St Brigid's Church, Red Hill
St Brigid's Church is a heritage-listed Roman Catholic church located at 78 Musgrave Road, Red Hill, City of Brisbane, Queensland, Australia. It was designed by Robin Dods and built from 1912 to 1914 by Thomas Keenan. It was added to the Queensland Heritage Register on 21 October 1992.
|St Brigid's Church, Red Hill|
St Brigids Church, 2009
|Location||78 Musgrave Road, Red Hill, City of Brisbane, Queensland, Australia|
|Design period||1900 - 1914 (early 20th century)|
|Built||1912 - 1914|
|Architectural style(s)||Arts & Crafts|
|Official name: St Brigids Church|
|Type||state heritage (built)|
|Designated||21 October 1992|
|Significant period||1912-1914 (fabric)|
|Significant components||furniture/fittings, pipe organ, stained glass window/s|
The original St Brigid's Red Hill church was blessed and opened on 30 December 1882. It replaced an earlier stone structure built in 1877.
As the parish grew to be one of the largest in Brisbane, a larger church was needed to accommodate 1000 people. The current Church's foundation stone was laid on 5 May 1912 and it was built from 1912 to 1914.
The parish was largely composed of poor Irish immigrants so that the church became a focal point of the Irish Catholic cause in Queensland.
The church was dedicated and opened on 9 August 1914. The opening ceremony was a significant occasion in the life of the Catholic community in Brisbane, attended by Archbishop of Melbourne Daniel Mannix and presided over by Archbishop of Brisbane James Duhig. The construction of St Brigid’s was regarded as the coming of age of Catholicism in Brisbane. For Duhig, who was to become renowned as a prolific builder of churches and schools, St Brigid’s was an auspicious beginning.
St Brigid’s Church is part of the Jubilee Catholic Parish including seven churches and three schools in the inner western suburbs of Brisbane.
Newsletters for the Jubilee Parish provide contact details and further information on the Parish.
St Brigid’s Church is significant as it is an icon on the inner Brisbane skyline, visible from all directions. The church is prominently situated high on Red Hill, unconventionally oriented north-south, to terminate the vista along George Street (now lost since the construction of the Brisbane Transit Centre). Its hilltop position, close to the city centre, makes it a Brisbane landmark.
St Brigid’s Church is significant as an example of Archbishop Duhig's efforts to place churches in prominent positions throughout Brisbane, and as a symbol of the emerging confidence of Catholicism in Queensland which was dominated by Irish immigrants at the time.
It is a brick fortress-like building, rectangular, with the chancel, entrance porch and its flanking buttresses semi-octagonal in shape. A single-storeyed vestry protrudes off the west side of the chancel. A single-storeyed vestry protrudes off the west side of the chancel.
Its design by Robert Smith Dods (commonly known as Robin S. Dods) was inspired by St Ceciles Cathedral at Albi, France, which the parish building committee had chosen as the model for St Brigid’s. It is an outstanding example, both internally and externally, of the architecture of Robin Dods, It reflects the influence of some of the design theories current in Europe during Dods's early career in Edinburgh, in particular the Arts and Crafts use of materials and the picturesque approach to landscape and siting. Many features of the building, including the high proportions, opening windows with balconies, arches, French doors, and the open chancel area, contribute to a cool environment.
The original plan included a tower above the chancel but this was not built for lack of funds. LJ Harvey's life size statue of St Brigid above the entrance porch, holds a model of the completed church.
The interior of St Brigid’s is austere and simple in decoration yet grand in dimensions. The detailing and workmanship in brick, stone, wood, glass and metal are austere but refined. Notable features include the timber ceiling, light fittings, gallery, organ, altars and stained glass. However, the original silky oak and leadlight doors running the length of the nave on the east and west walls, and some other fixed glazing, have been replaced with fully glazed areas which allow excessive light into the interior at floor level.
St Brigid's contains a recently renovated pipe organ in the choir loft that fills the church.
The place is important in demonstrating the evolution or pattern of Queensland's history.
St Brigids Church is significant as an example of Duhig's efforts to place churches in prominent positions throughout Brisbane and as a symbol of the emerging confidence of Catholicism in Queensland which was dominated by Irish immigrants at the time.
The place is important in demonstrating the principal characteristics of a particular class of cultural places.
St Brigids Church is significant as a characteristic part of the inner Brisbane skyline, visible from all directions. It is an outstanding example, both internally and externally, of the architecture of Robin Dods, a recognised member of the contemporary Arts and Crafts movement in Europe and the United States of America.
The place is important because of its aesthetic significance.
St Brigids Church is significant as a self-conscious townscape composition designed to place an acropolis-like skyline on the axis of George Street and for the impressive quality of the interior which is derived from the carefully considered combination of materials, light and scale.
- "St Brigids Church (entry 600284)". Queensland Heritage Register. Queensland Heritage Council. Retrieved 1 August 2014.
- "ST. BRIGID'S NEW CHURCH". The Brisbane Courier (17, 650). Queensland, Australia. 10 August 1914. p. 4. Retrieved 11 April 2017 – via National Library of Australia.
- "Home - Jubilee Catholic Parish Brisbane". Retrieved 11 April 2017.
- "St Brigid's Roman Catholic Church, Red Hill - Pierce Pipe Organs". Retrieved 11 April 2017.
This Wikipedia article incorporates text from "The Queensland heritage register" published by the State of Queensland under CC-BY 3.0 AU licence (accessed on 7 July 2014, archived on 8 October 2014). The geo-coordinates were computed from the "Queensland heritage register boundaries" published by the State of Queensland under CC-BY 3.0 AU licence (accessed on 5 September 2014, archived on 15 October 2014).
- Scott, Tim; Scott, T. (Tim), (compiler.) (2014), Upon this rock I will build my church : 100 years celebrations of - St. Brigid's, Red Hill -, Taringa, Queensland Edmund Community Christian Brothers, retrieved 4 January 2015
- "Unconventional Church Architecture St. Brigid's Roman Catholic Church, Red Hill, Brisbane", Building : the magazine for the architect, builder, property owner and merchant, 21 (122): 47, retrieved 24 November 2016 — ditigised and available online via the National Library of Australia