Barriers to help protect old church
RESTORATION of one of Australind’s iconic sites is back on track after Harvey Shire Council approved funding for a safety barrier last week.
On behalf of the Bunbury Diocesan Trustees, the Church of St Nicholas restoration committee submitted a request to install pedestrian fencing within the Paris Road road reserve to help protect the historic church.
The building was significantly damaged in 2007 and again in 2012 following vehicle impacts.
Earlier this year the church received $10,807 through the Heritage Council’s grants program to restore the building, however, in the submission to the council the committee advised they had “resolved not to proceed with this work until we can be assured that the church will be protected by the black safety fencing”.
The committee offered to contribute $5000 towards the expected $27,500 of fencing, which will act as a buffer between traffic and the church.
Committee chairman Kerry Hawley said the funding “is an answer to a prayer,” though he credits committee member Suzanne Saunders with the submission she wrote to the council, which included photos of the damage.
“Once they (councillors) saw the damage that occurred, I imagine it helped sway their decision,” Mr Hawley said.
The church was built in 1844 and is listed on the shire’s Municipal Heritage Inventory and the State Register of Heritage Places due to its significance as an intact example of a colonial dwelling, and due to its connection with families significant in Australind’s history such as the Cliftons, the Allnuts and the Narroways.
“It is a valuable historic record of the past and it is a part of Australind’s heritage,” Mr Hawley said.
“Apart from its heritage value, it also has value as a place of blessing.”
The estimated $27,500 – minus the contribution from the church – will be allocated in the 2018/ 2019 financial year budget.
Church of St Nicholas restoration committee chairman Kerry Hawley is pleased the restoration can go ahead.