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Walk up the hill towards the Anglican Church.

You may choose to have a coffee at the New Brighton Restaurant or book for dinner here, but as you do reflect on this photo of the original Brighton Hotel.

Made of timber it eventually had to be knocked down. they didn't want another 1899 fire.


Walk up to and around Christ Church

At the back of the Christ Church, you will find the gravesite of a First Fleeter.

John Gowen

John Gowen was born in 1763 and arrived in the H.M.5 Sirius of the First Fleet as a Corporal of Marines. He was one of the first settlers in Norfolk lsland, obtaining a grant of 60 acres in 1793.

In 1801 he was a storekeeper in Sydney and later was appointed Superintendent of Government Stores at Parramatta. At the census of 1828 he was recorded at the age of 65 as living at Liverpool with his son.

He had served with the Marines from 1778 and gained an honourable discharge in November, 1791. He joined the NSW Corps (or 102th Regiment) as a non- commissioned sergeant and served five years. He resigned in 1799 and became the Government Storekeeper on the 1st January. 1800. During 1804-5 he was recorded as one of three sergeants who served in the "Sydney and Parramatta Loyal Associate Corps "which helped put down Castle Hill convict rising in 1804.


He maried Ordery Appleyard (or Audrey Appleford) at St Phillips Church,Sydney on 1 st June, 1805. Ordery had arrived as a convict on the "Earl of Cornwallis" on the 1Oth June 1801. They had five children. His house in Liverpool was on the corner of Elizabeth and George Streets

On 27th November 1821 he married his second wife Mary Wood at St Luke's, Liverpool. Mary came out as a convict on the "Williain Pitt' on 11 th April, 1806.

John Gowen died at Kiama in his 74th year on the 28th April 1837. A plaque is on his tombstone in the small cemetery next to the church.


The first Anglican church as drawn by Abraham Lincolne.

Church Dates


1848.  The first church was built on the south eastern corner of Bong Bong and Manning Streets.

1856. Arrangements were made for a more permanent church and the Church Point site secured.

1859.  Christ Church was opened and consecrated on 13 January by Bishop of Sydney,Bishop Barker.

1869.  Cedar gallery for the choir was added to accommodate an expanding population.

1872.  The arched cedar ceiling was built and resembled the inverted hull of a boat.

1875.  The Chapman family placed the east end memorial windows. They are supposed to

be similar to St.Neots' in Cornwell, England.

1914. New pipe organ built by E. Ladigast and installed.

1922.  Erection of the Soldiers Memorial Tower

with its northern facing entrance porch. Foundation s 'tone was laid on 26 August.

1949.  The Memorial Gates and fence was built with its commemorative plaques.

1.959. The organ was moved from the front of the church and rebuilt in the gallery on the

western wall. This was a bequest of Emily Buchanan, daughter of Henry Connell.

1965.The electric carillon in the tower was a gift from Sarah Batty.



Christ Church and its grounds occupies an important site on Kiama's foreshore and is a strong element in that area of the town. In particular the Church itself is one of the important landmarks of Kiama.

Visitors to the Church are impressed by the arched cedar ceiling and fascinated by the tombstone of the First Fleeter, John Gowen in the tiny cemetery to the south of the Church.

Before heading back to the Pilot's Cottage you will pass the most beautiful of bays.

Storm Bay is a favourite of artists.

It was across here that the Rocket Brigade under instruction from the pilot would practice a unique way of saving the lives of people who were on sinking ships near the coast.

In the background you can see Christ Church.

And now, if you haven't been to the Pilot's Cottage and it is Friday to Monday between 11AM and 3PM why not drop in.

The Kiama & District Historical Society hope you have enjoyed your walk, and if you are a visitor to this town, please come back.

If you haven't had a coffee yet or are in need of more substantial refreshments, drop into the Blowhole Cafe and reflect on your historical walk.

In the Visitors' Centre you can find information about other places to see in and around Kiama.

To Walk Index