Sydenham Green - former Coptic Church site


A public art and landscape interpretation of the former Coptic church will be created in Sydenham Green when the building is demolished in early 2016.

Council is seeking stories, memories and images from the local community and the Coptic and Methodist communities that worshipped here. The project designer will use these to inform the design for a public artwork that honours the site’s history and the creativity of the Sydenham-St Peters area. The design will incorporate items salvaged from the site including the original foundation stones and the memorial plaque in the front fence.


Background

The building which originally housed

A public art and landscape interpretation of the former Coptic church will be created in Sydenham Green when the building is demolished in early 2016.

Council is seeking stories, memories and images from the local community and the Coptic and Methodist communities that worshipped here. The project designer will use these to inform the design for a public artwork that honours the site’s history and the creativity of the Sydenham-St Peters area. The design will incorporate items salvaged from the site including the original foundation stones and the memorial plaque in the front fence.


Background

The building which originally housed the Tempe Park Methodist Church opened in 1884 and was expanded in 1902 as the Methodist congregation grew. In 1968 the Coptic community purchased the building and it was reconsecrated as St Mary and St Mina's Coptic Church. It was the first Coptic Church in Australia and the first owned by Coptic migrants outside of Egypt.

Sydenham Green was created in 1994 when the third runway was built at Kingsford Smith Airport and 152 homes, made uninhabitable due to aircraft noise, were demolished. The St Mary and St Mina's Church moved to Bexley in 2001.

The former church building is severely degraded and beyond restoration. Attempts over many years to repurpose it by Council and the Coptic community have been unsuccessful. Council will soon demolish the building and commemorate the site’s history in a public art and landscape interpretation, informed by the community's memories.

Read updated information about the project in the news section below

Read the history of the project in the FAQs section.


Queries

Contact Fiona Cui Parks Project Manager 2 9392 5586 fiona.cui@innerwest.nsw.gov.au

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