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St. Peter's Anglican Church Registered Heritage Structure

St. Peter's Anglican Church, Twillingate, NL
St. Peter's Anglican Church, Twillingate, NL
St. Peter's Anglican Church, Twillingate, NL

Statement of Significance

Formal Recognition Type

Registered Heritage Structure

Description of Historic Place

St. Peter’s Anglican Church is a timber framed church built in the Gothic Revival style of architecture. Located in Twillingate, NL, St. Peter’s Anglican Church was built between 1839 and 1844 during the episcopacy of Bishop Edward Field. The designation is confined to the footprint of the building.

Heritage Value

St. Peter’s Anglican Church was designated a Registered Heritage Structure by the Heritage Foundation of Newfoundland and Labrador in 1998 due to its aesthetic and historic values.

St. Peter’s Anglican Church has aesthetic value as it is a good example of Gothic Revival style employed in an outport church. This church represents a simplified version of Gothic Revival and elements such as the exposed timber framing on the interior of the church embody the style of design inspired by Tractarian practices. Other Gothic features include pointed arch windows and doors, finials, bargeboard and a large bell tower with crenellation along the top. St. Peter’s Anglican Church is a good example of a typical High Anglican church built in rural Newfoundland during the Victorian period.

St. Peter’s Anglican Church also has aesthetic value for the quality of craftsmanship. Supervised by Andrew Pearce, St. Peter’s Anglican Church was built by the congregation of the church. The present condition of the church stands as a testament to the quality of craftsmanship during this period.

St. Peter’s Anglican Church has further aesthetic value for its landscape status in the community of Twillingate. The size of this church is in contrast to the other buildings in the community, making St. Peter’s Anglican Church an important part of Twillingate’s built landscape. Furthermore, the cemetery on the grounds of the church is valuable for its association with the people of Twillingate and the parishioners who helped in building the church.

St. Peter’s Anglican Church has historic value because of its longstanding role as the centre of the Anglican congregation in Twillingate. Consecrated by Bishop Edward Feild in 1845, the church is an important reflection of Bishop Feild’s work to expand the Anglican Church in Newfoundland. Bishop Feild had an important influence on religious, political and educational life of Newfoundland and Labrador during his episcopacy. The introduction of the Gothic Revival style was the architectural expression of Bishop Feild’s Tractarian views. A rural High Anglican Church, St. Peter’s Church represents the efforts at High Anglicanism of Bishop Field during his episcopacy.

Source: Heritage Foundation of Newfoundland and Labrador property file “Twillingate - St. Peter's Anglican Church - FPT 1331”

Character Defining Elements

All those elements that are representative of the Gothic Revival style of architecture including;
-number of storeys;
-steep gable roof;
-bell tower with crenellation, finials and spire;
-narrow wooden clapboard;
-wooden corner boards;
-bargeboard;
-size, style, trim and placement of wooden windows;
-stained glass windows;
-size, style, trim and placement of exterior wooden doors;
-layout of church;
-interior exposed timbers;
-adjacent cemetery, and;
-dimension, location and orientation of building.

Notes of Interest

St Peter's Anglican Church replaced an earlier church which had been built in 1827. While the main portion of the church was erected in 1842, it was not until 2 years later, in 1844, that the tower was completed. In 1862 the church parishioners subscribed to the purchase of the tower bell in grateful appreciation of the bountiful seal harvest of that year. In 1884 a chancel was added by Titus Manuel and built in memory of Edwin Duder. The church has a strong connection with St. James in Poole, Dorset, the home port of many of the Newfoundland merchants and in particular of John Slade. Slade contributed timbers to the building of St. James Church and acquired from that church the brass candle sconces which he gave to St. Peter's. The galleries in the church take its interior back to an earlier period of church design. It is interesting to note that Bishop Feild consecrated the church for he, as an ardent Gothic Revivalist, was strongly opposed to the use of galleries and had them removed from as many Newfoundland churches as he could.

Location and History

Community Twillingate
Municipality Town of Twillingate
Civic Address St. Peter's Church Road, Northside
Construction 1842 - 1844
Builder
Abraham Pearce and William J. Murphy
Style Gothic Revival
Building Plan Rectangular Short Façade
Website Link https://www.facebook.com/anglicanparishoftwillingate