What is significant?
St. Peter's Anglican Church is a gothic brick church on the eastern hill of the township of Merino, on the north east corner of Maud and Henty Streets. The Church has timber framed windows and doors, in linear gothic arches. The interiors have not yet been inspected. The church began to be built in 1865, and is strongly associated with influencial clergyman Francis Cusack Russell. The church remains in very good condition with a very high degree of integrity. The building and land was recently sold into private ownership.
How is it significant?
St. Peter's Anglican Church is of historical and social significance to the Glenelg Shire.
Why is it significant?
The church and its setting are of historical significance as they represent the beginnings of the Anglican Church in Merino, and the dedication of the local congregation and their leader, Dr. Russell, who established first a chapel in 1861 and then a church by 1866. It is of further historical significance as the expression of the role and position of the Anglican Church and its congregation in the community for over one hundred and forty years.
ST PETER'S ANGLICAN CHURCH (FORMER) - Physical Description 1
St. Peter's Anglican Church is a brick building in the Early English Gothic Revival style. It stands on an elevated site overlooking the township and is aligned east-west. The overall dimensions are 6.2m by 18.6m. The church now comprises the nave of six bays, a porch reached by steps on the south side, and a chancel and vestry at the rear. The bays are divided by substantial buttresses, with the front corner buttresses set on the diagonal. The light red brick walls are built on a rock-face sandstone plinth. The bricks are laid in alternating stretcher and header bond, with small diaper panels of darker bricks under the side windows. Various details such as sills, capping stones, an intermediate cornice and the architraves of the windows are finished in finely dressed sandstone. The west wall has the remains of an ochre-tinted lime-wash. In the west wall there are three lancet windows and in the gable there is a nimbus-shaped ventilator. (This is a more refined version of the same details at St. John's, Digby which predates St. Peter's by three years.) The side windows are memorials in stained glass. The steps to the porch on the south side are bluestone. The timber, ledge and brace front door is double leafed, with elaborate wrought iron hinges and iron studs. A stone cross surmounts the gable. In the south-east corner of the porch and church there is a free-standing iron bell tower. Unfinished brick work in the north-east corner of the nave, which is not found on the other side, suggests that a transept or tower was proposed, but never built.
A red brick chancel and vestry with slate roofs were added across the back wall in a similar style to the church. The vestry projects beyond the south wall allowing a door for access. The building has been further altered by the introduction of a double door in the fifth bay of the nave on the north side and the introduction of a concrete buttresses at the north-east corner of the nave and of the later vestry. The interior includes various memorials on the walls. The building retains a very high degree of integrity but is in only fair condition, suffering from rising damp and serious cracking.
ST PETER'S ANGLICAN CHURCH (FORMER) - Historical Australian Themes
Theme 8 Developing Australia's cultural life
8.6.1 Worshipping together
8.6.3 Founding Australian religious institutions
8.6.4 Making places for worship
8.8 Remembering the fallen
8.12 Living in and around Australian homes
8.14 Living in the country and rural settlements