No. 133 - Mowbray Heights Presbyterian Church - 'At the End of the Line'

On Saturday 4th February 1927, the foundation stone was laid for a new Presbyterian Church Hall at Mowbray Heights. Although it was initially built for the purpose of holding Sunday school classes, the intention was that it would later be used for church services and eventually a full church would be established.

The land was bought on Button Street, which was close to the tram terminus. The Presbyterians had also considered Newstead as a site for a new hall and this was eventually accomplished in 1941 when a church was opened there.

The laying of the foundation stone for the Button Street church hall was reported in both the The Daily Telegraph and The Mercury:

“The hall…would first be used as a Sunday school, and later also as a church. Promises had already been received of attendance at the Sunday school, where Methodists, Baptists, and others might gather, in that they would simply be taught the Scriptures, there being no denominational teaching”.

Expressing his gratitude, the Moderator, Reverend G. E. Harrison said:

“In these days of indifference, apathy, and pleasure-hunting the hall would come as a reminder and as a reward to those who served God”.

The hall indeed came to serve as a church and its ministers brought an international flavour to Mowbray, hailing from the New Hebrides (Rev. Paton) and Holland (Rev. Roodenburg). The building became a social hub with weddings, meetings of the Women’s Guild, the Mowbray Red Cross Branch, kindergarten, concerts and of course Sunday school classes and of course church services.

The Mowbray church is now closed as it was one of many closures arising from church amalgamations in the 1970’s and 80’s.



Photograph: Duncan Grant 2018

Photograph: Duncan Grant 2018

Photograph: Duncan Grant 2018

Sources:

The Mercury Monday 6 February 1928, page 3 
Daily Telegraph Monday 6 February 1928, page 7

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