No. 2 - The Deddington Chapel

Built in 1840, this Chapel located at Deddington, Tasmania is on land gifted from Robert Pitcairn. Brothers Robert and Thomas Pitcairn arrived in Hobart, Van Diemen's Land on the ship "Portland" on 10th September 1824 holding letters of Recommendation. It comprises a simple painted brick chapel, built around 1840, with gabled roof; the front elevation has central double doors with two narrow recessed panels at the side. The sides are divided into three bays with plasters and frieze and the windows have mullion and transom in the form of a cross.

Thomas received a "Grant of Land" of 640 acres at Mills Plains, now Deddington, where he took up occupancy in 1826.

The Chapel was built by Public Subscription on this "Gifted Land" with Land Ownership being transferred to "The Residents of Deddington", in 1849. The Church was opened on the 10th. May 1841 on land presented by Robert Pitcairn to the residents of Deddington and was financed by subscribers who paid 30/- annually for a pew and 5/- for a single seat.

The design and erection of the chapel is now considered the work of The Presbyterian minister Rev. Robert Russell at Evandale and Robert Pitcairn Esq. the donor of the land on which the chapel is built. Research continues on the identity of the man who undertook the construction of the building, thought to be one Williams; he was a ship carpenter who is reported to have constructed several chapels in N.S.W. and was in the Deddington area at the time.

From 1865 the Chapel began use as the Local School and continued for this purpose until 1885. It was again used for the same purpose in 1912.

Major restoration work on the building was undertaken by the National Trust of Tasmania in the 1960's with assistance from local residents and further maintenance was completed by the Chapel Trustees in 1999.Ongoing maintenance is always needed and this has included Grave restoration, fencing, landscaping and Chapel signage.

The graves present include Colonial Artist John Glover and his wife Sarah (nee Young) and their sons Henry & John Richardson Glover.

Regular services have not been held in the Chapel for many years. The last time the Chapel fulfilled its original function was a candlelit marriage ceremony in August 2002. There is no electricity connected to the building.

Regulations: Because farmers were in the habit of lighting up their pipes whilst taking their horses from the stables at the back of the Chapel, it was minuted in 1898 that "It is unanimously agreed the meeting disapproves of any smoking on the Church premises and that it will be prohibited." One of the first "smoke free" areas in Australia? There was no water connected to the chapel then as now.


(derived from www.evandaletasmania.com and http://www.deddingtonhistory.uk/tasmania/nilechapel)









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