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Byron Shire
January 26, 2022

Sale of St Oswald’s

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To my utter disbelief the Grafton Diocese has decided it should sell the St Oswald’s church building and land.

This land was donated by the Goard Family and their son donated £50 for the building. The community raised the balance of the funds for the building, as set out in the newspaper article from The Byron Record dated February 1921.

The Anglican Church’s community license should be that it either gets handed back to the community, or to the original family.

As an altar boy at St Andrew’s Anglican Church at Byron Bay during the mid-1970s, under the great leadership of Rector Robert Coutts, I thought the values of the Anglican Church would be more sympathetic to the local parishioners.

I would urge that you connect with the Broken Head community or rather the whole Northern Rivers region before dumping what a community paid for.

Geoff Bensley, Byron Bay

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  1. Perhaps the Anglican Church could flog off St Andrew’s cathedral in Sydney; surely that would add more to its reparations fund. Or maybe sell its very considerable CBD real estate holdings – among the biggest and most valuable in the state.

    The sooner the churches (and according to the report of the royal commission, there are none innocent of child sexual abuse) are bankrupted the better off our society will be. And tax them, too; they are among the nation’s most successful businesses yet remain untaxed. The relative pittance they spend on ‘charity’ works is by no measure balanced by their untaxed profits.

  2. I’m not religious but it seems to me the people calling for it be saved don’t go to that church. Maybe if it’s attendance was better than it wouldn’t be sold. Make a great community hall with all that cedar.

  3. As the mother of two veteran sons, one ex Army, the other ex-Navy, I am appalled that the Anglican Church is even considering selling this memorial to two fallen soldiers!
    The families of the “boys” would have hoped and expected that the acts of supplying the land, and building the church, would have ensured that the sacrifice of their sons would be remembered and honoured in perpetuity.

    As a fairly new resident of a small country town in Victoria, I an a proud member of a co-op that bought the town’s only store, cleaned it up and gave it new life. Perhaps the St Oswald’s community and supporters could find other uses for the church, beside its parish duties, and form a cop-op to manage it?

    Stop the church selling it!


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