Church Square, Pretoria

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Church Square (English) or Kerkplein (Afrikaans), is the historic centre of the city of Pretoria, South Africa.

Church Square.JPG
1: Statue Paul Kruger (Anton van Wouw)
2: Old ZAR Council Chamber (Sytze Wierda) 1891
3: Old Capitol Theatre (PR Cooke) 1931
4: Old Netherlands Bank (Wilhelm de Zwaan) 1897
5: Regskamers (Phillip, Carmicheal & Murray) 1891
6: Café Riche (Francois Soff) 1905
7: Palace of Justice (Sytze Wierda) 1902
8: Old Reserve Bank and Old Old Mutual Building (Baker & Leith and Frederick McIntosh Glennie) 1930 and 1929
9: Ons Eerste Volksbank (Cowin & Ellis) 1930
10: Barclays Bank (Gordon Leith) ca 1930
11: Tudor Chambers (John Ellis) 1904
12: Standard Bank (Stucke & Harrison) 1934
A: Bank of Africa (TA & FRE Sladdin) 1906
B: Old National Bank and Mint Building and Old National Bank Chambers (F Emley & Scott and unknown architect) 1892 and 1903
C: General Post Office (William Hawke) 1910

Its most prominent feature is the statue of the late Boer leader and president of the South African Republic Paul Kruger at its centre.[1] Statues of four anonymous Boer citizen-soldiers surround that of Kruger's on a lower level of the plinth.

Several historically and architecturally significant buildings surround the square: the Palace of Justice, the Old Capitol Theatre, the Tudor Chambers, the Ou Raadsaal (Old Council Chamber) and the General Post Office, which was designed by William Hawke.[2]

The turreted Palace of Justice was the scene of arguably the most famous political trial in South Africa's history, the Rivonia Trial. During this trial, Nelson Mandela and a number of other ANC terrorists were charged with treason, found guilty and subsequently incarcerated.

History[edit]

The first church was built on Church Square in 1856 by Skinner and Devereux, but burnt down in 1882.[2] This simple Cape Dutch style building was replaced by an early Gothic style building, built by Claridge, together with Leslie Simmonds.[2] This second church was demolished in 1904. According to a Minute of His Worship the Mayor (Andrew Johnson) for the Mayoral Year ending 25th October 1905, Municipality of Pretoria, a fountain was proposed for the square by Mr. Samuel Marks.[1] This piece in turn was moved to the Pretoria Zoo,[1] making way for the current collection of sculptures.

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c "Church Square". Retrieved 19 February 2014. 
  2. ^ a b c Meiring, Hannes (1977). Boukunsskatte van Suid-Afrika. Kaapstad: Human & Rousseau. p. 44. ISBN 0-7981-0806-1. 

External links[edit]

Coordinates: 25°44′47″S 28°11′18″E / 25.7465°S 28.1882°E / -25.7465; 28.1882