Fam­ily ties to new home

Southern Gazette (South Perth) - - Victoria Park -

WHEN Ta­mara Mor­timer of Vic­to­ria Park was de­cid­ing where to buy her for­ever home she had no idea it would be next to the iconic Art Deco Angli­can church where her ma­ter­nal great grand­par­ents mar­ried 78 years ago.

The mid­wife has bought one of 34 apart­ments un­der con­struc­tion on a land par­cel ad­ja­cent to St Peter’s Church in Leonard Street, Vic­to­ria Park, the sale of which will en­able re­fur­bish­ment of the her­itage-listed build­ing.

The Rev­erend Ge­orgie Haw­ley said the sale of the ad­ja­cent land, where two rec­to­ries and a partly con­demned hall once stood, meant the church’s leaky tiled roof could fi­nally be re­placed.

“It (the res­i­den­tial devel­op­ment) means a lot. It has taken us a cou­ple of years to get it through the ap­provals process. It means that now we won’t have to have buck­ets around the al­tar when it rains,” Dr Haw­ley said.

“In win­ter the rain comes through the win­dow, down the cru­ci­fix and drips onto the al­tar. It can be very dis­tract­ing when I’m de­liv­er­ing a ser­vice,” she said.

“We plan to open the church up more to the com­mu­nity in the fu­ture which will be ex­cit­ing.”

Funds will also re­move old steps that are a haz­ard to users, with Dr Haw­ley say­ing even she “did a sixer” one day when she tripped on them while wear­ing her of­fi­cial robes.

Ms Mor­timer said she was look­ing for­ward to mov­ing in to her apart­ment in about May 2016.

“There’s some­thing spe­cial about a church on a hill. It’s fan­tas­tic. The devel­op­ment means the church can still take pride of place in Vic­to­ria Park,” she said.

Her great grand­par­ents’ orig­i­nal mar­riage cer­tifi­cate shows painter and bach­e­lor Ernest James Dal­ton (27) and shop as­sis­tant and spin­ster Elsie Jean Har­ris (19) were mar­ried on Fe­bru­ary 6, 1937.

Dr Haw­ley said the church held about six wed­dings each week be­tween the 1930s and 1960s.

Plans for the St Peter’s re­de­vel­op­ment will be avail­able at a com­mu­nity day at the church on Sun­day.

Pic­tures: David Baylis

The Rev­erend Dr Georgina Haw­ley and Ta­mara Mor­timer with her great grand­mother's mar­riage cer­tifi­cate. Right: St Peter’s Church will be re­fur­bished with prof­its from the land sale next door.

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