Bunyip, VIC - St Thomas' Anglican

Year Built: 1902

Denomination: Anglican

Saint: Thomas

Address: 26 A'Beckett Street, Bunyip, Victoria, 3815

Architect: Frederick Klingender

Traditional Owners: Bunurong people

Last Updated: 15/07/2022

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History and Architecture:

The Bunyip Parish of St. Thomas' was originally part of the Gippsland Fort mission in 1879 and early church services were held In Kraft's Hall. By the early 1890': a-proper church was being planned, and fund raising began In December 1891.

On 15 October 1902, Mrs W. A. A'Beckett Snr of Brighton laid the foundation block for the new church, which was designed by the architect Frederick Klingender, and bulk on land donated by the A'Beckett family. The font in memory of Mrs A'Beckett is to be found in the church.

St. Thomas' was opened by the Right Rev. Bishop Pain, the first Bishop of the Diocese on 28 December 1902. About 406 people attended the first morning and evening services and the Bishop had a busy day as there were also 14 baptisms registered.

The total cost of the building was over 377. The weatherboard church has been described as a gabled arts and crafts style church, with a corrugated iron clad roof and shingle pattern boards to a square tower set towards one end. The porch is gabled with an open picturesque gabled outer porch attached. It was reported to be one of the prettiest and most attractive buildings in the state.

On 11 December 1907 the Right Rev. the Lord Bishop of Gippsland conducted -a confirmation service for six candidates and, In September 1908 a new organ was installed.

Extensive alterations were made to the church in 1919 because of damage caused by white ants. In 1943 an entrance gate to the church grounds was erected by-the congregation as a tribute to Major Arthur and Beatrice A'Beckett who had given generously to the church over many years. , With the erection of a lychgate, the original gateway was relocated to the eastern boundary of the church grounds.

In 1945 the Bunyip Parish became reconstituted with the Rev. N. A. McLean as vicar.

A restoration appeal was launched on 21't December 100, to try to rectify structural problems relating to the roof, the need for re blocking the floor and for repainting.

Extensive renovations and extensions were carried out on the vicarage In 1995. In 1997 a new organ was purchased following a generous donation by a member of the congregation.

In 1996 a Lady Chapel, was established, dedicated to Our Lady of Walaingham. The most recent development is the erection of a lychgate, modelled on the original church porch.


This list may not contain every serving cleric, past or present, for this church.
Further submissions welcomed.

Years Name Annotation D.o.B D.o.D
1894 - 1895 Rev John Routledge Majendie Reader 1871 1902
1895 - 1896 Rev W. F. Walker
1897 - 1898 Rev A. N. Westley
1898 - 1899 Rev Alfred Brain 1862 1944
1899 - 1900 Rev Harry Joseph Harvey 1865 1950
1900 - 1901 Rev Arthur Rae Campbell 1864 1935
1901 - 1902 Rev E. Hankison
1902 - Rev S. O. Lyon
1902 - 1905 Rev B. J. Syer
1906 - 1908 Rev S. H. Breeze
1908 - 1910 Rev Karl Egbert Hamilton 1883 1958
1911 - 1912 Rev A. Booth
1912 - 1915 Rev A. Banks
- Rev P. W. Robinson 1889 1952
1916 - 1918 Mr Basil C. Gadsen (Reader)
1916 - 1918 Rev Walter Backholer 1889 1974
1918 - 1922 Rev W. Evans
1922 - 1925 Rev Melchior George Opper 1884 1959
1925 - 1926 Rev Harry Carlton Busby 1888 1969
1926 - 1938 Rev Edward John Dodd 1868 1945
1938 - 1942 Rev Claude Woodhouse 1900 1984
1942 - 1945 Rev William Leon McSpedden 1907 1968
1946 - 1949 Rev Norman Alexander McLean 1879 1961
1949 - 1951 Rev G. A.E. Turner 1920
1951 - 1953 Rev Thomas William Hewlett 1900 1979
1953 - 1958 Rev K L. McConchie
1958 - 1961 Rev P. Dunn
1962 - 1964 Rev Donald William Gibson 1930
1965 - 1975 Rev E T.S. Reynolds
1975 - Rev T. Pinniger
1985 - 1989 Rev Frederick Albert Morrey 1934
2010 - Rev Jeff Richardson


No information currently available. Submissions welcomed.


Kim Backholer LS M.I.S for information on clergy details


Light and Life A History of the Anglican Church in Gippsland