St. Stephen's Presbyterian Church (former) | NSW Environment & Heritage

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St. Stephen's Presbyterian Church (former)

Item details

Name of item: St. Stephen's Presbyterian Church (former)
Other name/s: St Stephen's Presbyterian Church
Type of item: Built
Group/Collection: Religion
Category: Church
Location: Lat: -34.6488707734 Long: 150.7743067720
Primary address: 2 Allowrie Street, Jamberoo, NSW 2533
Parish: Kiama
County: Camden
Local govt. area: Kiama
Local Aboriginal Land Council: Illawarra
Property description
Lot/Volume CodeLot/Volume NumberSection NumberPlan/Folio CodePlan/Folio Number
LOT200 DP1071808
All addresses
Street AddressSuburb/townLGAParishCountyType
2 Allowrie StreetJamberooKiamaKiamaCamdenPrimary Address

Owner/s

Organisation NameOwner CategoryDate Ownership Updated
WANGARUKA HOLDINGS PTY LIMITEDPrivate 

Statement of significance:

Constructed in 1875, St Stephen's Presbyterian Church Jamberoo is of significance for its reflection of the settlement, focal point and community development within the Jamberoo Valley area. St. Stephen's is associated with prominent local figures and constitutes significant milestones and consolidations in the growth of their communities. St. Stephen's is of architectural significance with its Norman-derived detailing and of landmark significance to the township of Jamberoo.
Date significance updated: 04 Jul 08
Note: The State Heritage Inventory provides information about heritage items listed by local and State government agencies. The State Heritage Inventory is continually being updated by local and State agencies as new information becomes available. Read the OEH copyright and disclaimer.

Description

Designer/Maker: John Colley
Builder/Maker: John & James Marks, D.L. Dymock, W Stewart
Construction years: 1875-1875
Physical description: Site:
St.Stephen's Cemetery lies behind the church and adjacent to the Anglican and Uniting Church Cemeteries. The site is mown bare except for a small patch of crocus bulbs in the centre. A large blackberry bush which has engulfed several monuments dominates the south-west section. The stone church and large Araucaria pine trees form an appropriate back drop, which includes a small besser block amenities block. There is no evidence of early layout (National Trust of Australia (NSW), 1985).

A cemetery on this site dates from 1859 (AHMS, 6). A white weatherboard house, formerly the early church is at the rear of the stone church (from a 1903 photograph). This was still extant in 1963 (AHMS, 13, 14). The area to the rear of the 1876 church contains a small toilet block, the remains of an early cemetery on the site and a tree line which is set out as an indicative eastern boundary to the burials. The evident cemetery monuments are restricted to the western side of the rear allotment with both marble and sandstone stelae represented. Historical evidence from the 1860 cemetery regulations suggests that they were purposefully set out from the south and along the western boundary from an early period.

The tree line eastern 'boundary' of these burials runs north to south approximately 10m east of the western allotment boundary which is represented by a post and rail fence. All visible monuments of the Presbyterian cemetery are contained within the area bounded by this tree line and the western fence.

To the east of this tree line is an open grassed area with some faint undulations observable in the surface. The distance from the tree line to the east boundary of the allotment is approximately 20-22m.

Closer to the church is the area which anecdotal evidence suggests may contain unmarked children's graves. This area also shows evidence of substantial disturbance from sewer lines associated with the toilet block and septic tank (AHMS, 19).

Situated at the western end of Jamberoo and enclosed by a timber picket fence to its Allowrie Street frontage and enclosed by a timber picket fence to its Allowrie Street frontage, St Stephen's and it grounds, which include mature camphor laurels (Cinnamomum camphora), bunya pine (Araucaria bidwillii) and Norfolk Island pines (A.heterophylla) are a distinctive element of Jamberoo's townscape, prominent in the western approach to the town from Churchill Street (Heritage Council, Branch Manager's Report, 26 September 1980).

Church:
Stone-built country church with a square tower, porch and vestry. Distinguished by Norman-derived detailing (Latona Masterman, 1987, 96).

Church with a simple rectangular plan, square-based tower incorporating the entry to the building at its eastern end and a small attached vestry at the western end. It construction employed coursed sandstone rubble with dressed quoining and weathering to buttresses and the tower's battlemented parapet. Openings feature simple label-moulded semi-circular heads. Internally, finishes and furniture are of local cedar. The building's substantial trussed gable-ended roof with elegant barge decoration has undergone replacement of its original shingle cladding with Marseilles tiles (Heritage Council, Branch Manager's Report, 26 September 1980).
Physical condition and/or
Archaeological potential:
The existing tree line and the surveyed eastern boundary of the cemetery (compare figures 1.4 and 1.5) do not match and it is clear that there is substantial potential for burials to extend to the east beyond the tree line given the space within the indicated boundary and the known number of burials (i.e.49). Unfortunately the available historical information has not been able to provide an accurate or definitive indication of the position of the eastern boundary of the cemetery at the St.Stephen's site. Given the unknown extent of potential burials towards the east and the anecdotal evidence for child burials closer to the stone church it is proposed that test excavations be undertaken to identify the potential for burials in 3 places: 1. on the western side of the tree line; 2. on the eastern side of the tree line; 3. on the area adjacent to the toilet block (AHMS, 19).
Date condition updated:17 Mar 09
Modifications and dates: 1875 - Church constructed
1889 - square tower added
1984 - funding from Heritage Council for damp-proofing and associated works
Current use: none
Former use: Church, church school, Sunday school

History

Historical notes: The first white settlers came to the Jamberoo District during the 1820's following the initial granting of land rights, but it was not until the 1830's that the nucleus of a settlement evolved. Dr. Robert Menzies, a young Scottish naval doctor, and his wife Margaret, took up residence at Jamberoo on 6th May, 1839, in a small cottage on their recently purchased property. They, in common with a number of other pioneers from Scotland and from Northern Ireland, were of the Presbyterian communion. The importance they attached to their faith is illustrated by the fact that within a few months of their arrival Presbyterian services of worship were being conducted in Dr. Menzies' barn by the Rev. John Tait, MA, the first minister of the Church of Scotland in Illawarra. Mr. Tait itinerated from his home base in Wollongong as far south as the Shoalhaven from 1837 until his transfer to Parramatta in 1841. (Dr. Menzies built "Minnamurra House" in the early 1840's. It stands today. The barn in which the first Presbyterian service was held stood until 1940.

The township of Jamberoo was subdivided from Michael Hyam's grant in 1841. Mr. Hyam, a Jew, gave blocks to some of the Churches, including the Presbyterian. In 1842 a church-school was built by the Presbyterians on their land at a cost of $70. It was made of slabs and plastered inside being constructed in the main by voluntary labour. The building was used on Sundays as church and Sunday School; other denominations used it at times. On week days it served as a school. It appears to have been the first Church building in the southern Illawarra.

The Rev. Cunningham Atchison, who succeeded Mr. Tait in 1841, continued to minister to the whole of Illawarra and conducted services at Jamberoo as often as possible. Ministers of other denominations were also invited to conduct worship, and Dr. Menzies conducted the church services on occasions when no minister was available in Jamberoo.

The Disruption of the Church of Scotland in 1843 was followed by a Disruption in the Synod of Australia. The Jamberoo and Kiama Presbyterians gave their allegiance to the Free Church party and waited for their own minister from that Church. Until their minister arrived the congregation received strong leadership from Mr. Robert Taylor, a divinity student of the Free Church of Scotland.

The Rev. George Mackie, having arrived from Scotland, was inducted on the 24th October, 1849, at Jamberoo as Free Church minister of Leawarra and Shoalhaven, with Kiama as its centre. As the population grew, portions to the north and south were separated until the charge embraced only the districts centred upon Kiama and Jamberoo. Mr. Mackie exercised a fruitful ministry in the area until his translation to Victoria in 1857. He had resided at Jamberoo to late 1854 when he moved into the newly built Manse at Kiama.

The second Minister of Kiama-Jamberoo was the Rev. John Kinross, B.A., later D.D. Newly arrived from Scotland, he was ordained and inducted into the charge on 29th December, 1858, and proved to be an outstanding pastor as well as a scholar. In 1861 he married Elizabeth, one of the four daughters of Dr. Menzies. John Kinross never severed his link with the area, for, even after his translation to the office of the first Principal of St. Andrew's College, University of Sydney, in 1875, he spent the long vacations in his cottage overlooking the Jamberoo township and its people whom he loved. He retired to and died in this cottage on 16th October, 1908.

Early in the ministry of Dr. Kinross, 1862, the old Jamberoo Church was enlarged. In 1874 the congregation met and resolved to build a new and larger church to accommodate the increasing number of worshippers. Mr. John Colley, a member of one of the district's foremost pioneering families and a devout servant of the Church, drew up the plans and together with Messrs. John Marks, James Marks, D.L. Dymock, and W. Stewart superintended the construction of the present St. Stephen's which was opened and dedicated in the presence of over 1,500 people on Australia Day, 26th January, 1876. The total cost was (Pounds)1,060/19/1. The only debt remaining, that of (Pounds)70, was cleared at the opening by a generous gift by the Messrs. Marks. The Church furnishings are made from some of the finest cedar to be seen anywhere.

Following the opening of the new church the old one was repaired and incorporated in a Sunday School Hall. It was unfortunately destroyed by fire in 1972.

The strength of the Presbyterian cause in Jamberoo has diminished over recent years as has the population of this most beautiful, fertile valley. In 1970 services of worship ceased altogether and the Church building took on a forlorn neglected appearance. However, since the commencement of the present ministry in 1971 services have again been held regularly. It is the strong feeling of the present devout little band of spiritual descendants of the Presbyterian pioneers of Jamberoo that the Church will never again be closed.

On 5 May 1979 the Presbyterian Church of Australia nominated St Stephen's Presbyterian Church Jamberoo. A Permanent Conservation Order was placed over the Church on 6 April 1981. It was transferred to the State Heritage Register on 2 April 1999.

Historic themes

Australian theme (abbrev)New South Wales themeLocal theme
1. Environment-Tracing the evolution of a continent's special environments Environment - naturally evolved-Activities associated with the physical surroundings that support human life and influence or shape human cultures. Cultural - Coasts and coastal features supporting human activities-
1. Environment-Tracing the evolution of a continent's special environments Environment - naturally evolved-Activities associated with the physical surroundings that support human life and influence or shape human cultures. Changing the environment-
3. Economy-Developing local, regional and national economies Environment - cultural landscape-Activities associated with the interactions between humans, human societies and the shaping of their physical surroundings Developing local, regional and national economies-National Theme 3
4. Settlement-Building settlements, towns and cities Towns, suburbs and villages-Activities associated with creating, planning and managing urban functions, landscapes and lifestyles in towns, suburbs and villages Creating landmark structures and places in regional settings-
6. Educating-Educating Education-Activities associated with teaching and learning by children and adults, formally and informally. Private (religious) schooling-
8. Culture-Developing cultural institutions and ways of life Creative endeavour-Activities associated with the production and performance of literary, artistic, architectural and other imaginative, interpretive or inventive works; and/or associated with the production and expression of cultural phenomena; and/or environments that have inspired such creative activities. Architectural styles and periods - Victorian Gothic Revival-
8. Culture-Developing cultural institutions and ways of life Religion-Activities associated with particular systems of faith and worship Practising Presbyterianism-
8. Culture-Developing cultural institutions and ways of life Religion-Activities associated with particular systems of faith and worship Church-
8. Culture-Developing cultural institutions and ways of life Religion-Activities associated with particular systems of faith and worship Cemetery-

Assessment of significance

SHR Criteria a)
[Historical significance]
St Stephen's is an important reflection of the settlement, focal point and community development within the Jamberoo Valley area.
SHR Criteria b)
[Associative significance]
St. Stephen's is associated with prominent local figures and constitutes significant milestones and consolidations in the growth of their communities.
SHR Criteria c)
[Aesthetic significance]
St. Stephen's is of architectural significance with its Norman-derived detailing and of landmark significance to the township of Jamberoo.
Assessment criteria: Items are assessed against the PDF State Heritage Register (SHR) Criteria to determine the level of significance. Refer to the Listings below for the level of statutory protection.

Recommended management:

Recommendations

Management CategoryDescriptionDate Updated
Recommended ManagementProduce a Conservation Management Plan (CMP) 
Recommended ManagementPrepare a maintenance schedule or guidelines 
Recommended ManagementCarry out interpretation, promotion and/or education 

Procedures /Exemptions

Section of actDescriptionTitleCommentsAction date
57(2)Exemption to allow workStandard Exemptions SCHEDULE OF STANDARD EXEMPTIONS
HERITAGE ACT 1977
Notice of Order Under Section 57 (2) of the Heritage Act 1977

I, the Minister for Planning, pursuant to subsection 57(2) of the Heritage Act 1977, on the recommendation of the Heritage Council of New South Wales, do by this Order:

1. revoke the Schedule of Exemptions to subsection 57(1) of the Heritage Act made under subsection 57(2) and published in the Government Gazette on 22 February 2008; and

2. grant standard exemptions from subsection 57(1) of the Heritage Act 1977, described in the Schedule attached.

FRANK SARTOR
Minister for Planning
Sydney, 11 July 2008

To view the schedule click on the Standard Exemptions for Works Requiring Heritage Council Approval link below.
Sep 5 2008

PDF Standard exemptions for works requiring Heritage Council approval

Listings

Heritage ListingListing TitleListing NumberGazette DateGazette NumberGazette Page
Heritage Act - State Heritage Register 0012102 Apr 99 271546
Heritage Act - Permanent Conservation Order - former 0012106 Apr 81 522017
Regional Environmental PlanIllawarra REP No.1 11 Apr 86   
Local Environmental PlanSchedule 2 item 19 Jul 96   
National Trust of Australia register  315731 May 76   
Register of the National Estate - Interim 1504   

Study details

TitleYearNumberAuthorInspected byGuidelines used
Kiama Heritage Study1987 Latona Masterman  Yes

References, internet links & images

TypeAuthorYearTitleInternet Links
Tourism 2007St Stephen's Presbyterian Church View detail
WrittenAHMS Archaeological Heritage Management Solutions2008St Stephen's Cemetery, Jamberoo, NSW: Research Design
TourismAttraction Homepage2007St Stephen's Presbyterian Church View detail
WrittenChris Betteridge, Musecape P/L2005Heritage Assessment and Statement of Heritage Impact: St.Stephen's Presbyterian Church and Cemetery, Jamberoo
WrittenNational Trust of Australia (NSW)1985Classification Sheet: "Jamberoo Village Cemetery Conservation Area
WrittenSt Stephen's Presbyterian Church1976St Stephen's Presbyterian Church Centenary 1876-1976

Note: internet links may be to web pages, documents or images.

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Data source

The information for this entry comes from the following source:
Name: Heritage Office
Database number: 5045271
File number: S90/06025 & HC 32268


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