St Augustine’s Memorial Church

St Augustine's Memorial Church St Augustine's Memorial Church

The foundation stone of St Augustine’s Anglican Church in Calliope Road, Stanley Bay, was laid on 17 October 1930. It was inscribed as follows: TO THE GLORY OF GOD / AND IN MEMORY OF THE MEN OF / THIS PARISH WHO GAVE THEIR LIVES / IN THE GREAT WAR / 1914 – 1918. /ERECTED 1930. The Arts and Crafts style war memorial church was designed by the architect W.S.R. Bloomfield, who had served as a pilot during the First World War.

The opening service was held on 21 December 1930. The church’s First World War roll of honour, which had been unveiled in the old mission church in 1920, was transferred to the new church. This was a brass tablet which listed the names of seven former members of the congregation who had died during the war: Private W.N. Philson, Second Lieutenant I. O’Neil, Flight Sub-Lieutenant L.H. Brett, Private K.E. Wight, Gunner R.L. Gribbin, Private H. M. Ansenne and Private J.G.W. Parsons. A white ensign and a Union Jack displayed above the plaque honoured respectively Gunner R.L. Gribbin and Flight Sub-Lieutenant Leslie Brett.

St Augustine’s has sometimes described as the first war memorial church built in the Auckland Anglican diocese. In fact this honour belonged to St Martin’s, at Waimauku (1921).

In recent years St Augustine’s became redundant to parish needs. The final service was held there on 28 May 2017. The land and buildings have been sold for conversion into a private residence. The roll of honour has been transferred to the Devonport parish’s mother church, Holy Trinity (the memorial flags had previously been returned to the respective families).

Sources: ‘S. Augustine’s Church, Stanley Bay’, Church Gazette, vol. 55, no. 8, August 1925, p. 142; ‘St Augustine’s Church, Stanley Bay’ [sketch], Auckland Star, 28/6/1930, p. 10; ‘Memorial Church’, NZ Herald, 19/10/1930, p. 8; ‘New Memorial Church: Opening by Archbishop’, NZ Herald, 22/12/1930, p. 17; Our Parish: A History of the Parish of The Holy Trinity, Devonport, 1856-1990, Auckland, 1990, [pp. 26, 31, 52]; Phillip D. Jackson, North Shore War Memorials, the author, 1991, D18/1-4, D18/P1-2; Welcome to the church of Saint Augustine (text of pamphlet formerly available in the church); Martin Jones, St Augustine’s Church (Anglican), Heritage New Zealand, 2012; ‘St Augustine’s Church registered’, Heritage Quarterly, Winter 2014, p. 14; ‘Ministry concludes at St Augustine’s Church’, The Messenger [Holy Trinity Devonport parish magazine], July [August?] 2017, p, 5.

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