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The Establishment of the First Church of England Church

1852 saw the appointment and arrival of the Reverend E.B. Proctor to Tambaroura. It was at this visit that a meeting was held to instigate the means for the construction of a Church which could have dual use as a school during the week.

To continue the undertaking of the previous meeting held in October 1852 a further meeting was held to discuss the delays in the tender process for the construction of the Church buildings and to ensure that the funds needed were filled.

The Church was officially opened in July 1854.

First Bark Church of England Church with graves within the fence line
The bottom image shows the surveyed Steele Street in the bottom right of the image.
Images courtesy of the Holtermann Collection, Mitchell Library, State Library of NSW

The cropped portion of the 1860 survey map below shows the position of the original Church and School in relation to the surveyed Lots which were drawn in 1859 in preparation for the official naming of the town to be called Tambaroora in Dec 1859.

Map courtesy of the State Library of NSW

In the image below the position of the original Church of England Church and Cemetery are shown overlaid on the existing cemetery. The change of direction of the graves on the outside of the original fence line to those on the inside is evident. This would have been the size and position of the Graveyard/Cemetery up until 1871 when the church was re-located closer to Town.

Reproduced from Maps and Images overlaid on Google Earth Pro

Church Wardens were appointed in 1855.

The Church, School and Parsonage were gazetted in 1863 to occupy the existing site of the Church, the only changes made were the addition of the School and Parsonage. The School was to occupy Lot 1, the Church Lot 2 and the Parsonage Lot 3, all located within Section 16.

No mention was made of a cemetery within the Church of England gazetted area.

It would appear that the school was also already established as it is shown on the 1860 Town map and occupying Lot 1.

It is interesting to note that a General Cemetery was gazetted but would have been located in a different location approximately 700 metres to the east of the existing cemetery, its size also exceeds the total area allocated to the Church of England.

Although the Cemetery located within the fence line was an integral part of the Church it was NOT an authorised cemetery, the community were not made aware of this until 1929/30. It was not until 1951 that the dedications of 1863 for Lots 1, 2, and 3 of Section 16 were revoked and the Cemetery which now occupied Lots 1, 2 and 3 were re-dedicated as the Tambaroora General Cemetery. This is noted in more detail further in this paper.


Saint Saviours Church Relocation to Lots 4 and 5 Section 2

In 1870 tenders were called for the construction of a new Church of England Church to be located at Lot 4 and 5 of Section 2.

The new Church occupied Lot 4 and 5 of Section 2, the two Lots were purchased by Indenture by Joseph STEPHENS and Harriet BEARD in 1865 for £5/0/0 this also included Lot 3.
These Lot purchases came about after "the Estate of Edward LONG was placed in sequestration for the benefit of his creditors". The official assignee was Robert Hamilton SEMPILL Esquire, of Sydney. Mr.James Rutheren KEMP Esquire, of Sydney, acted on behalf of STEPHENS and BEARD in purchasing these Lots as Tenants in Common.
br> Harriet became the sole owner after the death of Joseph STEPHENS in 1869. There is no record of Land Title transfers to the Church of England for the two Lots. The Lots may have been passed to the Church without any official documentation being recorded, nor do the Title Documents mention any transfer to Harriet Beards Estate on her death in 1906 if in fact she was still the owner. Both Lots were resumed for Public Recreation (Public Works Act) on the 29th May 1981.

April 1871 saw the opening of the Church.

After the Church re-located the cemetery remained at its present location and appears to have unofficially taken on the roll as the General Cemetery and remains the communities functioning cemetery.

Confusion as to the denomination of the Cemetery appears in 1874 when Trustees were appointed for the Church of England portion of the Cemetery.

Even thou the Church had been established for nearly thirty years, Grants for Lot 1, 2 and 3 Section 16 were not issued to the Church of England and Ireland until January 1884, the Trustee's listed on the documents were;
Why there was such a long delay in the issuing of the Grant's for these Lots is unknown, but the Church had already been re-located closer to Town in 1873.

The new Saint Saviours Church was situated on Lots 4 and 5 of Section 2 on Sofala Street. Theses two Lots were owned by Mrs. Harriet Beard at the time. The Certificate of Title shows no record of the land being transferred to the Church of England.

Only rubble now remains of the walls of Saint Saviours Church. Hidden in the scrub for years its location remained hidden until recent research.

(To be Continued)