The heavenly trio sells

Castlemaine's Presbyterian Church Board of Management secretary Richard McArdle at the historic church property that has been snapped up after being listed for sale. Photo: Eve Lamb

Eve Lamb

A new chapter looks poised to play out for Castlemaine’s historic Presbyterian Church after the landmark Lyttleton Street property sold for a figure well above its listed price guide in recent days.
The historic property including 1894 church, 1861 manse and original 1856 hall, all set on about half an acre of prime elevated CBD land has sold for $2.3 million, Castlemaine’s Presbyterian Church Board of Management secretary Richard McArdle has confirmed.
The unique landmark property had been listed with a price guide of $1.5m-$1.65m.
Selling agent, Castlemaine’s Rob Waller had earlier confirmed there had been robust interest in the rare property after it was advertised on the open market as a “heavenly trio” and Mr McArdle this week told the Mail the property had drawn “some good offers” with at least four or five particularly interested parties.
“My understanding is that at the end it came down to Expressions of Interest involving two parties,” he said.
“We are very happy with the price.
“We were caught by surprise by the level of interest right up front.”
While details about the successful buyer have yet to be verified, Mr McArdle says he understands they are Melbourne-based and have some plans involving possible “community uses” for the heritage protected church building itself.
“My understanding is that the purchaser is from Melbourne and my understanding is that he will be looking at something for the church that can be used by the community,” Mr McArdle said earlier this week.
“My understanding is that they are probably looking to subdivide at least some of the property.
“The sale’s gone very well for us.”
The Presbyterian Church will now be looking to purchase another property deemed to be more readily able to meet the needs of its contemporary congregation which currently stands at around 30 to 40 faithful – instead of the 150 or so that the imposing Gothic church with its French-Romanesque architecture had been built to accommodate some 127 years ago. Read more in today’s Mail…

Eve Lamb
Journalist and photographer Eve Lamb has a Bachelor of Arts (Journalism) degree from Deakin University and a Master of Arts (Professional Writing) from Deakin University. She has worked for many regional newspapers including the Hamilton Spectator and the Warrnambool Standard, and has also worked for metro daily, The Hobart Mercury, and The Sunday Tasmanian. Eve has also contributed to various magazines including Australian Cyclist.