Sydney Architecture Images- Eastern Suburbs

St. Mark’s Church

architect

Edmund Blacket

location

Darling Point Rd.

date

1848-75

style

Victorian Romanesque Based on the 13th century English Gothic style.

construction

Sandstone

type

Church
 

 

  A winged lion has been regarded as the symbol of St Mark since at least the second centrury A.D.
   
Designed by Edmund Blacket in 1852 St Marks Church has become a popular wedding venue hosting such famous weddings as Elton John's first marriage and the fictional wedding in the film Muriel's Wedding.

St. Mark’s Rectory, Darling Point Rd., 1848-75 Edmund Blacket. Based on the thirteenth century English Gothic style.
Victorian Rustic Gothic
Divine Service has been celebrated in St Mark's on its present site since Sunday November 7, 1852. The church celebrated 150 years of service to the community over the weekend of 9 & 10 November 2002.

Services at Darling Point were first held in a coach house in Mona Road, styled the "Chapel of St Mark's" made available by Thomas Ware Smart, of Mona, Darling Point. The land on which the present church was built was given by wool merchant, gold mining and cold storage entrepreneur Thomas Sutcliffe Mort, whose home Greenoaks, now Bishopscourt, lends it name to the Greenoaks Avenue adjacent to the church. One of the early rectors of the church was the Reverend Geroge Fairfowl McArthur, son of Hannibal Macarthur of the Parramatta wool growing Macarthurs (though with changed spelling).

The church was modeled on Holy Trinity, Horncastle in Lincolnshire, England. Edmund Blacket recommended the design and oversaw construction. The foundation stone was laid in 1848 by Bishop of Australia, the Right Reverend William Broughton. Memorials inside the church commemorate local citizenry who worshipped there and contributed to Church and State: such names as Mort, Smart, Street, Fairfax and Cutler are represented.

In recent times Woollahra Municipal Council has, by popular demand, imposed height restrictions on the development near the church, to maintain its position as a focal point of the area.

St Mark's Church

Church services at Darling Point were first held in a coach house in Mona Road known as the "Chapel of St Marks" within the grounds of Thomas Ware Smart's Mona property. The present St. Mark's church was built on land given by Thomas Sutcliffe Mort. The foundation stone was laid on 4 September 1848 by Bishop Broughton at a grand ceremony in Mort's garden, to which all parties were invited including workmen and families. "The design which has been planned by Mr [Edmund] Blacket is very neat and will have a pleasing effect from the surrounding country and harbour" reported the Sydney Morning Herald, 5 September 1848.

St. Mark's [Darling Point] Sydney

St. Mark's [Darling Point] Sydney, by unknown artist
pencil drawing. PXA 550/26

St Mark's Church, Darling Point

St Mark's Church, Darling Point, ca. 1900-1910, by Star Photo Co.
albumen photograph. PXE 711/249

After work was completed, St Mark's opened for divine service on 7 November 1852. It was a proud day for Mort and all those Darling Point families who had contributed to its completion. Thomas Mort, Thomas Ware Smart and Thomas Whistler Smith were the first church wardens (known as the "Three Toms"). St. Mark's became a focal point and meeting place for the whole community.

The Darling Point parishioners continued to tirelessly support the church. The bells, donated by Thomas Ware Smart in 1862, were first heard at the grand wedding of his step-daughter Mary Anne Lydia Oliver who, it was said, was attended by twenty bridesmaids. The tower and the steeple, completed in 1875, were a gift of William Bradley, whose Lindesay property was one of the earliest in Darling Point.

St. Mark's has always been a popular and fashionable church for society weddings, for both Darling Point residents and Sydney's aspiring social set. Social photographer Sam Hood captured many socialite weddings during the 1930s. In more recent times, St Mark's has hosted such famous weddings as Elton John's first marriage and the fictional wedding in the film Muriel's Wedding.

 

www.sydneyarchitecture.com 

links

http://www.stmarks-darlingpoint.com.au/index.html
http://www.atmitchell.com/journeys/history/people/east/community/stmarks.cfm