No. 557 - Chudleigh Salvation Army Barracks

Chudleigh is a village near the Great Western Tiers which lies approximately 20 kilometres west of Deloraine in northern Tasmania. It was settled from the 1850’s but never developed into a sizeable town despite being connected by rail to Deloraine and Launceston in the 1890’s.

The Salvation Army arrived at Tasmania in the early 1880’s and established bases at Launceston and Hobart. The initial reception to the ‘Army’ was hostile and sometimes even violent. This was a reaction to the raucous nature of the Salvation Army’s gatherings as well as middle class prejudice towards the working classes who were attracted to its meetings. Noisy recruiting strategies such street processions led by brass bands and mass open-air meetings were regarded as disruptive by the authorities.

The Salvation Army appeared at Deloraine in 1883 [see No. 352] and by mid 1889 a corps was established at Chudleigh. A small weatherboard hall or ‘barracks’ was erected on Jones Street. While the ‘Army’ faced some opposition in Deloraine it was far more successful in Chudleigh where officers travelled around the district providing help for the sick and needy. For a time the two corps combined with Deloraine as the centre “but later this was reversed, Deloraine becoming the outpost, a much more effective arrangement”.

In 1922 the Salvation Army barracks at Deloraine closed and the building was removed to South Launceston. The barracks at Chudleigh remained in use until 1947 when it too was removed to Launceston. The building was taken to Invermay where it was used as a “Young People’s Hall” located behind the ‘Army’ barracks on Invermay Road. The old Chudleigh barracks still exist although the weatherboarding has been replaced and some windows removed which has significantly altered the building’s appearance.


The old Chudleigh Salvation Army Barracks now on Invermay Road. The building has new weatherboarding on two sides which has altered its appearance. Original windows and weatherboarding survive on the western wall of the building. (see photo below) Photograph: Duncan Grant 2018

The former Invermay Salvation Army barracks - now a workshop.  The Chudleigh barracks can be seen at the rear on the left of the photo.  Photograph: Duncan Grant 2018

The rear of the building which has had a garage door cut into the original weatherboard. Photograph: Duncan Grant 2018

The western side of the building - difficult to photograph - but clearly shows the original windows. Windows would have been on both sides of the original building.  Photograph: Duncan Grant 2018

Sources:

The Colonist, Saturday 20 April 1889, page 24
Daily Telegraph, Wednesday 27 January 1915, page 6
The Examiner, Thursday 6 June 1940, page 3
The Mercury, Monday 22 September 1947, page 7
Examiner, Monday 22 September 1947, page 2

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