PARISH HISTORY

A Brief History

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Anglicans in the Wembley area first worshipped in a small wood and iron hall that was built using volunteer labour on land overlooking Herdsman lake, between Simper and Marlow streets. It was consecrated by Archbishop Riley on the 18th November 1917 and was dedicated to St Edmund, king and martyr.

To meet the needs of a growing population, a timber hall was erected in Pangbourne Street (where the Koh-I-Nor nursing home now stands) in 1931. The original church building from Herdsman was added to the new hall, thus establishing the Parish of Wembley/Jolimont.

As the area continued to grow with the development of post war housing, there was an increasing need for a more permanent church. It was not until 1952, when the Revd Jack Watts accepted leadership of the parish, that the project became a reality.

The new church was designed by Victorian Architect Louis R. Williams FRAIA in association with Mr R. Blanchard FRAIA of Perth. Construction was carried out by Harnett and Horner at the cost, including furniture, of 40,000 pounds.

The consecration by Archbishop Moline on the 4th of August 1956 was attended by over one thousand people.

 

The Pipe Organ

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Our over a century old organ was purchased in Great Yarmouth, UK and is located in the loft at the rear of the church. It was originally built by William Christmas Mack, a successful organ builder for over 40 years.

The organ was shipped to Australia and rebuilt at St Edmund’s by a group of parishioners during 1993/94. One of the interesting aspects of this organ is that it is all mechanical, the only electrical operation being the bellows.

 

The Rose Window

The rose window is the work of Mr D. Taylor Kelloch FRSA. His design symbolizes the centrality of God the Holy Spirit in our lives. The flames may be read as symbols of fervour, purification, retribution and sacrifice.

 

The Font Bowl

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The font bowl was created by local artist Matthew Goodlet in 2011. It echoes the symbolism of the Rose Window, while reminding us of Christ’s gift of Living Water in our baptism.

 

The Chapel

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The small chapel to the left of the pulpit is used for weekday services and as a place for prayer and reflection.

 

The Parish Hall

Church Hall

The parish hall was designed by parishioner Mr Len Lilley and was consecrated on 14th March 1972. It is used for a range of parish activities and is available to community groups for hire.

 

The Memorial Gardens

Thanks to the work of a group of parish enthusiasts the gardens around the church provide pleasure for all. A walk around the gardens will reveal memorials to many former members of the parish.