This neo-Gothic church, tucked in between ever-rising buildings on the intersection of Pulteney Street and North Terrace, is Adelaide’s second oldest church (Holy Trinity Anglican Church being the oldest).

107Immigrants Scots, in support of the Free Church of Scotland, brought the Rev John Gardner (picture courtesy of the State Library of South Australia) out from Scotland to help them establish the church. When Gardner arrived he found no real congregation. Undeterred and with that amazing zeal and devotion typical of the early pioneers Gardner set about raising funds and building a church. Less than six months after his arrival, the foundation stone for the church was laid on 8 September 1850. The church opened less than a year later on 6 July 1851though the 37 metre spire was not added until 1858. The church was originally call Chalmers Free Church after Dr James Chalmers who founded the Free Church of Scotland.

In 1901 the three branches of Presbyterianism in the State, represented by the Free Church, the United Presbyterian Church, and the Church of Scotland, united to form one Presbyterian Church in South Australia.

In 1929 the Flinders Street Presbyterian Church and Chalmers Church congregations amalgamated under the name of Scots Church. In 1955 the church on Flinders Street was sold to the YMCA and all activities transferred to Scots Church here on North Terrace. Also transferred to Scots from Flinders Street was its organ and stained glass windows. Unfortunately I have, to date, been unable to get into the church to see these – or anything else therein.


In 1977 Scots Church became part of the Uniting Church in Australia, a union within Australia which brought together the Congregational Union of Australia, the Methodist Church of Australasia and the Presbyterian Church of Australia.

Address: North Terrace
Directions: On the intersection of Pulteney Street and North Terrace
Website: http://scotschurch.org/

For my next Adelaide – NORTH TERRACE review click HERE.
For other Adelaide reviews click HERE.


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