Mareeba Uniting Church. Image: State Library of Queensland
  • A bid has been launched to list The Uniting Church of Mareeba as a heritage site
  • This comes after the church announced plans to sell
  • The 1960's building designed by renowned architect Eddie Orbin

As a modernist church in far north Queensland goes up for sale, a bid is launched by the Australian Institute of Architects to protect the site.

The 1960’s building designed by renowned architect Eddie Orbin has received recognition in the Far North Queensland Regional Architecture Awards in 2014. The Jury had high praises for the building’s design.

“This church is an exquisitely conceived and executed building that has a sense of completeness from its external brick and timber fabric to its bespoke furniture and religious elements.

The building has a sense of enduring quality – and has endured – due to the skillful use of beautiful materials and details that are used sparingly yet are absolutely suited to their purpose.”

The Uniting Church of Mareeba recently announced intentions to sell the building. They told media “the expansion of a nearby roundabout, noise and changes in gatherings due to COVID-19,” were some of the factors that prompted the sale.

This has sparked fears that the building might be in danger of demolition.

As reported by the ACB, Shaneen Fantin, regional co-chair of the  Australian Institute of Architects said a submission to have the church listed on the Queensland Heritage Regester is in the works. It is hoped this will protect the site in the future.

“It is quite extraordinary and is an important part of our history in Australia, in that it was influenced by the American arts and craft movement.”

Eddie Orbin is a significant architect in Queensland having some of his buildings already listed on the Queensland Heritage Regester.

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