The first Anglican church was opened in 1868, near the site of the cemetery (Google Maps, but was later moved to a more central location. In 1933 it was destroyed by fire, and the current building was constructed.
CHURCH OF ENGLAND BAZAAR
A Bazaar was held at the Forth, on Thursday week, to help the funds of the new Church lately erected there. Despite the bad weather, &c, the attendance was very good, and fancy articles were disposed of to the amount of £52, a sum really to be wondered at, considering the dulness of the times. The Amateur Minstrel Band was engaged for the occasion, and dispensed sweet music, at intervals, from the store adjacent to the Bazaar Booth, and all went merry as a marriage bell. Outside, the young folks enjoyed themselves with football and cricket until the shades of evening fell. Taking the inclemency of the weather, hard times, &c., into consideration, the Forth Bazaar was a decided success.
Cornwall Chronicle, 11 April 1868
A new place of worship at the Forth in connection with the Church of England, was opened for Divine service on 27th April.
Launceston Examiner, 23 April 1868
[That might be the 27th March?]
Leith Rd, Forth. Google Maps
FIRE AT FORTH.
Church of England Demolished.
All Saints’ Church of England was completely destroyed by fire about I o’clock on Tuesday afternoon. The origin of the outbreak is a mystery, but it is thought that it commenced in the vestry as the result of a short circuit in the electric wires. Mr E Onions who was working at his home nearby first noticed smoke coming from under the roof of the building and gave the alarm “With the assistance of other residents the door of the church was burst open, but all that could be saved was five pews and four kneelers. The equipment included a fine pedal organ. It was impossible to save the building owing to the lack of water
The building, which was situated near the Budge Hotel, was originally erected about halfway between Forth and Leith at the site of the present Church of England cemetery. It was built about 64 years ago by the late Mr Michael Dooley, who later built St Joseph’s Roman Catholic Church and the Congregational Church Sir Edward Braddon, whose name is so well known in Tasmania because of his fine political record in the earlier days, used to attend this church. In 1893 the building was moved to the township, the contractor being the late Mr. A. M. Harman, late of Ulverstone. The police are investigating the origin of the fire.
Advocate, 27 April 1933
New Anglican Church at Forth
“A CREDIT TO THE DISTRICT.”
Commemoration Tablet Unveiled
“In the Faith of Jesus, Christ we unveil this stone in the name of God the Father, God the Son and God the Holy Ghost-Amen.”
These were the words of Major R. E. Smith when unveiling the commemoration tablet of the recently-completed All Saints Church of England at Forth yesterday afternoon. It was an impressive ceremony, and a large crowd from various parts of the Leven and Devonport municipalities was present. The gathering included Rev. B. S. Hammond, rector of the parish of Forth and Leven; Rev Mr. Browning, curate; Major R. E. Smith, an old resident of Forth, whose family has been associated with the church almost from its inception; Senator Herbert Hays, Mr. A. Lillico, M.L.C., Mr. F. B. Edwards, M.H.A., Cr. James Leary and many others actively associated with church and public life on the North-West Coast.
Following a prayer by’ the Rev. Browning, Major Smith unveiled the stone, which bore the inscription: “Unveiled by Major R. E. Smith, to commemorate the completion of the Church, March 24, 1936.” He removed several nails with a small figured blackwood hammer, and as the Union Jack fell aside it revealed the handsome commemoration stone of polished Tasmanian red granite. In unveiling the stone, Major Smith said it was an historic occasion in the history of Forth. It was in 1868 that the first church service took place at Forth, and the oldest residents had seen many changes. Many people had come and gone, but the old township remained about the same. The first Church of England was down the Leith road, he said, but later when the Forth township became established it was decided to remove the building to the present site. About five years ago the original building was destroyed. The church people were not satisfied until they had a new one, however, and the building just completed was certainly something of which they might feel proud. History of Forth. The ministers, he said, were giving their lives for the church in an endeavor to set a standard for the people, and the people should try to live up to that standard. He believed they appreciated what the clergy were doing and would give them all the assistance possible. He had come from Launceston to be present and, having been associated with the Church of England at Forth for so long, he felt honored indeed to have been asked to be associated with such an auspicious occasion in the history of the church.
Forth was first settled in 1840 he continued, and the first service there was taken by Bishop Nixon and Archdeacon Davis. Mr. Smith added that his mother was the first resident to be married in the church. Forth was the main centre for many years and had done wonderful work in “civilising” the North-West Coast. Forth had not gone back; it had simply stood still while the other centres advanced, but it was still an important centre. He was pleased to see so many old friends present, and were pleased to hear that they were doing so much for the church.
Dedication by the Bishop.
Rev. B. S. Hammond said they all appreciated the fact that Major Smith was present to officiate at the ceremony. “The people of Forth again have a sacred spot in which to worship their God, and I hope they will make full use of it,” he said. Continuing, Mr. Hammond said the church would be dedicated by the Bishop (Dr. R. S. lay) on Sunday, May 3, and he hoped on that occasion there would be an even greater number pre sent. Following the blessing, an adjournment was made to the Oddfellows’ Hall, where the ladies of the church provided afternoon tea. Following the refreshments, the rec tor referred to the fact that the church was designed by Mr. Richard Booth, under whose supervision it had been erected. He expressed thanks to him and the contractor (Mr. L. B. Sims) for the manner in which the work had been carried out.
Mr. Booth said the church was built on the same principle as the Elizabethan cottages in England, and was of real English design. He paid a tribute to the work of Mr. Sims, the builder, who, he said, had done every thing possible for a builder to do. In fact, he said, Mr. Sims had done a good deal more than his contract stipulated. As a’ memento of the occas ion, he asked Major Smith to accept a book entitled “Wanderings in Tasmania,” which, he said, was written by a friend of his who visited him at Ulverstone several years ago.
The building stands near the banks of the Forth River, just below the main road bridge on the Leith Road. It is built on the Elizabethan principle, half of it being timber. For a distance of 4 feet up the exterior walls there is weather-board; while the top portion is constructed of fibrolite sheets. The main church building is 4lft x 20ft.; while the vestry is 10 x 9 feet, and the baptistry and bell tower 8 x 8 feet. There is a dado of three ply inside the building, and the remainder of the walls is constructed of fibrous plaster. The attic ceiling is also of fibrous plaster. The leadlights in the eastern windows give a very pleasing effect; while the remainder of the windows are of white Arctic glass. An ecclesiastical effect in the trefoil of the windows gives the building added dignity. Electric lights are fitted, and the sanctuary will be floodlighted. The commemoration tablet is a handsome slab of polished Tasmanian red granite from Cole’s Bay, and was presented to the church by the company which’ is exporting granite from the quarries at Cole’s Bay to all parts of the mainland and New Zealand.
Advocate, 25 March 1936