Meander Valley Gazette

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Community rallies for churches

Community, EventsJoanne Eisemann

QUAMBY ANGLICAN Parish are anxiously waiting to see whether their three iconic, heritage-listed, stone churches have been saved.

St Andrew’s Carrick was built by Sir Thomas Reibey and consecrated by Bishop Nixon in 1845. With a graveyard and columbarium, the church is the only tangible sign of worship in the town.

St Andrew’s Westbury is convict-built and the foundation stone laid in 1836. The oldest church in Westbury and one of the earliest planned churches in Tasmania. Hosting Nellie Payne’s wonderful woodcarvings, it has a columbarium but the cemetery is some distance away.

St Mary’s Hagley dates to 1861, built and paid for by Sir Richard Dry. The first Tasmanian-born Premier, he is buried under the altar. The newest church, but possibly the most recognisable, it stands outside Hagley, ‘a light on the hill’. It has a graveyard, columbarium and (former) rectory.

The Diocesan Council of the Anglican Church of Tasmania meets in December to advise all state parishes as to whether their submissions are successful.

The Parish are determined to do everything they can to keep their churches open for the communities. While not against paying redress to the survivors of sexual abuse by Anglican clergy, the Parish believes that the Anglican Church of Tasmania can raise the money by other means.

The Parish have asked people to pray for the Parish’s survival and the community has already rallied around them tremendously. The Parish hopes that this continues, especially leading up to the Diocesan decisions.

The Parish have started raising funds, as they must prove the Parish is sustainable in the future.

Donations have already been made and the local community is assisting with fund-raising. St Andrew’s Westbury was packed recently, for a concert with local musicians Joanne Mitchelson (pan flute and harp), Hamish Pike (violin) and Peter Schultz (pipe organ).

Busy planning Christmas services, the Parish is asking the community to embrace these events and consider the future of the Quamby Parish.

Flying on a wing and a prayer at this uncertain time the hope is that the parish will be like a phoenix and rise from the ashes bigger and stronger than ever before.

How you can help: Donations towards saving the churches and proving Parish sustainability can be made to the following account.

Account name: Parish of Quamby BSB 067 014Account number 10064930.

Follow on Facebook AnglicanParishOfQuamby

Contact: Rev Josephine Pyecroft, mobile: 0412 202 563

Quamby Parishioners protest the sale of their churches. Photo by Mike Moores

Quamby Parishioners protest the sale of their churches. Photo by Mike Moores