demolished in 1880. Many of the buildings in this area have been demolished several times over, but there is still sufficient to get the general flavour.

This is the former St Barnabas Church of England, which has been converted into three townhouses. Built in 1902 in ecclesiastical Gothic style, the church was an impressive brick chapel with bell cradle. It caused no end of angst to the congregation of St Matthias in Paddington when this parish was hived off from its eastern boundary to service the burgeoning Bondi area. It was deconsecrated in 1986. Church conversions are all the rage in country NSW, but as I wandered this small city enclave, I discovered two such conversions.

9 comments:

Ann said...

I've got a pic of one in Kogarah which has been turned into offices and is now part of a new development. Don't think I've used it yet, must put it up.

Julie said...

When I think of it, there is another in Jersey Road, Woollahra. I suspect that every second church could be so converted and the remaining churches would still only be less than half full!

Kay L. Davies said...

I'm sure you're right about the sizes of congregations, Julie.
When we were first house-hunting in our small town, the Catholic church was for sale. I pointed out to my husband that it would be a good deal: it could be converted into three condominium apartments. He laughed at me, but, sure enough, someone bought it and converted it into three apartments.

—Kay, Alberta, Canada

J Bar said...

It's great that these building are retained and recycled rather than be demolished.

Jayne said...

How lovely!
To get a brand new apartment but with such history and old world style would be the best bargain :)
Would love to see how the conversions look inside.

Joan Elizabeth said...

I really like apartments in reused old buildings. It has all the benefits of fresh brand new and old character when done well.

Joe said...

Not sure if Icould live in a church conversion. Too many sermons bouncing off the walls.

Peter said...

At least better than the wrecking ball

Rae Walter said...

Julie, your posts on the area are very interesting. If time allows when I am next in Sydney I will enjoy a wander through here. Thanks