Balmain, NSW - St Augustine's Catholic

Year Built: 1906

Denomination: Roman Catholic

Saint: Augustine

Address: 6 Eaton Street, Balmain, New South Wales, 2041

Architect: Augustus Pugin

Last Updated: 21/04/2023

See Street View

Send your photos

Click on the image to view larger

History and Architecture:

The first St Augustine's was built in 1848 and designed by Augustus Pugin England's most influential early Victorian architect.

In 1848 the Archbishop of Sydney put up a bond of 150 which would be voided unless part of a church or materials worth 400 were on site within 18 months. The "magnificent plot of land [was] beautifully situated on the summit of a hill, commanding a prospect of the surrounding country"

On 18 September 1848 the Vicar-General called tenders for the erection of the new church notifying builders that "the plans and specifications can be seen at Mr John Davis's, near St Patrick's church".12 Mention of formal tender documents implies an architect, but his identity is not known. The name of the builder was not mentioned either.

The first service was held on 13 April 1851 the day after the church was opened.

The Architect for the second church was Albert Bates and the foundation stone was laid on 7 October 1906. It was dedicated on 1 December 1907.


These names are now in the Database and can be searched individually.

Years Name Annotation D.o.B D.o.D
1854 - 1856 Father Robert Downing
1856 - 1864 Father John Joseph Therry
1864 - 1869 Father George F Dillon
1860 - 1870 Father John Rigney
1869 - 1871 Father P. Burch
1871 - 1875 Father L. P Pacilio
1875 - 1877 Father Forest
1878 - 1881 Father G Dillon
1881 - 1885 Father J. J. Carroll
1885 - 1887 Father T. Leonard
1894 - 1902 Father P. Healy
1902 - 1929 Father Rohan
1929 - 1931 Mgt T. Hayden
1932 - 1935 Father H Conaghan
1935 - 1945 Father P. J. Morris
1945 - 1972 Father P T Boland
1973 - 1988 Father Noel Joseph Murphy 1988
1988 - 1994 Father B. Titmuss
1994 - Father J Keeble


The Organ was built by Hill & Son in 1886. It had 3m., 21 sp. st., mechanical. Originally for the YMCA Hall in Pitt Street, Sydney, it was moved some 20 years later to St Carthage’s Catholic Cathedral, Lismore, in northern NSW.  It was transferred to St Augustine’s in 1912.
For a full description and photos click here.


1. On Balmain Hill. 150 years of the Catholic Church in Balmain. Peter Reynolds. SLN 282.944127
2. Organ Historical Trust of Australia with permission.