17 March 2016

Former Methodist Church, Manakau

Located on State Highway 1, Manakau, Manawatu-Wanganui, this building now houses the Kirk Wood Arts and Craft Cafe.


This church was built in 1918, on the site where the original Methodist Church once stood. The original Church, built of timber, opened on 12 November 1897, and was burned to the ground on 12 March 1918, as a result of  a suspected arson. A series of suspicious fires had occurred around that time, with Methodists being the preferred targets, possibly due to their non-tolerance of alcohol.

The new church (this building) is made from reinforced concrete, mainly because of its fire resistant properties. The builder and designer was Mr. Albert Kofoed (1886-1977). This was some years before earthquake regulations were introduced. Mr Kofoed was later to build the present Manakau Hotel (across the road, in the Manakau Village). The concrete exterior of the rectangular gabled church consists of 2 inch slabs, which have been pressed in a machine to form a rock-faced external surface, and a smooth internal surface. The result is the solid rock-faced appearance that is striking to passers-by.

The windows are stained glass. The bottom half of the windows are the "Queen Victoria" commemorative glass. This special commemorative glass incorporates The Rose of England, Thistle of Scotland and Shamrock of Ireland.

This church opened in January 1919; it had cost £446 to build. The Church served the local congregation until  1970 when it was closed due to falling membership. The remaining 4 members of the congregation combined with the Anglican Church in Otaki.

In 1974 the building was sold into private ownership, as a residence. A report on the building's condition was carried out in 1987, when its then owners wished to expand the back of the building for use as a home. The report showed that the only faults were 2 large cracks in the western wall,  attributed to the weight of the block wall above them, the roof load, poor workmanship, also inadequate reinforcing of that wall.

The present owners, David and Diane Campbell, purchased the building in December 1998.


References: Kete Horowhenua

30 January 2015

Coromandel Churches


Unknown Building
Kapanga Rd
Photo Taken: 25 Jan 2015

This building looked to me like it might have been a church or maybe a school originally, it is closed but not yet derelict. In the front is a small concrete slab like it was a step leading to a door so it may have been altered at some stage. It sits right next door to the lovely old once grand home Firlawn House which was gutted by fire in 1992 and left to rot, at 575 Kapanga Rd, Coromandel.

Coromandel Churches


Elim Church
745 Rings Rd
Photo taken: 25 Jan 2015

Elim NZ History

The Elim Pentecostal Church was founded in 1915 by a Welshman named George Jeffreys, he was strongly influenced by the Welsh Revival of 1904. A well known Evangelist, Smith Wigglesworth - the great man of faith, came to New Zealand for crusades in 1922.  This was the beginning of what was to be known as the Pentecostal Church of New Zealand. In August 1949 negotiations were set in motion by the Conference of the Pentecostal Church of New Zealand to link up with the Elim Church of Great Britain. The Elim Church of New Zealand has over 40 churches throughout the nation with significant churches in the main centres.

So far I’ve found nothing on the history of the building and which church it was originally.

28 April 2014

Another Auckland Church


Anglican Church of St Peter
Onehunga Mall & Church Sts
Onehunga, Auckland
Photo taken: 16 Apr 2014

The Selwyn church built in 1848 has been relocated, the existing building dates from the 1980s and incorporates a gothic revival tower from the 1930s. The churchyard contains the graves of many of Onehunga's early settlers.

08 October 2012

East Cape Churches


Christ Church
Maori Anglican
East Cape, NZ
Photo taken: March 1986

The church has obviously undergone a spruce up since this photo was taken, you can see a lovely (& much better) photo of it here.

These days you might find this sign on the door.


25 September 2012

Bay of Islands Churches

christchurchrussell-2 christchurchrussell

Christ Anglican Church
Bay of Islands
Photos taken 23 Oct 1997

Russell, then known by its original Maori name of ‘Kororareka’ was a rough seaport, popular with Pacific whalers, with the nickname ‘The Hellhole of the Pacific’.

The missionaries purchased land in 1834 from Kororareka chiefs Rewa, Wharerahi and Moka and agreed that Maori and Pakeha (Europeans) should have equal rights of burial.

The fundraising subscription list for the church survives with names of missionaries, settlers, traders and ships’ captains including ‘Captain Fitzroy, Mr. Charles Darwin and officers of HMS Beagle’. The building began in 1835 and a simple rectangular chapel with hipped roof was constructed.

According to official records, the first service was on 3 January 1836 when William Williams from Paihia mentions taking one in the ‘new chapel’. Services were conducted in both English and Maori languages.

Dr Broughton consecrated the burial ground around the church in 1839.

Quoted from this website here where more about the history of this lovely old church can be found.

11 April 2012

Auckland Churches


St Jude's Anglican Church
25 St Jude St
Avondale, Auckland
Photo taken 11 Apr 2012

Including the George Maxwell Memorial Cemetery, more information available here:- http://tinyurl.com/6u4nqj8, where can be found the history of the cemetery, full transcriptions of headstones, burial books & other interesting stuff.

mtalbertmethodistMt Albert Methodist Church
831 New North Rd
Mt Albert, Auckland
Photo taken 11 Apr 2012



Blockhouse Bay Baptist Church
504 Blockhouse Bay Rd
Blockhouse Bay, Auckland
Photo taken 11 Apr 2012


This stone is inlaid into the foundations of the church along with five others.


St Dominic's Catholic Church
32 Bolton St
Blockhouse Bay
Photo taken 11 Apr 2012


Seventh Day Adventist
Reform Movement
64 Portage Rd
New Lynn, Waitakere
Photo taken 11 Apr 2012

Waikato Churches


St James Church
Pahau St
Photo taken 7 Apr 2012


St John the Evangelist
Tararu Rd
Tararu, Thames
Photo taken 7 Apr 2012

St John's Church was built for Henry Lawlor, so that he could continue to take divine service in Tararu. Prior to this, for ten years he had conducted services in settlers' homes or even on the beach. The site was selected by Lawlor and Rev. Vicesimus Lush, vicar of Thames, in 1872 on land given by J.S. Graham.  It was not, however, until 1880 when Lawlor was 68 years old, that Lush finally opened the church. In 1952 Henry's grandson speculated that this was one of the first churches in New Zealand and was fascinated by the oil lamps from shipwrecks used to light the church. While monthly services continued for many years on the first Sunday of every month, this finished on 10th December 2006. http://tinyurl.com/79mxyvk
The church lay empty until recently when it was purchased by a family who intend to restore it. An excellent article on it’s history can be found here:- http://tinyurl.com/6v6toh9




St George's Anglican Church
600 Mackay St
Photo taken 7 Apr 2012

An article on the history of this church may be found on this website:- http://tinyurl.com/7nulypf

08 April 2012

More Waikato Churches


St Mary on the Hill Anglican Church
Avon Rd
Pokeno, Bombay
Photo taken 7 Apr 2012












Given by Mrs Harriet Johnston to the people of Pokeno, when she arrived from England in 1892 Pokeno was the gateway to Auckland from the Waikato. The church was erected on 4th Nov 1899, cost including the land £1000, & is built of wood & shingle. There are bells within the spire & it has lovely stained glass windows. Consecrated by Archbishop Cowie on 25 Mar 1900.


Te Tokotoru Tapu
Holy Trinity Anglican Church
Parawai Rd
Photo taken 7 Apr 2012

Designed & built entirely by Maori, opened 1886. This church replaces the old Hauraki Mission Station Church first built in 1837. You will find excellent information and old photographs on this website - http://tinyurl.com/6oey3ll


More information on the Rev Wiremu Turipona can be found here:- http://tinyurl.com/89oemuf

17 March 2012

Waikato Churches


St Andrews Anglican Church
113 Victoria St
Cambridge, Waikato
Photo taken 7 Jun 2009


St John's Anglican Church
Cnr Gilmour and Seddon Sts
Waihi, Waikato


Showing exterior view of St Johns Church, Waihi from the 'Sir George Grey Special Collections, Auckland Libraries, 4-6435', no longer has it's bell tower.


The War Memorial Lych Gate at St John’s Church in Waihi.
Photos taken 15 Jun 2008

Coromandel Peninsula Churches


All Saints Anglican Church
State Highway 25
Manaia, Coromandel
Photo taken 4 Jun 2007


Christ Church
180 Tiki Rd
Photo taken 4 Jun 2007


Showing crowd outside Christ Church
Thames Coromandel Region
From the 'Sir George Grey Special Collections, Auckland Libraries, 4-6351'. It looks quite different to the photo above so it must have been remodelled at some stage.

Auckland Churches


St Stephen's Anglican Chapel
Judges Bay
Auckland City

St Stephen’s Chapel was one of the first Gothic Revival churches commissioned by Bishop Selwyn. The chapel was built in 1857 & has a Greek Cross plan. It was originally built for the signing of the Constitution of the United Church of England & Ireland in NZ. 
Photo taken 6 Nov 2009


Chapel of Faith in the Oaks
Waikumete Cemetery
Glen Eden, Waitakere

This Chapel was built in 1886 as a mortuary Chapel. It was used to conduct burial services until the present Chapel complex was built in 1952. It is now the scene of weddings, blessings and funeral services, it is also used for numerous film location shoots. With the dissolution of the Chapel of Faith in the Oaks Trust, management reverted back to Council during 2008.
Category I heritage building, finely detailed, small masonry Chapel building with plaster walls & pitched slate roof, built 1880s.
Photo taken 6 Jan 2007


Samoan Seventh-Day Adventist Church
29 Margan Ave
New Lynn, Auckland
Photo taken 15 Mar 2012


St Austell's Methodist-Presbyterian Church
35 Margan Ave
New Lynn, Auckland
Photo taken 15 Mar 2012



St Andrews Church Hall (Presbyterian)
22 Margan Ave (cnr Rankin Ave)
New Lynn, Auckland

Stone was laid on 19 Jan 1929, built by the Rev W P Rankin, Minister of St Andrews Church. Architect Clinton H Savage. Bricks donated by Gardner Bros & Parker. The Land donated by the NZ Brick & Tile Co. Joinery donated by Fletcher Construction Co. Voluntary Carpentry by George E McWhirter & Albert Overington, New Lynn.
Unfortunately lying derelict for many years & is now for sale, potential buyers are being put off by it's heritage category 2 status & possibly the two Pohutukawa trees that are also protected.
Photo taken 15 Mar 2012


Tongan Methodist Church
39-43 Margan Ave
New Lynn, Waitakere


This part of the church looks like the original church with the larger more modern one added later. Neo-Gothic tracery cement render building, built turn of the century, category III heritage building. This is the plaque on the wall:-


It may have originally been a Presbyterian Church as I found this brief biography on Rev F R Jeffreys in the Presbyterian archives:-
JEFFREYS, Rev Frank Rupert
b 5.7.1877
w (1) Sr. Evelyn McAdam  b 21.12.1869  m 28.3.1911 d 2.3.1926
w (2) Janet Brash b 1886 m 22.11.1927  d (?)
Theological Hall 1908-10
Licensed by Presbytery of Dunedin Dec 1910
Ordained St Andrews SCP  4.4.1911 - resigned 31.3.1914
Superintendent Presbyterian Support Services Association Auckland  23.5.1914  - resigned 31.3.1928
Resigned from ministry 8.10.1929
He had a bookshop in Queen Street Auckland.
Died Jan 1939
Photo taken 15 Mar 2012


Samoan Congregational Church
22 Hutchinson Ave (cnr Islington Ave)
New Lynn, Waitakere
Category II Heritage building, built 1910

Recently renovated & with no plaque yet, I was able to find out about it from the Waitakere Council website. First photo is courtesy of Google & taken a few years ago in the middle of renovations. You can see the reflection of the windows in the church next door, St Thomas.
Photo taken 15 Mar 2012


St Thomas’ Anglican Church
2 Islington Ave
New Lynn, Waitakere
Category II heritage building, built 1927
Photo taken 15 Mar 2012


Church of the Nazarene
126 Seabrook Ave
New Lynn, Waitakere
Photo taken 15 Mar 2012


Evangelical Formosan Church
28 Rimu St
New Lynn, Waitakere
Photo taken 16 Mar 2012


Christadelphian Hall
3159 Great North Rd
New Lynn, Waitakere
Photo taken 16 Mar 2012


Vavega Ole Ola
Miracle of Life Church
3165 Great North Rd
New Lynn, Waitakere
Photo taken 16 Mar 2012