Ramblings of a much published New Zealand author

05 August 2009

Country Churches of NZ 80. St. Alban's, Pauatahanui, Wellington

I wrote and illustrated Country Churches of New Zealand. It was published in 2002 by New Holland, Publishers and is still on sale in bookshops. The publishers have kindly agreed to me re-publishing some of the book’s images and descriptions in this blog.

Along the frustrating coastal highway north of Wellington I made all legal haste to get to Pauatahanui before the sun sank too low. Most things militated against me: blocking traffic, a train at a road crossing and road works. But when at last I climbed the path to Frederick de Jersey Clere's St Alban's its west front and that finely poised steeple were flooded with golden light. A prize at the end of a long day's work!

It was built in 1896 near the site of an 1857 chapel, on a hill that had served as a defensive look-out for both Maori and European. Its proportion is superb and original in form, its detail picked out from white boards in yellow and crimson, and the belfry steeple in silver grey.
As old macrocarpas mourned, the stones on the slopes of its surrounding graveyard seemed to urge the church upwards. At my feet I found the grave of a talented colleague of times long gone; a brave woman, she died too young of cancer. There could be nowhere more beautiful for her to rest than in the grounds of St Alban's.

This being the last of my North Island collection, it was time to cross Cook Strait...


No comments:

Post a Comment


Blog Archive

Hits Counter


Loaded Web

Blog Directory for Albany, New Zealand


Blog This Here

Blog Flux

Commentary blogs
Blog Directory


  • <$BlogCommentAuthor$> // <$BlogCommentDateTime$>


By Don Donovan