st. james the great, east st.kilda

From its origins in 1915, as a red brick and teracotta worship space, StJames the Great has evolved, first in the sixties with the applique of a split faced concrete block narthex and now with an adjunct graphite coloured metal parish centre signifying a unified place of worship and fellowship.  The message of welcome is clear with steps and a ramp leading to a communal terrace opening onto a small café (supported by commercial kitchen), a balcony opening onto the narthex and with a cedar clad entry door centred under the clerestorey lit tower.  Movement straight ahead, past communal facilities, leads to a new hall incorporating nineteenth century tessellated tiling complimented by geometric carpet tiling and fronting onto the stained glass windows of the church and chapel.  The insertion of shrouds and motorised metal sun shading louvres to the narthex’s north facing windows protects occupants from the summer sun and completes the transformation.

photographer: Peter Bennetts