Story: Public, commercial and church architecture

First Church, Dunedin (1st of 4)

First Church, Dunedin

The Gothic revival style continued to be the main idiom for church building in the late 19th century. Dunedin's First (Presbyterian) Church remains the most splendid example. It was designed by the young Melbourne architect Robert Lawson, who crossed the Tasman Sea to oversee its construction. This began in 1867, and the church opened in 1873. It was built of brick and faced with Ōamaru limestone. The dominant feature was a tower and soaring spire. A series of turrets, pinnacles and gables also directed the eye upwards (towards heaven). The church is shown here in 2006. 

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Otago Daily Times
Photograph by Stephen Jaquiery

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How to cite this page:

Ben Schrader, 'Public, commercial and church architecture - Buildings of substance, 1860 to 1900', Te Ara - the Encyclopedia of New Zealand, (accessed 22 May 2022)

Story by Ben Schrader, published 22 Oct 2014