Friends Meeting House, Adelaide

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Friends Meeting House, adjacent to St Peter's Cathedral

The Adelaide meeting house of the Religious Society of Friends ("Quakers") is situated on Pennington Terrace, North Adelaide, South Australia, literally in the shadow of St Peters Cathedral, on its west side. It is substantially made of timber, the only such church building in the City.[1] Besides Sunday meetings, weddings and the like, it has also hosted secular meetings, particularly for peace, education, temperance and other social causes. It also served briefly for Adelaide's Presbyterian congregation prior to construction of the Church of Scotland building on Grenfell Street,[2] also for the North Adelaide congregation of the Church of England.[3]

The land on which it stands was donated to the Society of Friends by church member J. Barton Hack. He also had the contract for construction of the prefabricated building, supplied by Henry Manning of London, around 1840.[4][5] (The rectory of Trinity Church, Adelaide was also a "Manning's portable cottage".)

Despite a prohibition on churchyard burials in the City of Adelaide, there were around seventeen graves in its tiny yard,[4] including that of J. B. Hack's child.[6] and a son and first wife of Joseph Barritt. From 1858 no further burials took place there, as a separate area had been reserved for Quakers at the West Terrace Cemetery.[7]

The meeting house significantly predates St. Peter's Cathedral, the land for which was purchased in 1862 and the foundation stone laid in 1869. A condition of the land sale was provision of a right of way to the meeting house.


  1. ^ The Old Order Changes The Register 14 February 1925 p.12 accessed 21 August 2011
  2. ^ "Advertising". Southern Australian. IV, (268). South Australia. 10 December 1841. p. 2. Retrieved 28 January 2017 – via National Library of Australia. 
  3. ^ "North Adelaide Church". Adelaide Chronicle And South Australian Literary Record. II, (XCIX). South Australia. 27 October 1841. p. 2. Retrieved 28 January 2017 – via National Library of Australia. 
  4. ^ a b Below the Pulpit - The Friends South Australian Register 7 September 1903 p.5 accessed 21 August 2011
    A nice article with lots of color
  5. ^ This reference has a contemporary sketch and recent photo of the building.
  6. ^ Notes and Queries The Register 29 December 1926 p.2 accessed 21 August 2011
  7. ^ Society of Friends The Mail (Adelaide) 28 July 1928 p.11 accessed 6 September 2011
    A potted history of South Australian Quakers, including details on outpost at Mount Barker

Further reading[edit]

  • Goldney, F. H. The Quaker Meeting House, North Adelaide, Pioneers Association of South Australia, 1968

External links[edit]

Coordinates: 34°54′46.1″S 138°35′52.9″E / 34.912806°S 138.598028°E / -34.912806; 138.598028