No. 105 - The Russell Street Holy Trinity Mission Hall - Mission Possible

There have been two buildings associated with churches in Russell Street Inveresk. The earliest was a Tract Society and Christian Instruction Society connected with Reverend Charles Price’s Tamar Street Congregational Church. The Congregationalists built a chapel-cum-hall in Russell Street in May 1858. This seems to have fallen into disuse and became used for local community meetings until the Baptists restored it and used it for mission purposes in 1912. This building had also been used by the Anglican community before the opening of the Russell Street Mission Hall in 1894.

The Anglican Mission Hall was associated with the Holy Trinity Church in the city and was used as a Sunday school, for community mission activities and for worship until 1930 when it was replaced by the Church of the Holy Family which opened on Holbrook Street.

The Launceston Examiner reported on the opening of the Mission Hall in February 1895:

“The new Russell Street Hall built in connection with Holy Trinity Church parish was opened last evening by a social, which was attended with much success. The building was designed to accommodate those attending the Mothers' Union and girls' sewing class there being forty members of the former. It will also be used as a Young Men's Club and Sunday school. The Venerable Archdeacon Hales performed the little opening ceremony”.

The Mission Hall was used extensively for community work such as temperance work. In 1916 the Examiner reported on the work of the Mission:

“The old established mission in connection with the Holy Trinity Church has carried on for many years temperance work at Inveresk, which has been a great factor in the uplifting of the residents and much of the apparent improvement in the lives and homes of the people is due in a large degree to the continuous, patient work which the regular meetings of the society involved. The first meeting of the season was held on Tuesday in the Russell Street Hall and attracted an overflowing audience, which enjoyed the excellent entertainment provided by the members of the Band of Hope. A varied programme of songs, recitations, and dances was submitted and carried through, under the conductorship of Miss Norman, who must have spent a considerable time in training the juvenile performers”.

In 1916, land was purchased on Holbrook Street for the building of a church to serve the Inveresk and Invermay Anglican community. Over the next decade the Russell Street Hall was the focus of numerous fundraising events to pay for the new Church that eventually opened in 1930. The Russell Street Mission Hall, which had served as a church for almost 40 years, now took on the role as a community and church hall.

The building is listed on the Tasmanian Heritage register and has now been converted into a residence.



Photograph: Duncan Grant 2018
Photograph: Duncan Grant 2018

Photograph: Duncan Grant 2018

Photograph: Duncan Grant 2018

Photograph: Duncan Grant 2018

Sources:

Theo Sharples; Congregationalism in Tasmania 1830-1977
Examiner Wednesday 12 June 1912
Examiner Tuesday 28 November 1916
Examiner Thursday 8 July 1926
Examiner Saturday 2 February 1895
Saturday 1 February 1930
Geoffrey Stephens; The Anglican Church in Tasmania; 1992.

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