Family ties to new home
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.
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.