No. 1467 - South Springfield - Union Church (1909)

South Springfield is a farming area approximately 10 kilometres south of Springfield in the Scottsdale district. It lies south of the junction of the South Springfield Road and the Ten Mile Track in the foothills of Mount Maurice. South Springfield once had a State school, a public hall and a Union Church. Nothing of these buildings remain.

The origins of South Springfield’s Union Church can be dated to a public meeting held in April 1909. The Launceston Examiner reported:

“A public meeting was held at South Springfield on Thursday night, to consider ways and means for building a church and Sunday school. There was a fairly representative gathering. Mr. B. F. Reynolds was voted to the chair, and explained the object of the meeting. Mr. R. Lethborg kindly gave the land necessary in a suitable position. A committee of seven was appointed - three ladies and four gentlemen - of which Mr. F. Bowen was appointed secretary, and Mrs. R. Lethborg treasurer. The meeting was enthusiastic throughout, and a subscription list was opened. The sum of £5 9s 6d was promised on the spot, beside timber and help in other ways…It was resolved - That the building to be erected should be called the South Springfield Union Church and Sunday school. The committee is - Mesdames R. Lethborg, R. Ranson, H. Hingston, Messrs. F. Bowen, R. Lethborg, R. Ranson, and H. Hingston”.

The building was erected within a few months and was officially opened on Sunday 5 September 1909. Launceston’s Daily Telegraph reported:

“The new church recently erected at South Springfield was opened on Sunday, when two services were conducted by the Rev. W. J Abbott, Methodist minister, of Scottsdale. Notwithstanding the inclemency of the weather there was a large congregation at the morning service….On the following Wednesday the opening effort was continued, when a picnic was held in the afternoon, and followed by a concert at night. The weather was again showery, but the building was packed for the evening meeting. Rev. W. G. Abbott occupied the chair, when an excellent programme of solos, duets, and recitations was rendered. The chairman gave the financial report, which showed that the building fund was in a splendid condition. The whole of the work to date was paid for and a small balance in hand. A new organ had been purchased, and only a small sum remains unpaid. The building is of weatherboard, iron roof, find is nicely finished inside. The friends at South Springfield deserve great credit for the manner in which, they have worked. They have as a result a pretty little church, and practically out of debt….”.

The Union Church was temporarily used as a State school until a school building was completed in July 1910.

In 1947 the church had a new lease of life after the appointment of new trustees. In February The North East Advertiser reported:

“A public meeting, convened by Mr W. Lethborg, snr., was held in the Union Church at South Springfield on Thursday evening last for the purpose of appointing, trustees of the Union Church. There were present: — Rev. J. E. Atkins, Messrs H. K. Spotswood, W. Lethborg, snr., J. Wilson, C. Jessop, E. C. Smith, L. Hemphill, M. Heazlewood, E. Jensen, Mesdames Jessop. Linton, Smith, Heazlewood and Targett. Mr Spotswood, who was voted to the chair, said the meeting had been convened for the purpose of appointing trustees of the Church property, in lieu of those original trustees who had all died or left the State…..The following trustees were then appointed: — Messrs J. Wilson (chairman), E. Jessop (secretary). L. Hemphill (treasurer), E. Jensen, E. Smith, M. Heazlewood and C. Lethborg. It was decided to insure the building and contents for the sum of £150….”.

At the same meeting a Ladies Committee was established which embarked on organising a fair to raise funds to renovate the church.

In April 1947 the North Eastern Advertiser reported that a sports day, fair and a dance was held at the South Springfield Hall were to to raise funds. Tenders were then advertised for the renovation of the church which was awarded to Mr Carl Jensen.

The subsequent history of the church is not well documented although Methodist and Anglican services were held through the 1950s. The date of the church’s closure is not known. I have yet to establish what became of the building or find a photograph of it.

Examiner, Saturday 3 July 1909

North-Eastern Advertiser, Tuesday 22 April 1947


Examiner, Tuesday 20 April 1909, page 2
Examiner, Saturday 3 July 1909, page 9
Daily Telegraph, Monday 6 September 1909, page 2
Examiner, Monday 6 September 1909, page 7
The Mercury, Wednesday 8 September 1909, page 2
North-Eastern Advertiser, Friday 15 April 1910, page 2
North-Eastern Advertiser, Tuesday 25 February 1947, page 3
North-Eastern Advertiser, Friday 28 February 1947, page 3
North-Eastern Advertiser, Tuesday 22 April 1947, page 2
North-Eastern Advertiser, Friday 6 June 1947, page 3
North-Eastern Advertiser, Friday 12 September 1947, page 3
North-Eastern Advertiser, Friday 10 February 1950, page 5


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