History of Scots Church c.1824

The Scots-Memorial Heritage Collection conserves and interprets a collection of documents, artworks, books, objects, photographs, and ephemera relating to the Congregational Union and the Presbyterian Church in Hobart from the 1820s.

Memorial Church was opened in Brisbane Street, Hobart in 1872, replacing a smaller chapel built in 1832. In 1973 it combined with the congregation at Davey Street, Hobart.

Scots Church was initially established as St Andrew’s on the Bathurst Street site in 1824.

In 1977 the Congregational Union of Australia, the Methodist Church of Australasia and the Presbyterian Church of Australia united to form the Uniting Church in Australia.

The Scots Memorial Museum and Heritage Committee looks after the history and a collection of artefacts relating to different aspects of the church’s history and that of the other congregations which have now amalgamated.

Currently on display are items relating to the missionary work of the Reverend Robert Fraser in Epi.

The Scots Memorial precinct is steeped in local history.

The site shared a boundary with the Prisoners’ Barracks, a section of which remains to day.

St. Andrew’s Hall in the rear corner of the site is one of Hobart’s hidden gems dating from 1824 and is amongst the oldest church buildings in Australia.

The Scots Memorial Church is unique in its design and unlike anything else in Hobart. Its exterior is largely unaltered since it was built.

Note the beautiful Thwaites and Reed clock in the tower which could be seen for some distance due to the elevated site. It was one of six brought to the colony.

While the interior has undergone some changes over the years to make it relevant to current forms of worship, there is much that is still original.

The downstairs cedar pews all have doors on them and are numbered dating from when the pews were rented. The small brass clips are for communion glasses. St. Andrews Hall an historical artefact, also houses the history of this congregation and has museum displays open to all.

Following Union, the congregations of Memorial Church and Scots Church joined as Scots-Memorial and continue to worship at the Bathurst Street site.