This section is from the book "Modern Buildings, Their Planning, Construction And Equipment Vol5", by G. A. T. Middleton. Also available from Amazon: Modern Buildings.
(Contributed by R.J. Haddon, F.R.V.I.A., F.S.A.I.A.)
St. Mary's Roman Catholic Cathedral, Sydney (Fig. 214), is perhaps the finest specimen of Decorated Gothic architecture in Australia, and has cost up to date some £230,000. It occupies a picturesque and commanding site, and is built of warm yellow brown sandstone, from designs by the late Mr. W. W. Wardell, F.R.I.B.A.
This church has the great internal height of 100 feet, with open timber roofing to nave and transepts, the aisles groined in stone, and the building when completed will be 350 feet in length. There is some very fine stained glass within, and the high altar, of New Zealand Omaru stone richly carved, is an imposing part of the interior treatment.
In the planning provision is made for the numerous chapels and altars necessary for the full Roman Catholic ritual, while a separate but adjoining building is provided for the various sacristies.
The Cathedral Church at Bendigo, Victoria (Fig. 215), designed by Messrs. Reid, Smart, & Tappin, architects, is upon a cruciform plan, with four transept chapels, besides one on either side of the chancel formed by the eastward extension of the side aisles. The nave is divided into bays, having a centre to centre measurement of 17 feet 6 inches, the over-all measurement of the structure being nearly 300 feet. The width of the nave is 35 feet, with 17 feet 6 inches side aisles; the transepts are 35 feet wide, the octagonal chapels being 26 feet across. The height of the main walls is 60 feet, the nave arcade being 30 feet high. The roof is constructed of open timbering throughout on the hammer-beam principle with angel carvings.
Church Hall Surrey Hills Victoria.
A.A.Fritsch Architect. Plan.
There are dual organ chambers in the western gallery, where accommodation is also planned for the choir.
The building is of Barabool Hill freestone, which is of greenish-brown colour, with dressings of Wawin Ponds stone, buff in colour, these stones being quarried in the State of Victoria.
The style is Early Decorated, and makes an effective architectural composition in the city. The two western towers, with plain stems working up into Decorated belfries and spirettes, give dignity and cathedral character to the front, an effect greatly heightened by the large flight of steps leading to the western doors, supplemented by arcaded band work which flanks the doors and extends right up to towers on either side.
The height of the western window is 38 feet. It is filled in with a handsome stained-glass window executed by Hardmann at a cost of £1000. The high base of the building and the steps have been carried out in Victorian granite.
The cost to date has been about ,£40,000, and it is estimated that when completed the total cost will be about £70,000.
Fig. 216 shows a Roman Catholic church of ease erected upon a commanding site at Surrey Hills, a few miles from Melbourne.
The church proper is rectangular in shape, with a half-open timber roof having trusses resting upon the buttresses shown. The main entry is through a bold semicircular arched doorway, which gives pleasing dark shadows in the sunny days, the effect being heightened by a well-designed wrought-iron scroll work grille with a gilded cross in the centre, which, having the back shadow setting, can be seen from a great distance. The walls are of red bricks, the roof covering being of American slates. The vestry and sanctuary are treated in a semi-domestic style with half timbering. The architect is Mr. A. A. Fritsch, F.R.V.I.A., of Melbourne.
The design of the main portion of the Sydney University buildings, which are perhaps more rightly included in this chapter than under the heading of schools, is shown in Fig. 217, the work having been carried out by the late Edmund Blacket, architect. They occupy a magnificent site, and in general treatment are very satisfying to the critical sense. The interior of the great hall is perhaps the most interesting part of the building, with its fine cedar hammer beam roof, mellow stonework, and well-designed stained glass. Other buildings have been added within the university reserve that are too heterogeneous to be altogether satisfactory as architectural compositions.
The plan is arranged on the quadrangle system adopted at the old colleges of Oxford and Cambridge, but with cloisters round the garth, from which the various lecture-rooms and apartments are reached.
St. Raphael's (Church of England) at Fern Tree (Fig. 218), under the shadow of Mount Wellington, is a picturesque design by Mr. Allan C. Walker, A.R.I.B.A., carried out in locally grown timber. There is a stone foundation; the walls are of hard - wood studding covered with hard-wood weather-boards. The roof and upper portion of tower and gable are covered with split gum shingles. The inside is lined throughout with 3-inch V-jointed hard-wood boarding. The weatherboards are painted a brick red, and the shingles have assumed a silvery grey colour, the whole harmonising with the surrounding evergreen foliage.
The drawing given in Fig. 219 may be taken as a type of the small Nonconformist church required in Australian country towns. This Methodist church has recently been erected at Camperdown, the architect being Mr. G. B. Leith. It shows a compact brick building following the rectangular plan, with an angular flight of steps up to a long porch, so arranged as to keep out wind and dust. The walls are of red bricks with top finishings of buff coloured rough-cast. There is an open timber roof with Kauri lining. The work as a whole makes a pleasing and original composition.