Sunday, 30 November 2014

St Mathew's Close, New Norfolk

St Mathew's Close is a typically English style building constructed of hand made bricks and hand hewn timbers. The term "Close" is a religious term of attachment to the surrounds of a church and St Mathew's Close is closely connected to the historic St Mathew's Church in New Norfolk.

In 1866 when the Close was constructed, the land upon which it stood, and its surrounding area was "vested in the trustees of the property of the United church of England & Ireland in Tasmania" by the government. The close building first played its part in church affairs as a Sunday School. In 1890, the building was enlarged with a new wing being added to the northern side of the building and in the early 1900's, it became known as the Church of England parish hall as well as continuing its role as a Sunday School.

By 1969, the Close was opened in its present form as a place for the display of local early settlers artifacts and as a place to display and sell items produced by local artists and artisans. The Close still continues to serve the church as it has since its inception but these day in a different role for what it was first built. The profits made within the walls from the sale of products and handicrafts goes to aid in the ongoing preservation of the St Mathew's Church which had it's humble beginnings in 1823 as a Sunday School.

Main Information Source - Hand Painted Plaque in the wall inside The Close.