Pinjarra’s much-loved St John’s Church has been reopened to the public following recent conservation works, undertaken to address damage to the church roof and walls that was threatening the building’s structural integrity.
On Thursday 30 May, with a little over a year since the fundraising campaign for the St John’s Church Heritage Appeal commenced, over 100 donors, sponsors and members of the public with strong connections to the community significant building, gathered to celebrate the milestone.
Among attendees was Member for Murray-Wellington Mrs. Robyn Clarke MLA and representatives of Pinjarra’s founding families, many of whom assisted in raising $170,000 as part of the Appeal efforts coordinated by the Shire of Murray from May to June last year, which together with an ultimate $130,000 Shire contribution enabled the conservation works.
Also present was the Bishop of Bunbury, the Right Reverend Dr Ian Coutts who in January this year, formally de-consecrated the Church and handed the keys to Shire of Murray President Cr. David Bolt, following the signing of an agreement that named the local government as the new owners.
According to Cr. Bolt, the event was a toast to the successful outcome of the collaborative efforts of town stakeholders, who sought to ensure an asset of considerable sentimental value continued to contribute to the community’s social fabric and sense of place.
“The St John’s Church Conservation project is an apt example of what can be achieved when the community and Shire work together to deliver community-driven initiatives.
“Residents advocated for the conservation project and together with local businesses, groups and organisations, supported the Appeal.
“The Diocese of Bunbury gifted the Church to the Shire and the desire of the leaders and members of the Local Pinjarra Anglican Church that the building continues to contribute to community life, was instrumental in reaching this milestone,” Cr. Bolt said.
The Shire will now work to activate the building through hire opportunities including weddings, christenings and networking events.
“The Shire is also collaborating with Edenvale Homestead User Groups and founding family representatives, to explore other community beneficial, tourism and educational opportunities.
“As one of the oldest structures in Pinjarra, St John’s Church and its churchyard are integral components of the Edenvale Homestead Heritage Precinct,” Cr. Bolt said.
Members of the public wishing to book the charming, 1860’s-bulit building for their event should contact the Shire of Murray’s Community Development team on (08) 9531 7777.
Murray Districts Historical Society members will open St John’s Church to the public this Saturday and Sunday 1 and 2 June from 10:00am – 4:00pm, over the LiveLighter Pinjarra Festival.
The Society also invites members of the public to view the History of St John’s Church Photographic Display at Murray Districts Historical Society, located in the Old Schoolmaster’s House at Edenvale Homestead, on the Saturday and Sunday of the Festival.
Photo credit: Josh Cowling Photography