St Thomas’ New Life

Located in Young Street, Carrington, Kathryn, together with her husband Craig, undertook a slightly larger than expected renovation to bring back to life one of the suburb’s most loved buildings. The first service was held on 20th December, 1877 as part of the Parish of Wickham, Newcastle after the church was built from the ballast from sailing vessels coming into Newcastle Harbour and whatever else the builders could get their hands on. By 1924, the slab-built church had fallen into considerable disrepair; the current building was rebuilt in that same year on the existing piers and reused many original materials. The church enjoyed a long life and made a significant contribution to both the local and wider communities.  It was on 6th July, 2014, that the last service took place and St Thomas’ began the next part of its journey. The McGrath family purchased the church in September, 2014.  “Today the exterior doesn’t look too much different, and internally there used to be a lot more wood in the ceilings but other than that we have worked with the original structure,” said Kathryn. “We originally bought the property to be an office for my husband’s business. “In January 2015 we started work, mainly involving painting. The more time we spent here the more attached we became and so made the decision to make it our home as we never planned on selling, so we then started entertaining the idea of moving here, made a DA application for a residence and then the real work began.”