FORMER SYNAGOGUE

Location

74-78 MCKILLOP STREET GEELONG, GREATER GEELONG CITY

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Victorian Heritage Register (VHR) Number

H1103

Heritage Overlay Number

HO240

Level of Significance

Registered

79964

Extent of Registration

AMENDMENT OF REGISTER OF HISTORIC BUILDINGS
Historic Building No. 1103:
Former Synagogue, 74 McKillop Street, Geelong, City of Greater Geelong.
Extent:
1. All of the building known as the former Synagogue marked B-1 on Plan 603716 endorsed by the Chairperson, Historic Buildings Council and held by the Director, Historic Buildings Council.
2. All of the land described in Certificate of Title Volume 9371 Folio 319 marked L-1 on Plan 603716, endorsed by the Chairperson, Historic Buildings Council and held by the Director, Historic Buildings Council.
[Victoria Government Gazette No. G36 14 September 1995 pp.2535-2536]

Statement of Significance

The former Synagogue at Geelong was built in 1861 by builders Jones and Halpin to a design by Geelong architect John Young. The stucco rendered brick structure in classical revival style replaced an earlier structure constructed in 1854.

The building is now used as an office.

The former Synagogue is architecturally, historically and socially significant to the state of Victoria.

The building is an unusually elaborate early synagogue and as one of only two known synagogues remaining in regional Victoria, it is a rare example of a building type. It is also an extraordinary example of an architectural design in the Italianate style and is an important example of the eclectic and diverse work of architect John Young. It displays decorative treatment unusual in buildings of this time, especially the detailing of the side bays, the corner piers and the broken pediment with its heavy brackets above the semi-circular gable light, the distinctive detailing of the stucco porch and the unusual form and glazing pattern of the arched side windows.

The former Synagogue is important for its religious and social associations with the Jewish community in Geelong who, although a small group in the community, made a disproportionate contribution to public life. It has associations with various prominent figures who played important roles in the Geelong area and in Victoria as a whole, including Jonas Felix Australia Levien, agriculturist, politician and, according to tradition, the first Jewish child born in Victoria; Benjamin Jonas Fink, politician and land boom speculator; and Zilla Crawcour, the first woman to hold mayoral office in Australia.

Year Construction Started 1861
Architectural Style Victorian Period (1851-1901) Mannerist
Heritage Act Categories Registered place
Municipality GREATER GEELONG CITY

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