Independent Chapel Collins Street 1860

Column---historyBy Kate

Prinsley

This chapel stood on the corner of Collins and Russell streets. Following the arrival of Reverend William Waterfield, planning started to construct an Independent chapel in what was then known as the Port Phillip District.  

The chapel was designed by architect Alexander Sims and built by John Morrison. The style is Georgian, featuring simple unadorned walls and windows. The new chapel could seat about 300 people.

Construction was completed in 1840 and the opening ceremony took place on January 1, 1841. The first service of the day was held by Reverend Waterfield in the morning, followed by James Forbes, who was Presbyterian, in the afternoon and the final service was held in the evening by Joseph Orton, who was Wesleyan.

In 1843 repairs were needed, especially on the roof. In 1847 it was decided by the committee that it needed to increase its seating capacity and, with the addition of a front porch, gallery and cedar pews this was able to be accomplished without having to expand the walls of the chapel.

The chapel was demolished in 1866 to make way for the new and larger Independent Church that stands today on the corner of Collins and Russell streets.

The RHSV is the historical Society for the City of Melbourne.

It is open Monday – Friday 10am – 4pm.

The RHSV welcomes visitors to its exhibitions, library and programmes.

For further information visit: www.historyvictoria.org.au 

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