Biography - Francis Russell Nixon

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Biography - Francis Russell Nixon

The first Bishop of Tasmania


Nixon, Francis Russell (1803–1879)

by W. R. Barrett

This article was published in Australian Dictionary of Biography, Volume 2, (MUP), 1967

Francis Russell Nixon (1803-1879), Church of England bishop, was born on 1 August 1803, the second son of Rev. Robert Nixon, D.D., F.R.S., of North Cray, Kent, England. He was educated at Merchant Taylors' School, London, and at Oxford (B.A., 1827; M.A., 1841; D.D., 1842). Graduating third class in classics he was made a probationary fellow of St John's College. After ordination he served as chaplain to the embassy at Naples and was then appointed one of the 'Six Preachers' at Canterbury Cathedral and chaplain to the archbishop. He next held the parish of Sandgate and the perpetual curacy of Ash next Sandwich. In January 1843, to provide funds for a chapel of ease at Ash, he published Lectures, Historical, Doctrinal and Practical, on the Catechism of the Church of England; it went through at least six editions.

On 21 August 1842 Nixon was appointed first bishop of Tasmania and three days later was consecrated in Westminster Abbey with four other bishops. With his wife and children, their governess and Archdeacon Fitzherbert Marriott, he sailed in the Duke of Roxburgh. At Cape Town, where no Anglican bishop was appointed until 1847, he confirmed some four hundred persons, consecrated a church and ordained a priest. Arriving at Hobart Town in July 1843, he was received by civic and ecclesiastical leaders, took the oaths and was made a member of the Executive Council. His letters patent were read, creating Van Diemen's Land a separate diocese, St David's Church a cathedral and Hobart a city. A week later he was enthroned. His first official residence was in Upper Davey Street; after three years he moved to Boa Vista in Argyle Street (later part of the Friends' School), and in 1850 he bought Runnymede at New Town, renaming it Bishopstowe.

Nixon soon sized up the needs of his diocese and within eighteen months sent Marriott to England for help; in particular he wanted men for more adequate spiritual ministrations; and money to build churches and schools. Most remarkable of all was his request for money to establish a college on English university lines for the higher education of colonial youth and for training them for holy orders. The archdeacon's mission was highly successful in obtaining both men and money: in 1846 the Launceston Church Grammar School was opened in May, the Hutchins School in Hobart in August, and Christ's College at Bishopsbourne in October.

Nixon was soon in collision with Lieutenant-Governor Sir John Eardley-Wilmot on the discipline of clergymen within the diocese. Wilmot acknowledged the bishop's control over colonial chaplains even though they were paid by the government, yet he continued to employ and pay two of them whose licences had been withdrawn by Nixon for unbecoming behaviour. His reason for thus thwarting the bishop was that these chaplains had not been 'tried and convicted', although he knew the bishop had no court. The problem of chaplains attached to the convict establishments was, however, more difficult. On 29 May 1844 Nixon put his case clearly in a letter to Lord Stanley; he refused to ordain, licence or have any official responsibility for chaplains to the convicts because they could be appointed, dismissed and restored without his privity and were therefore exclusively under civil jurisdiction. To avoid a clash, Wilmot called these chaplains 'religious instructors' and claimed that their ordination was not an essential qualification. After lengthy correspondence between Nixon, the lieutenant-governor, the secretary of state and the archbishop of Canterbury, a reasonable compromise was reached: the governor was to submit appointments and removals for the bishop's consent, and any disagreements were to be settled by consultation between Downing Street and Canterbury. Stanley hoped to ease tension by appointing Marriott 'superintendent of convict chaplains', but although the plan was supported by the archbishop of Canterbury, it angered Nixon as another instance of lay interference with episcopal authority. Through respect for Stanley and confidence in his archdeacon, he agreed to allow Marriott to act as superintendent, but only by his episcopal authority. Dissatisfied with this solution, Nixon went to England in 1846-48, but he got little support from the archbishop and none from the government. He was able, however, to denounce the convict system which was turning the colony, he said, into 'the lazar house of the British dominions'. In 1847 he gave evidence before a House of Lords committee on the pitiable state of the convicts and the evils of transportation. His plain speaking contributed to the abolitionists' victory in 1853 and also helped to solve the problem of chaplains to the convicts.

Nixon had other difficulties with some of the clergy who had been in the colony before his arrival. Having tasted independence, they did not submit gracefully to his authority and looked on him as an interloper. The senior chaplain, Rev. William Bedford of St David's Church, was quite open in opposition. Three times he refused to produce his commission for inspection and, when Nixon insisted on using his cathedral for Lenten lectures, Bedford and his church wardens asserted their parochial rights over St David's, threatening to close the doors against him and to appeal to the civil authorities against his 'aggression'. The bishop's letters patent enjoined him to 'visit all Rectors, curates and chaplains' in the diocese 'with all manner of jurisdiction, power and coercion ecclesiastical', but they did not authorize the establishment of a consistorial court with power to compel the attendance of witnesses or to examine them on oath. Nixon sought this authority from the lieutenant-governor without success, for other denominations were suspicious. An appeal to London resulted in May 1849 in supplementary letters patent that omitted power to set up a court, and with no strengthening of his disciplinary power his difficulties were increased. The problem was not solved until, in consultation with his clergy and laity, the constitution of a synod was hammered out and given legal effect by the Tasmanian parliament on 5 November 1858. Next May the first synod met for thirteen days. One feature of it was that the laity shared equally with the bishop and clergy in management of the church's affairs. Its principal business was to pass acts for the trial of ecclesiastical offences, for the patronage of parishes and for a general church fund on a voluntary basis in preparation for the withdrawal of state aid.

In October 1850 Nixon went to Sydney for the historic meeting of the six Australasian bishops. Publication in Tasmania of the 'Minutes' of this meeting caused great controversy. The Oxford Movement and ritual question were already disturbing the churches and in some quarters Nixon and a number of his new clergy were accused of Puseyite tendencies. This was far from true; in November 1844 in a dramatic scene at the cathedral Nixon had read a protest against the appointment of a Roman Catholic bishop in Tasmania and solemnly placed the document on the altar. In his visitation charge to the clergy in 1851, he clearly enunciated his 'full belief that soundness in the faith with regard to the sacraments of Christ is a probation against Romanism on the one hand and Puritanism on the other'. Nevertheless publication of the 'Minutes' brought addresses and counter-addresses to the bishop. The chief cause of unrest was the statement on baptismal regeneration, an aftermath of the Privy Council judgment on the Gorham case. Those who feared that the true faith was being undermined in the diocese formed an 'association of members of the Church of England for maintaining in Van Diemen's Land the principles of the Protestant Reformation'. Led by Rev. Henry Fry they published a protest in the form of a 'solemn declaration', maintaining among other things the right of private judgment. With a high sense of his office and prerogatives, and of the need for discipline, Nixon maintained that private judgment in matters on which the church had declared her faith in the Book of Common Prayer and the Thirty-nine Articles was not consistent for any member of that church. He therefore refused preferment to anyone who had been a party to the protest. After long trouble and tension, his attitude mellowed, and on 1 June 1855 the Tasmanian Church Chronicle, reporting his third visitation, paid this tribute: 'we must be allowed to record our admiration of the perfect confidence and cordiality with which the Bishop placed himself in the hands of his clergy. His Lordship is better understood now than he seems to have been four years ago'. In recommending rather than enjoining the introduction of a weekly offertory to help the church to be self-supporting, he set a fine example by giving a tenth of his government income and other generous sums.

In the controversy between churches and government over subsidized education the bishop joined with vigour. Earlier, religious instruction of an Anglican type had a prominent place in the public day schools. In May 1839, however, a newly appointed Board of Education changed to a quasi-secular system, which provided for daily Bible readings but forbade denominational teaching, although allowing clergy the right to teach children of their church at convenient hours. Anglicans protested without avail against the spending of public funds on a system of religious education which denied the majority church the right to instruct her children in their own faith. The bishop urged clergy and people to repudiate state aid on these conditions, and to establish church schools financed by their own efforts, and where that was not possible, to organize Sunday schools.

Nixon never spared himself in the pastoral oversight of his large diocese, which included King Island, the Furneaux group and even Norfolk Island. In 1849 his yacht was stolen and never recovered, but he still contrived to visit the Bass Strait islands and northern Tasmanian settlements. His Cruise of the Beacon, published in 1854 with his own illustrations, records one such visit. At his home, between travelling, he had interviews, voluminous correspondence, administrative duties, reading and the preparation of sermons and lectures. Even so, he found time for his family and for music, sketching and painting.

In 1847 he was described as 'a remarkable man both in appearance and character, good-looking, coal-black hair … piercing black eyes, and full, rather thick lips; tenacious of his rights, extremely anxious to be correct with regard to costume and all other points of etiquette, devoted to the fine arts and a beautiful draughtsman'. But twenty years of pioneering took their toll. After illness in 1862 he went to England hoping to improve his health and to return next year. But he was no better and resigned from 19 August 1863, telling the archbishop of Canterbury that he could not conscientiously retain his office with satisfaction to himself or with efficiency to the church. He was given the important living of Bolton Percy, Yorkshire, but his health did not improve. In 1865 he retired to Vignolo on Lake Maggiore, Italy, which he loved. The milder climate brought benefit, although he was seldom free from his 'tooth-ache in the back'. He died on 7 April 1879, and was buried in the British cemetery at Stresa.

Nixon married three times. In 1829 he married Frances Maria Streatfield (d.1834) by whom he had three children, Frances Maria, Robert and Harriet. In 1836 he married Anna Maria, daughter of Charles Woodcock; they had eight children. Anna Maria was a devoted wife who acted as his secretary. She also sketched and played the organ at St David's. Two years after Anna's death at Vignolo on 26 November 1868, Nixon married Flora Elizabeth Muller, who bore him two sons.

In the new cathedral in Hobart Nixon is remembered by a stained glass window and by the side chapel. A portrait in oils by Rev. J. Dixon is in the possession of Holy Trinity Church, Launceston. A number of his water-colours are in the Diocesan Registry, Hobart, and others in private hands.

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Recent guest feedback - thank you!

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Recent guest feedback - thank you!

  • Adam Stanyer

    The Old Bishop's House was all that the listing offered, great location and apartment, close to shops and places to eat. Booking was easy as was the check in and check out. Very much recommended.

    March 2016

  • Elizabeth Margaronis

    We spent a weekend at Rebecca's historic school house and it was a wonderful base from which to explore Hobart! Rebecca was friendly, warmly welcoming and very helpful, giving us excellent recommendations and providing a very interesting history of the accommodation. The school house itself is DIVINE - cannot be faulted! The neighbourhood of Sandy Bay is easily one of the prettiest areas of Hobart, and so close to the hot spots in Salamanca and Battery Point. The house is gorgeously renovated, it felt like a 5-star hotel - it was supremely clean and included beautiful touches like bath robes, heated towel racks and Sukin bath products. Absolute luxury!

    What Elizabeth loved about your listing: 
    Thank you so much for having us, Rebecca! We fell in love with the school house - it was beautiful. We really appreciate how easy it was to organise our stay with you, and for your warm welcome (even though we arrived so late!). We will definitely be recommending the school house to our family and friends!

    February 2016

  • Kate Newstead

    Beautiful spot from which to explore Hobart!

    February 2016

  • Steve Tognazzini

    Well what can I say! Rebecca just ruined Airbnb for me because I don't think I will ever stay in a listing as beautiful as Monty's School House was. Everything about it was just amazing and we were just upset that we had to leave. We will 100% be back here again and I would recommend this to anyone and everyone!

    What Steve loved about your listing: 
    Thank you so much Rebecca for letting us stay at your beautiful property. We had a wonderful time and will 100% be back in the future.

    February 2016

  • Gerard Sholly

    only an overnight which was disappointing as the accom is a perfect base from which to explore the city.Rebecca was very friendly and helpful in getting me settled in and explaining the unique studio apartment's many features. Great find and I will be back again.

    What Gerard loved about your listing: 
    unique and quiet.great touches in the apartment

     What Gerard thought you could improve about the experience: 
    no problems at all.

    February 2016

  • Iain Barr

    We had a really fantastic time here. The retractable roof was amazing.

    February 2016

  • Coco Zhou

    Nice location, space is spotless. Very modern and chic. Rebecca is helpful and flexible .

    February 2016

  • Marc Budge

    Remarkably situated with a splendid water view, Monty's Schoolhouse is a 'must stay' in Hobart. Beautifully presented, well equipped, it was a pleasure to stay here whilst visiting all Hobart now has to offer. Would not hesitate to recommend this airbnb....in fact, I may just have to stay again! !...next time....

    February 2016

  • Robert Mamone

    We found Rebecca's apartment to be very clean, super modern and stylish and in a fantastic location within walking distance to Salamanca. Access was easy and Rebecca's instructions and communication easy to follow. Would highly recommend this apartment and would certainly stay here again if returning to Hobart!

    What Robert loved about your listing: 
    My friends and I had a fantastic weekend in Hobart and your accommodation was perfect for us. In fact since I've been back another friend of mine has since told me she stayed with you also. Would highly reccommend.

    February 2016

  • Chris Troiani

    In Hobart for short notice business meetings. All corp approved hotels were booked solid due, or suupid $$$ for a Motor-Inn, so tried AirBNB. Found this for a reasonable price in a great location. Rebecca was responsive - the residence was absolutely fantastic. For the price easily the best $$$ stay i have ever had short notice in Hobart. I very rarely give 5 stars but the price and the accommodation given the short notice - and the quality of the residence was a suprise to say the least. The only disappointing fact was given i was here on business (late night / early morning start), i couldnt enjoy the residence to my full advantage. But definately will return and have a weekend in Hobart and stay here. I will also stay here when on business. Thankyou Rebecca and see you again soon.

    What Chris loved about your listing: 
    Fantastic.

    February 2016

  • Alison Atkinson

    We had a great time staying at Rebecca's hideaway. The service was excellent, the room lovely and the location perfect. We would definitely recommend staying here for all those travelling to Hobart!

    What Alison loved about your listing: 
    Everything!

    What Alison thought you could improve about the experience: 
    Nothing, we had a great time.

    February 2016

  • Ian Todd

    Rebecca is the perfect host and exuded a genuine warmth and welcome. The accommodation matched and exceeded our expectations. It truly is a little bit of luxury. Ideally situated for walking down to Sandy Bay and local shops just around the corner. It was lovely to come back to the flat every day and chill. Lovely outdoor seating area and barbecue. All this and complementary home baking. Who could ask for anything more.

    What Ian loved about your listing: 
    Well appointed spacious accommodation and the perfect hostess

    February 2016

  • Judy Ryon

    My husband and I had a wonderful stay at Monty's School House. Rebecca was a very gracious host; we were greeted warmly and assisted in bringing our belongings into the accommodation. Rebecca was very helpful when we left a pair of glasses at a friend's house and made sure that we received them. The renovation of the school house was very well done. The bedroom and bath were extremely comfortable, the kitchenette had all you could need, and the gas fire was divine as we arrived on a rainy, cold day. All in all, a great experience and we would definitely stay again and recommend it to others.

    What Judy loved about your listing: 
    Thank you for all your help Rebecca. You were a great host!

    February 2016

  • Baz Williams

    I have stayed at quite a number of Airbnb lodgings so far, Rebecca's listings would have to be the most amazing i have yet to experienced. The photo's as vast as they are do not do the space Rebecca and her husband have created justice, the facilities are just stunning and the views from the front window over the gardens to the beach are striking. At risk of locking myself out of this listing when we visit Hobart again I can only suggest if you are looking for lodgings in Hobart you could not find a better space to stay.

    February 2016

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Tasmania now a foodie’s gem

February 13, 2016 12:00am

EMMA HOPE

Mercury

 

Peacock and Jones manager Emma Devlin, left, with chef Jeff Workman. Picture: SAM ROSEWARNE

 

TASMANIA’s  produce has long been regarded as among the best in the nation — but the state’s chefs weren’t always held in the same esteem.

As local farmer, food critic and TV personality Matthew Evans said: “Tasmania was widely known for having the best produce in the nation, but the worst chefs.”

Not any more. An explos­ion of new eateries is giving the state a growing reputation as “becoming a pit-stop on the Michelin circuit”, according to a British journalist.

“In the past decade ... Tasmania has quietly earned its culinary credentials and ­become a pilgrimage-worthy destination for dinner,’’ Mark Ellwood wrote in theIndependent this week.

With 25 new restaurants opening last year in the Hobart area alone, Mercury food critic Graeme Phillips says the state is fast ­becoming a foodie mecca.

“The restaurant scene has really caught up with the produce quality,” Mr Phillips said.

“The changes in the past 10 years have been dramatic, and it seems to be accelerating.”

When Luke Burgess opened Garagistes in 2010, it put Tasmania on the map as a food destination.

It was one of the state’s first restaurants to introduce communal seating, a share plate menu and a no-bookings policy; all common practice in Hobart now.

Tasmania’s chefs are getting more respect, says Matthew Evans.

Mr Burgess, who has worked at Tetsuya’s in Sydney and Noma in Copenhagen, said we were becoming ­increasingly known for our gourmet food.

“Everyone is aware of Tasmania now, it’s got a strong brand and there’s a romantic view of the place,” he said.

Hobart’s newest culinary attraction is the “hidden gem” Peacock and Jones restaurant in Hunter St, Salamanca.

“Seeing how the Hobart foodie scene embraces a new restaurant is so refreshing,” front of house manager Emma Devlin said.

“While Hobart’s still got that laid-back country town feel it’s quite ­progressive in its food, wine, whisky, and beer. It’s all happening here and every time I walk around the city something else has popped up.”

Head chef Jeff Workman (formerly of Saffire Freycinet) focuses on local seasonal produce such as Flinders Island lamb, seafood and hand-picked fruit and vegetables.

“The chef is harvesting a lot of produce himself,” Ms Devlin said.

“So at the moment we have Jeff’s vet’s drunk mulberries. When he took his dog to the vet he noticed mulberries hanging over the fence, and we ended up with them on our menu.”

Ms Devlin said the food was approachable and refined but not pretentious.

Peacock and Jones is one of many Tasmanian restaurants listed in the Good Food Guide’s top 500 restaurants.

New Hobart restaurants such as Aloft on the Brooke Street Pier and tapas bar The Black Footed Pig also make the list.

Two Cygnet cafes — The Lotus Eaters and Red Velvet Lounge — were also recognised.

Intimate 20-seat restaurant Templo, on the outskirts of the city, was opened last year by Matt Breen and Chris Chapple and has also made the list.

“We make sure that everything that enters the restaurant produce-wise is local and as fresh as you can get. And the love that we’re putting into the food seems to resonate with diners,” Mr Breen said.

“We’ve got the most beautiful produce right here on our doorstep so if we have access to that then obviously the food that’s going to be produced from our restaurants is going to be amazing.”

Award-winning chef David Moyle made the move from the Stackings at Woodbridge to Franklin in the old Mercury building in the city and continues to make waves with his cooking.

The constant stream of new restaurants and cafes opening around Hobart is com­plemented by mainstays such as Chinese offering Me Wah, Three Japanese in Battery Point, Mona’s The Source and Salamanca’s Smolt.

The decision by Tourism Australia to pick Hobart to host the finale to its $40 million Restaurant Australia campaign in November shows how far the state’s food scene has come.

Invite The World to Dinner had 100 of the world’s most ­influential foodies including Heston Blumenthal, Alice ­Waters, A.A Gill and Sanjeev Kapoor dine at Mona which led to a stream of international publicity about food from ­Tasmania.

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Recent guest feedback

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Reviews are written at the end of a reservation through Airbnb. Reviews you’ve received will be visible both here and on your public profile.

  • Elena Venturini

    Wow this place is amazing... Once you arrive & be greeted by the every soo lovely Rebecca the school house is such an beautiful place you will not want to leave. We loved our stay here & loved hobart. It ticks every box for a beautiful romantic weekend away. We will definitely be back & recommend it to anyone that we know that is coming to vist Hobart. Old + New modern fixtures & fittings = An amazing place to stay & walking distance to all the great spots

    February 2016

  • Liz Kennedy

    We had a fantastic 2 day stay. The accommodation was truly lovely and to a very high standard. Very clean and comfortable and beautifully designed. Perfect for my husband, myself and our 2 kids. Everything was even better than I imagined. Situated in a great location, it was very easy to get around and see what beautiful Hobart had to offer. Rebecca was a wonderfully warm and helpful host and made us feel extremely welcome. I cant recommend The Old School House highly enough, I can not find one negative with this lovely place or its host. Can't wait to return again soon.

    February 2016

  • Brett Hughes

    Rebecca's cabin was great; very cosy, very well appointed and unbelievably great was the retracting roof for sleeping under the stars! The nice toiletries a lovely touch too and the apple tv and sonos facilities really finish it off. Very quiet and secluded with lovely surrounds in the best part of Hobart. Will be back again!

    February 2016

  • Elisa Buggy

    Rebecca's hideaway is simply gorgeous. Check in/out process was super smooth and the room was fitted like a five star hotel with complete privacy and peace. Thanks so much Rebecca (and Will!) - we recommend this place to all of you looking for a quiet, peaceful hideaway in Hobart with Salamanca only 10 mins walk away. Perfect.

    February 2016

  • Gina Goble

    2 couples, a weekend in Hobart in February, a great place to stay within walking distance of central Hobart. Rebecca was very thoughtful and helpful - the views across the water beautiful. We couldn't have had a better time.

    February 2016

  • Aisling Gaffney

    We had an amazing stay at Montys Hideaway. It is a beautiful space! I loved the retractable roof especially. Location was perfect to stroll down to Salamanca markets and lots of lovely places to eat nearby. I would definitely recommend this accommodation to anyone travelling to Hobart :-)

    February 2016

  • Matthew Wall

    We enjoyed two nights at this beautiful, modern, and clean accommodation. Rebecca was very friendly and we were shown through the property on arrival. Location was fantastic with Sandy Bay shops a short stroll away, as too Salamanca. Highly recommended if you are visiting Hobart.

    What Matthew loved about your listing: 
    Thank you so much for setting up the cot for our daughter. We had a lovely stay even though it was too short!

     What Matthew thought you could improve about the experience: 
    You can't - just keep smiling and best of luck with the business!

    February 2016

  • Betty Hanan

    Rebecca is an excellent host, the place was well and tastefully equipped and perfect for two couples. It is well located, sone ten minutes walk to Salamanca Square where many restaurants are located. We enjoyed our stay in the flat and our overall stay in Hobart. We highly recommend the place.

    February 2016

  • Lauren Fitzgerald

    We had a lovely stay in Hobart at the tutors apartment. It's a gorgeous space, great location, beautiful view, very private, with all the mod cons and a little luxury. Loved the outlook on the garden from the bathroom! Rebecca was a super friendly and very accommodating host. Would recommend it to anyone!

    February 2016

  • Marcel Van Der Schoot

    Brilliant place and brilliant host! Rebecca was very accommodating with my constantly changing work schedule, and a natural, lovely host in general! I stayed 3 nights and if I didn't have a plane to catch to Antarctica they wouldn't have got me out of there!:) The place I stayed was a unique little place at the corner of their lovely old property, owned by a lovely family. It is a cleverly converted shipping container, very stylish with all mod cons, everything is brand new and the retractable roof is great fun for stargazing from the fab bed. The room has one wall almost entirely as a 3 panel wide sliding glass door on to a deck with views of Sandy Bay. And you can walk everywhere really. Hobart of course is a gem no matter where you stay, but here it was one of the best.

    February 2016

  • Tucker & Jessica Teutsch

    What a great place! This may be our favorite airbnb stay ever, and really sold us on Hobart and Tasmania in general. The comfy and modern remix of an old structure really works well, and we loved waking up every morning in the large bed with the sun shining through the atrium. Nice technological touches, a great bathtub, and an awesome central location makes this a must-do stay if you get the chance.

    February 2016

  • Ilona Topolcsanyi

    A lovely place to stay for a couple. Modern, clean and well located. We walked almost everywhere in Hobart as this little unit was so close to everything. We loved the openable roof in the bathroom and bedroom.

    February 2016

  • Nicole White

    Fantastic location (10 min walk to Salamanca) and beautiful apartment. Highly recommend to all.

    February 2016

  • Mitchell King

    Rebecca was a lovely host who went above and beyond for our Group. The apartment is amazing and is highly recommended.

    February 2016

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Recent feedback from our guests - thank you!

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Recent feedback from our guests - thank you!

Reviews are written at the end of a reservation through Airbnb. Reviews you’ve received will be visible both here and on your public profile.

  • Lachlan Davis

    Beautiful apartment which is part of an historic old home but still very private. Great location in Hobart (around 10 mins walk to Salamanca) and extremely pleasant hosts. Really enjoyed our stay.

    January 2016

  • Ella Newbury

    Beautiful and spotless accommodation, great location and very comfortable stay. We are two couples and found the space and amenities more than adequate and surpassed our expectations. Highly recommend a stay here!!

    January 2016

  • Trish O'Connor

    This was a fabulous experience! The room and ensuite were even better than the images suggested. We loved the fact we could sleep without a roof overhead during our stay. The neighbourhood is beautiful - lovely old homes and friendly people. We were able to walk everywhere - the hills kept us fit :-) We didnt see our hosts but they were contactable by text and provided us with extra towels as soon as we asked for them (we were there for four nights). We have no hesitation in recommending this accommodation - hope you enjoy it as much as we did.

    January 2016

  • James Turner

    Well our first Airbnb experience was an absolute delight. Both the property and Bec & Dermot our hosts were outstanding. The apartment we had within the Housekeepers Quarters was appointed easily to the equivalent of a 5 star hotel. The quality of the styling, fittings and furnishing was first rate, with little touches such as top notch toiletries, a great Sonus sound system, iPad and fresh milk and orange juice in the fridge on arrival. Comfy beds, soft towels, impeccably clean bathrooms and a great big bath were sumptuous highlights. For a self stated novice when they started with Airbnb, Bec has created a luxurious and comfortable property. The grounds are beautiful, the view is stunning and all the small details have been attended to such as private secure access and a comprehensive guide to eating and touring in the area. We felt instantly welcomed and at ease like as if we were friends dropping in to stay. We would not hesitate to return here as an absolute preference over any hotel in Hobart and not hesitate to recommend this property to anyone else.

    What James loved about your listing: 
    Loved every bit of the property, the decor was beautiful and felt very homely. You have obviously spent a great deal of time thinking through every thing that makes a stay comfortable and relaxing and we really appreciated that. Thanks for making us feel so welcome and we hope to visit again.

    What James thought you could improve about the experience: 
    Nothing that we can think of...you had so much more than we expected...even sunscreen :)

    January 2016

  • Jonathan Jones

    Rebecca was very welcoming. She showed us the flat and told us the history. There was information in a folder about the area. Milk and fresh orange juice in the fridge.The flat was amazing , large and finished to a high standard. Perfect location, can't recommend highly enough.

    January 2016

  • Marty Denham

    Excellent, luxurious, modern, great atmosphere and well designed. Bec is very nice and allowed us to check in early which was handy having arrived straight from the airport (subject to availability obviously). Would definately stay again.

    January 2016

  • Lauren Hegarty

    The cottage has been designed and appointment in an extremely stylish yet comfortable way. It was like staying in a five star hotel. Bec was a very gracious and kind host and especially child friendly. The master bed was so comfortable and the whole cottage was very cosy. The location was very convenient for the Salamanca Square and other attractions in the Hobart area.

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    January 2016

  • Nick Kenny

    Rebecca was helpful and accommodating allowing us to drop our bags off early and check out late. The room was comfortable and clean. The attached balcony provided district views and was a nice place to unwind. The location was good. About ten to fifteen minute stroll to the harbour. I would recommend staying here.

    January 2016

  • Fiona Cameron

    We absolutely loved our stay in the Housekeeper's cottage. The accommodation was very well equipped. Rebecca was a delightful host and very attentive to our requests. 100 recommended to all airbnb travellers.

     What Fiona loved about your listing: 
    Gorgeous, comfortable apartment. Rebecca you are an exceptional host.

     January 2016

  • Adam Pustola

    The former school house property is set in a leafy suburb, very close to the centre of Hobart. Rebecca welcomed us on arrival. The accommodation is a very elegant and contemporary addition to the historic property. As a group of three, we had plenty of space and comfort. We would highly recommend staying there.

    January 2016

  • Hamish Murphy

    5 star accommodation. Beautifully appointed. Top quality beds. Great location. Rebecca a perfect host

    January 2016

  • Mitch Gross

    Terrific stay! Beautiful accommodations and central location. The hosts were great to deal with. Highly recommend, and would stay again without hesitation.

    January 2016

  • James Fitzgerald

    We had a fantastic time as Rebecca's guests. When we arrived, Rebecca was extremely helpful in telling us of nearby amenity, cafes, bars, transport and everything else that we would need. In addition, the accommodation was a really practical converted ship container with sonos sound system, fridge, and area for small meal preparation. The space was very cool and design both innovative and great to experience and see first hand. We would definitely stay there again. Thank you once again Rebecca.

    January 2016

  • Dawn Hopson

    Very welcoming hosts. Great location - walking distance to town. Was a great place to stay for 3 adults for a short stay.

    January 2016

  • Marlene Scicluna

    We absolutely loved our stay at the Old Bishop's Quarters! Such an interesting history, luxurious apartment and the best location!! Rebecca was very accommodating with us leaving our luggage before check in, which allowed us to make the most of our day. There is off street parking for guests, complimentary tea/coffee/milk/juice and water. A bath to die for and comfortable beds. We recommend the Old Bishop's Quarters to anyone visiting Hobart!

    January 2016

  • Stephanie Milione

    We really enjoyed our stay at Rebecca's self contained apartment. Beautifully designed interior, very clean and conveniently located!

     What Stephanie loved about your listing: 
    The design of the apartment.

    January 2016

  • Mitch Anderson

    Great location, beautifully appointed pad. Loved the seclusion and privacy of this get away. The proximity to Salamanca and Sandy Bay is excellent. Excellent hosts.

     What Mitch loved about your listing: 
    Great, secluded. Loved the soaps. The tandem was fun!! Had a great time, thanks for having us.

    January 2016

  • Jack McCambridge

    Rebecca is a lovely host. Our "New Year's in Hobart" crew had a fairly complicated situation with multiple groups of friends traveling there for a wedding. Rebecca handled our requests generously & thoughtfully. And, more importantly the school house is terrific. Modern, well-appointed, and very welcoming. We had four friends staying there - a couple & two friends. Probably best suited for a family, a couple, or a couple & one friend. But, still lovely for our crew. If you're looking to have a great, Hobart experience with lovely hosts welcoming you, you can't go wrong staying with Rebecca.

    January 2016

  • Tanya Petrovich

    Fantastic location, beautiful residence our family really enjoyed staying here. We walked to the Market and Restaurants and enjoyed eating breakfast whilst looking at the wonderful views. Highly recommend this apartment and the hospitality provided by Rebecca and her family.

    January 2016

  • Greg Peronchik

    Rebecca made us feel at home in tasteful and spotless accommodation. Our apartment reflected a thoughtful attention to detail with nothing left wanting at a convenient location. Rebecca is a lovely hostess. Respectful of privacy and easy to talk to. Certainly enhanced our Hobart experience. We can only recommend!

    January 2016

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Very welcoming

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Very welcoming

Rebecca was very welcoming. She showed us the flat and told us the history. There was information in a folder about the area. Milk and fresh orange juice in the fridge.The flat was amazing , large and finished to a high standard. Perfect location, can't recommend highly enough.

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An absolute delight

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An absolute delight

Well our first Airbnb experience was an absolute delight. Both the property and Bec & Dermot our hosts were outstanding. The apartment we had within the Housekeepers Quarters was appointed easily to the equivalent of a 5 star hotel. The quality of the styling, fittings and furnishing was first rate, with little touches such as top notch toiletries, a great Sonus sound system, iPad and fresh milk and orange juice in the fridge on arrival. Comfy beds, soft towels, impeccably clean bathrooms and a great big bath were sumptuous highlights. For a self stated novice when they started with Airbnb, Bec has created a luxurious and comfortable property. The grounds are beautiful, the view is stunning and all the small details have been attended to such as private secure access and a comprehensive guide to eating and touring in the area. We felt instantly welcomed and at ease like as if we were friends dropping in to stay. We would not hesitate to return here as an absolute preference over any hotel in Hobart and not hesitate to recommend this property to anyone else.

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A fabulous experience!

This was a fabulous experience! The room and ensuite were even better than the images suggested. We loved the fact we could sleep without a roof overhead during our stay. The neighbourhood is beautiful - lovely old homes and friendly people. We were able to walk everywhere - the hills kept us fit :-) We didnt see our hosts but they were contactable by text and provided us with extra towels as soon as we asked for them (we were there for four nights). We have no hesitation in recommending this accommodation - hope you enjoy it as much as we did.

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Like staying in a five star hotel

The cottage has been designed and appointment in an extremely stylish yet comfortable way. It was like staying in a five star hotel. Bec was a very gracious and kind host and especially child friendly. The master bed was so comfortable and the whole cottage was very cosy. The location was very convenient for the Salamanca Square and other attractions in the Hobart area.

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Very elegant and contemporary

The former school house property is set in a leafy suburb, very close to the centre of Hobart. Rebecca welcomed us on arrival. The accommodation is a very elegant and contemporary addition to the historic property. As a group of three, we had plenty of space and comfort. We would highly recommend staying there.

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A delightful stay in Monty's Hideaway

“We had a delightful stay in Monty's Hideaway. A beautifully designed and kept little retreat that made for a very memorable experience. It was also interesting being on the grounds of the larger property of the old Bishops Court. Would highly recommend to anyone.” 

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Recent feedback from our guests

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Recent feedback from our guests

  • Felicity

    Rebecca was extremely welcoming and as it was the festive season and we were not with our own families, she surprised us with champagne, chocolates, and a Christmas tree! We loved staying in the Tutor's Cottage. It was fabulously comfortable, private, stylish, discreet and impeccably clean, and Rebecca had thought of every detail that we might need. She gave us information for shopping and exploring Hobart. It was lovely to be in view of the beautiful Bishop's House also. We had a great break despite stressing about the fires in Wye River near our homes in Victoria on Christmas Day. Thank you Rebecca and Dermott, we hope to come back again. Felicity and Marc

  •  What Felicity loved about your listing: 
    It was perfect for us. A roomy architect designed apartment with great flair and extremely comfortable and well thought out. It is close to everything in Hobart - the city centre, the harbour, historic sites etc, but far enough removed to be quiet and private. Absolutely fabulous.

    December 2015

  • Ellie Willoughby

    Couldn't be better! This is akin to a 6 star hotel with beautiful renovations of a character and history filled original building. I couldn't rate it highly enough

    December 2015

  • Alexandria Guttman

    Great place - very unique and well-maintained. Has everything you could possibly need for your stay and the hosts are very accommodating. No complaints here - highly recommend!

    December 2015

  • Keat Lai

    It's obvious that a lot of thought, effort and heart has been put into restoring the property. The unit is tastefully furnished and has all the required mod-cons of a modern apartment. Wonderful bookshelf with a great selection of local books (the book on Tasmanian produce is delightfully enlightening!). Rebecca was also a good host with good tips on local stores and restaurants. Thank you for hosting us!

    December 2015

  • Ananda Rubens

    Loved everything about Rebecca's historic school apartment. Great design, quality materials and interiors and all details well considered. Position is ideal for exploring the beautiful areas of Hobart, Sandy Bay, Battery Point and Salamanca. Rebecca was a gracious and considerate host. Many thanks for lovely stay x

    December 2015

  • Hilde Goodchild

    We thoroughly enjoyed our stay in the Old Housekeeper's Apartment. Very comfortable and very well presented. Everything we needed for a short stay in Hobart. We arrived earlier than planned and Rebecca's recommendation to lunch at the Cascades brewery was spot on. After a relaxing lunch we returned to find the apartment spotlessly clean and ready for us. We appreciated the orange juice and plunger coffee provided. Happy to recommend to our friends and would stay here again when visiting Hobart.

     What Hilde loved about your listing: 
    For four adults the apartment provided space and privacy with two bathrooms. Walking distance to Hobart dock. Rebecca is very friendly and welcoming.

    December 2015

  • Anthony Brooks

    Rebecca was AMAZING. She welcomed us and made us feel at home in the beautiful Tutor’s Apartment. I could not recommend this location and accommodation highly enough. We will be back when we are next in Hobart.

     What Anthony loved about your listing: 
    Everything!

    December 2015

  • Domi Liard

    Everything was perfect! The flat is absolutely beautiful and super clean. The location is perfect and in easy walking distance to the harbor, the city, shoppes and restaurants. Absolutely recommended!

     What Domi loved about your listing: 
    We absolutely loved the keyless entry, the open shower and the bedding was very comfortable. The location was perfect too.

    December 2015

  • Yue Yiao Lim

    The apartments was beautiful and had everything we needed. Location was good, walking distance to town, and there was a fantastic Italian restaurant just a few streets down. We really enjoyed the bathtub and the beds were very comfortable. Nicole and her family were very friendly and always available to help.

     Private Feedback: 
    Spacious apartments and comfortable beds. Loved staying in a heritage building.

    December 2015

  • Philippe Le Fevre

    A wonderful place to stay. The old school house haas been very stylishly designed. The aesthetic is clean modern with a few notable references to the property's historic origins. The result is excellent. The place is beautiful, practical and, unusually for such modern design, cosy, The interior is even more attractive in real life than in the pictures. The bathroom / shower room is one of the most beautiful I have seen. Love the bathtub. Rebecca and her family went out of their way to make our stay comfortable. They were great hosts, available but completely out of the way. We look forward to returning one day to enjoy one of the rooms with a view.

    December 2015

  • Cassidy Boyd

    We had a lovely stay at the Tutors apartment. Everything was thought of and provided and we felt very welcome. The apartment had a fabulous modern design and a lovely view of the water. Just a short walk to Salamanca, too!

    November 2015

  • Mieke Du Plessis

    We had a wonderful time at the apartment! Rebecca was very welcoming and helpful when we arrived. The apartment is perfect with amazing attention to detail. The neighbourhood is quite peaceful and it's about 15 minutes walk down to Battery Point. I would definitely recommend this lovely place to anyone looking for a home base from which to explore Hobart and surrounds!

     What Mieke loved about your listing: 
    Such a lovely place and a wonderful stay! The apartment was perfectly kitted out. We spent much more time hanging around at the apartment than we expected we would.. haha. I was sceptical about the egg chair - until I sat in it.

    November 2015

  • Kim Harris

    Bec was a fabulous host, really welcoming and easy to contact if needed. The apartment is great, well thought out with lots of nice touches including recommendations on where to eat and things to do. The view over the bay from the kitchen is lovely to. Would certainly recommend and would love to stay again next time we are looking for a relaxing break in Hobart.

    November 2015

  • Heather Paterson

    Rebecca went above and beyond to ensure we had a great stay, and helped make our visit to Hobart fantastic. The accommodation was spotless, spacious enough for 4 adults comfortably. Bedding was hotel quality and the bathroom was stunning with very good quality finishes! All the little extras were great (milk in fridge, shampoo, bathrobes) as well as some advise on restaurants and things to do. I would certainly recommend and hope to visit again myself soon!

    November 2015

  • Ollie De Vries

    Tutors Apartment in Sandy Bay is just incredible! The 2 bedroom apartment is absolutely top of the line in terms of modern amenities. With a great kitchen, living area, balcony, 2 bedrooms Combined with the absolutely perfect location, it's an easy wall top all the top spots from Battery Point, Salamanca and Sandy Bay. Your host Rebecca, is also just fantastic! Can't wait to return!

    November 2015

  • Keira Ralston

    We had such a comfortable stay in Rebecca's beautifully renovated historical building. All the trimmings to add a touch of luxury to our stay in Hobart. Rebecca was so helpful and welcoming... would highly recommend and will definitley stay here again!

    November 2015

  • Tim Amos

    Bec was a fantastic host. Accommodating and lovely. Gave us a great rundown of local spots. The place was perfect. Within walking distance of Salamanca and Constitution Dock. Thanks Bec we'll be back!

    November 2015

  • Allison Lazarus

    This place is beautiful. Half of it is the old schoolhouse, and the other half is a recent addition with heated floors and a fantastic bathroom. The bed is large and comfy, and the whole place feels homely. You're a bit outside the city, but can walk downtown in about 15-20 minutes. There is also a grocery and liquor store nearby if you want to stay in (however the kitchen is small and basic). Would definitely recommend staying here.

     November 2015

  • Georgina Walker

    Rebecca was the perfect host - friendly, professional and attentive. She responded to all my correspondence in a prompt and efficient manner. Rebecca warmly welcomed us to the Old School House on arrival and made us feel immediately at home. Whilst the information and images provided on the Airbnb site was accurate and informative, The Old School House far exceeded our very high expectations. It was immaculate in every sense - cleanliness, quality bed linen, towels, soaps and furnishings. Located in the quiet and lovely residential pocket of Sandy Bay we were able to walk to Franklin restaurant for dinner (20 minutes) and to Pigeon Hole for a coffee/breakfast (5-10 minutes). Access to parking on site was also a bonus. It was immediately apparent upon entering the Old School House that much effort has been made in remodelling the original building, the various spaces and the interior design of it. The lounge area was cosy and provided a lovely space to sit, read and relax. The opportunity to stream music through the iPad, that was provided, was a real joy as we often prefer to listen to music rather than watch the TV. Access to music and good quality sound is seldom a priority for most hosts and we were really delighted to see that Rebecca took much care in providing this option for her guests. The bed was most comfortable as were the pillows. The two areas are separated by way of a partition cabinet without restricting the living room or bedroom areas. The kitchen was spacious and well appointed as was the bathroom. The enormous bath tub was a true indulgence. Glazed sections in the kitchen/meals area, skylights and windows and a small outdoor space provided access to lots of natural light. Our stay at the Old School House was certainly special - making it very difficult to leave and for other properties to compete with. The extremely high standard, overall, and attention to detail, cannot be ignored nor can Rebecca's desire to ensure her guests have a memorable stay. This has been one of our best Airbnb experiences to date (6 stars) - thank you Rebecca - we look forward to returning to the Old School House in the very near future.

     What Georgina loved about your listing: 
    Thank you for a most wonderful stay Rebecca - we have been truly spoilt from this moment on. The very high level of detail, cleanliness and the warm and welcoming feel one gets from staying at the Old School House was really appreciated. We look forward to returning - albeit for a longer stay next time. Thank you again for your flexibility and allowing us to stay the single night.

    November 2015

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December 1889: Bishopscourt rebuilt

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December 1889: Bishopscourt rebuilt

THE MERCURY, TUESDAY 17 DECEMBER 1889

BISHOPSCOURT

Almost every session of Synod for years past the question of providing a suitable residence for the Bishop of the Diocese has been discussed, but it was not until after the departure of Bishop Sandford that anything was decided upon. It was then that Mr. George Fagg, M.S.A., was instructed to prepare plans and specifications for additions and alterations to the old house, and when this was done tenders were called for and a contract entered into with Mr. D. Williams, jun, for work to cost £ 1500.

Since the contract was completed, as per plan, the contractor who, it must be said, has carried out the whole of his undertakings in tho best possible manner, was entrusted with many "extras" and in doing these he has earned the good opinion, not only of the architect and trustees, but of Bishop Montgomery himself. The Bishop, we behove, was himself much pleased with the residence, and whilst there cannot be any wonder at this, in so far as the new portion is concerned, he must have made up his mind to be pleased with the old part in any case, inasmuch as it resembles nothing so much as a rabbit warren.

The old house must have been designed for Aztecs, as the doors to the various rooms are not much over 5ft. in height. However, there is nothing to complain about upon this head in the new portion, as the openings are about 7ft. clear, and as His Lordship is a rather tall man he will perhaps find it advisable not to visit the old buildings.

Domestic Gothic is the style of architecture adopted for the additions, but it is not very pleasing in effect, and there will not be much regret if it is not followed in connection with other buildings in the city. A porch composed of wood upon a stone base with tiled pavement leads to the front door, a handsome piece of work with raised panelling, rich moulding and chamfers. A fan light and side lights of stained glass make the large hall look on bright and cheerful and off to the right of the hall is the drawing-room, a commodious and handsome apartmcnt 25ft. long, 18ft. wide, and 13ft 6m. high. The room has two bays, one square and the other semi-circular. The windows in the latter can be thrown up into the wall overhead, thus permitting egress to the broad verandah and terrace lawn. A handsome coruloe runs round the room, hut it lacks the finish that a centrepiece would give to it. The fireplace has a chaste tiled hearth and back, and a dog grate is provided for fires.

The dining room is a large one, 30 x 18, and 13ft. 6in. high. A neat cornice and frieze is on the upper part of the walls, and dado space at the foot. There is only one fireplace in this large room and that is situated at one end of it. A second door to the room leads into the hall, where it forms a side of a square, and from it there is a narrow passage to the kitchen, pantries, etc., and in another direction tho hall provides access to the verandah and lawn. The staircase is in two flights, and the balustrading is of elegantly carved and turned blackwood.

The upper landing is spacious, and indeed it seems a pity that so much space should be thrown away. Three bedrooms, a bathroom, and lavatory are situated in the new building, and open off this landing, the best room of the lot being over the drawing-room, and having a balcony over the top of the bay window alluded to in connection with that room. From this balcony there is a most charming extensive view, and it can be easily taken advantage of. A passage leading off this landing serves for all the rooms in the old building. Altogether there are 18 rooms in the house, besides two or three bathrooms, a similar number of lavatories, and linen presses, pantries, etc., are plentiful and conveniently situated. The whole of the old building has been renovated; some of the doors stopped up, and slight alterations made. The roof over the drawing-room and best bedroom is carried up in the form of a tower, and surmounted by an iron cresting. Two of the gables are half-timbered, with a cove underneath to bring them out, and the large boards are very ornamental. A herring-bone band runs around the new building, and relieves the character of the brick work very materially. The grounds have been nicely laid out by a well-known gardener named Pearson, and apart from the objections to the old place the residence should be very comfortable and homelike.

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April 1888: worrying about Bishopscourt which was badly in need of repairs

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April 1888: worrying about Bishopscourt which was badly in need of repairs

Mr. Lovett moved "That the trustees of Church property be authorised to expend from the income of tho Episcopal Estate a sum sufficient to effect the necessary repairs to Bishopscourt." He explained that the repairs were exceedingly necessary, and this was the only way, in his opinion, to do so.

The Bishop desired to be assured how far the legal aspect of the question had been considered, and regretted the absence of legal members.

Mr. Lovettt said he was afraid the trustees had not considered the legal aspect of the question, but he presumed it was in the power of the Synod to authorise the expenditure, as there was a precedent for it.

Archdeacon Hales thought the matter was entirely in the Bishop's hands, and if he gave his consent that would dispose of the legal difficulty.

The Rev. J. M. Norman considered that the property at Bishopsbourne was held under a separate and distinct trust from the property at Bishopscourt.

Mr. Lovett said the trustees were prepared to take the responsibility.

Mr. B. T. Solly moved as an amendment, "That the question of the legality of such appropriation be referred by the trustees to the law advisors."

Alter some further discussion, Mr. Lovett intimated that it was only contemplated to spend £100, upon which the Bishop said that altered the whole question, though he did not think that sum anything like sufficient to effect the repairs that were necessary. Tho Chancellor and Mr. Lucas submitted that there was not sufficient information before Synod at to what was intended to enable a consideration of the question.

Mr. Bradon and Mr. Lovett suggested that the amendment should be added to the motion as a rider, and Mr. Solly consented to this being assured that the trustees would take the advice of a professional architect before expending any sum in repairs. Mr. F. H. Wish complained that in dealing with money matters the members of Synod were placed in a very disadvantageous position on aocount of the slipshod manner in which they were brought forward. He had par-ticularly experienced this on the preceding day with reference to Mr. Cox's gift, and now the estimate of the amount required to give effect to the present motion varied from £100 to £1,500.

Mr. Barnard then moved a second amendment, referring tho question to a Select Committee, consisting of Archdeacon Hales, Messrs. Beadon, Lovett, Sharland, and the mover, to report upon what course it was desirable to adopt with regard to Bishopscourt. This suggestion met with the approval of Archdeacon Davenport, who seconded it, and of Mr. W. C. Sharland, wno pointed out that after proper consideration it might be found desirable to sell the property and purchase or build another episcopal residence. Canon Archer also supported Mr. Barnard's amendment, as it opened up a larger question, and he had doubted the propriety of re tabling the name of Bishopscourt for such a place as they had unfortunately purchased.

Mr. Lovett then agreed to amend his motion to provide that the expenditure should not exceed £150, and that legal and professional advice should first be obtained. He pointed out that the trustees were empowered to sell the property, but the present was not a desirable time to sell the ground, which was valuable and likely to become more so. A proposal to sell the lower por-tion of the ground had been considered, but the difficulty was that the position of the house prevented getting any approach. He defended the trustees from the reproaches of those who considered them culpable for tlie present condition of Bishopscourt, by pointing out that they had no funds to effect repairs. But the temporary repairs now proposed were absolutely necessary, and he hoped they would be consented to without referring tho question to a Select Committee. After still further discussion Mr. Lovett's motion, with the amendment assented to by him, was carried, and the Bishop intimated that he would not signify his consent, but reserve the question for further consideration.

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