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A drone image of Erskine Chapel, set in the hills of Island Bay, Wellington NZ

Take a closer look...

 “The magnificent interior of the Chapel is one of the finest New Zealand spaces built in the Gothic tradition. It is remarkable for its windows and structural embellishments, its furniture, its acoustics, the quality of light and the soaring immensity, and the paradoxically intimate devotional space that has been formed.”  Heritage New Zealand. 

Erskine Chapel has exceptional architectural, historical and social significance and as such, is listed as a Heritage New Zealand Category 1 Historic Place and recognised in the Wellington City Council Heritage List.

The chapel sits on the site of the former Erskine College in Island Bay, Wellington, and now home to Erskine Island Bay – an award-winning residential development of 97 homes.

The Chapel was designed by John Sydney Swan, at the invitation of the Sacré Coeur nuns. Swan was one of Wellington’s most important architects of the early twentieth century, and originally designed the school’s main block two decades earlier also. The chapel was constructed using unreinforced brick masonry walls, timber, steel and concrete, during 1929-30.

Erskine Chapel is considered to be New Zealand’s finest French Gothic-style chapel, influenced heavily by a chapel in Alsace Lorraine. It features a soaring vaulted ceiling, an interior of Italian Carrara marble and glorious acoustics – regarded as amongst the best in the Southern hemisphere. It certainly attracted many musicians of note over the years, including the Vienna Boys Choir several times. ​

Take a moment to appreciate some key heritage moments within Erskine Island Bay. 

A history in images. 

Take in the rich heritage of Erskine College.

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