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Frederick de Jersey Clere, c.1936

Frederick de Jersey Clere (7 January 1856 – 13 August 1952) was an architect in Wellington, New Zealand.


He was born in Walsden, near Todmorden, Lancashire and trained as an architect before emigrating to New Zealand with his family in 1877.[1]

He was an architect for 58 years, in Feilding, Wanganui, and Wellington. In 1883 he was made the Diocesan Architect for the Anglican Church in Wellington, designing over 100 churches not only in Wellington but across the lower North Island.[2] He built a variety of buildings, including the Wellington Harbour Board Head Office and Bond Store and the Wellington Harbour Board Wharf Office Building for the Wellington Harbour Board (WHB) and also designed schools, houses and churches. In 1891 he designed the extension to the baptistry of Old St Paul's in Wellington.[3]

An advocate of concrete construction (though he wrote a pamphlet on building wooden churches), his best known design is St Mary of the Angels (Catholic, 1922) of reinforced concrete, in Wellington.[4] Many of his churches are in the Gothic Revival style, for example St Alban's Church in Pauatahanui[5] and the Catholic, St Patrick's Church, Palmerston North which was built in 1925 and renovated and rededicated in 1980 as the Cathedral of the Holy Spirit. He was involved with his architectural partner, John Swan, in designing St Gerard's, Wellington.

In 1935, he was awarded the King George V Silver Jubilee Medal.[6]

He practised on his own and in association with many other architects, including his son. Clere continued working until the age of 92, and died on 13 August 1952 at the age of 96.[4]

See alsoEdit


  • Architect of the angels: the churches of Frederick de Jersey Clere by Susan Maclean (2002, Steele Roberts, Wellington) ISBN 1-877228-68-0
  • Hints on building wooden churches by Frederick de J. Clere (1886, Ffrost & Manley, Wellington), a 16-page pamphlet
  1. ^ Maclean, Susan. "Clere, Frederick de Jersey 1856–1952". Dictionary of New Zealand Biography. Ministry for Culture and Heritage. Retrieved 7 April 2011.
  2. ^ "CLERE, Frederick de Jersey 1856–1952". Victoria University of Wellington. Retrieved 19 June 2012.
  3. ^ Sheppard, Peter. Restoring Old St Paul's. Wellington: Ministry of Works, 1970, p. 4.
  4. ^ a b "Enduring Concrete Award 2010: St Mary of the Angels Church, Boulcott Street in Wellington". St Mary of the Angels. Archived from the original on 8 February 2013. Retrieved 19 June 2012.
  5. ^ "St Alban's Church (Anglican)". Register of Historic Places. Heritage New Zealand. Retrieved 10 July 2012.
  6. ^ "Official jubilee medals". Evening Post. 6 May 1935. p. 4. Retrieved 2 July 2013.

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