A porch and a steeple ‒ the history of Clumber Church
Photo: Supplied Clumber Church, outside Bathurst on the Shaw Park road celebrates its 150th year anniversary this year. The main celebrations, which also coincide with the renovations to the church, take place from 20 to 22 October. Leading up to these, Grocott's Mail has been publishing a series by Courteney George Bradfield on the church's fascinating history. This is the third and final part.
With the congregation increasing, and the Church being in a poor state, the erection of a new Clumber Church had to be considered. In July 1860 with Purdon Smailes in the Chair it was passed that a Church of 45 feet by 20 feet should be built.
In July 1866 it was decided to incorporate a ten foot by six foot porch as well as a steeple. On 11 July 1866 George Wood MLC laid the foundation stone. Plans and specifications were done by George Jarvis, a draughtsman from Port Alfred.
The church was to have three windows on each side and stone walls of 14 feet high.
This height was increased to 16 feet in September 1866. Brislin and Mack tendered £162-15-0 for the masonry, plastering and materials and an extra £2-5-0 for the increased wall heights.
Charles Poulton tendered £90 including materials,for carpentry of the roof, floor, ceiling doors and windows. In November 1866 he also tendered 2s/6d each for the making of the yellowwood pews. In June 1916 a Vestry was added at a cost of £320.
Opened in November 1867, the church and school were proclaimed National Monuments on 23 November 1980. The South African Heritage
Resource Agency has granted the Clumber precinct Heritage Status - SAHRA Identifier Number 9/2/009/0014.
• Courteney George Bradfield attended Clumber Church, Clumber Sunday School and Clumber School in his youth. A descendant of Granville Glasson Bradfield, father, Edmund George Bradfield, grandfather, Jonathan Bradfield, Great Grandfather, Joseph Bradfield, GG Grandfather and John Bradfield GGG Grandfather, all buried at Clumber. He is the current compiler of the church website and Chairman of the church committee.
The Clumber Church.