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Scots Church, Melbourne

#10 of 40 in Historic Sites in Melbourne
Church · Hidden Gem · Tourist Spot
The Scots' Church is a Presbyterian church in Melbourne, Australia. It was the first Presbyterian church to be built in the Port Phillip District (now the state of Victoria) and is located on Collins Street. It is a congregation of the Presbyterian Church of Australia and has been described as "an icon for well over a hundred years".
The Reverend James Forbes was recruited to come to Australia as a Presbyterian minister by the Revd John Dunmore Lang, arriving in Melbourne from Sydney via boat on 20 January 1838. He found that a retired Church of Scotland minister, the Revd James Clow, had arrived on 25 December 1837 and had commenced an afternoon service from 2 pm and 4 pm according to Presbyterian forms in a basic building constructed west of William Street and north of Little Collins Street (now the site of the AMP centre). Clow had been a Church of Scotland chaplain in Bombay, India but had retired and was of independent means. He had intended to settle in South Australia but when he stopped en route in Hobart the positive reports about Port Phillip led him to visit the Port Phillip District in October 1837 and then settle permanently.
Forbes continued the Presbyterian services commenced by Clow on 31 December 1837 in the "Pioneers Church" near the north west corner of William Street and Little Collins Street. The Church of England soon made exclusive claims to this communal building and so Forbes held services in Craig and Broadfoot's store in Collins Street until a temporary timber building called "The Scots' Church" was opened on the adjoining land loaned by David Fisher in July 1838. The site was between where the Olderfleet and Rialto buildings were subsequently erected (Lot 14 Section 2). It was essentially a large room with a fireplace.
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  • The Scots have the reputation for being hard-headed Calvinists, but they have bullt awe-inspiring churches. Scots Church is a congregation of the Presbyterian Church of Australia; the church is...  more »
  • Scots Church is a Presbyerian church in Collins St, just over from St Michael's, whi ch is similar in design but is parish of the Uniting Church of Australia. . Scots Church is a magnificent paens...  more »
  • Beautiful historical church. Lovely stained glass windows
  • Good for tourists and anyone who has never visited this place.

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