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WARD'S HILL SUNDAY SCHOOL ANNIVERSARY.

The anniversary of the Ward's Hill Sunday school was celebrated on Sunday, August 22. The Rev. E Smith, of Bute, officiated, and the services were greatly appreciated by all. On Wednesday, August 25, the usual tea and public meeting was held, and was well attended notwithstanding the measles epidemic prevalent in the districts The superintendent, Mr D. Adams, presided at the evening's meeting, and stated that during the year the personnel of the school had been considerably changed. Mr Adams and Mr Carman had changed positions as superintendent and vice superintendent: Mr Goodridge, who had held office for 23 years as secretary and treasurer, had left the district, and had been succeeded by Mr A. F. Young. The report was very favorable. There were 50 scholars on the roll, with an average of 30.4; teachers and officers 7, average 5 24. The school had recruited for both God and Empire, and was in the happy position of having almost all the senior scholars as church members. The scholars were congratulated for the voluntary gift of the value of their prizes to the Red Cross Fond. The Rev. Smith was again present, and gave a delightful address. The circuit minister, Rev. Eckereley, and Mr Speckman, of Alford, also gave pleasing addresses. Mr Arnold Smith rendered two excellent patriotic songs, which brought forth muoh applause. Recitatitions were also given by the scholars. The school is to be congratulated on its excellent singing under the leadership of Mr Adams. Mrs Nelson presided ably at the organ. The proceeds amounted to £10 10s, which will be forwarded to the British Red Cross Fund.


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NEW METHODIST CHUECH AT WARD'S HILL.

The picture represents the ontraetor (Mr. Brerton) handing the key over to Sir Goodridge (secretary of the Building Committee).


RECHABITISM. VISIT TO WARD'S HILL.

For many years the Rechabites at "Wallaroo have conducted a Temperance Campaign in the rural districts adjoining the town, and the branches at Alford, Tickera, and more recently Ward's have also done much in the temperance cause. Old members of the Order can relate many reminiscences of the events connected with the visits to these outlying parts, when the journey had td be undertaken in all kinds of weather, and when motor cars were unheard of, and the midnight hour had struck before the return journey was completed. On Saturday, November 30, a party journeyed to Ward's Hill, a snug little hamlet about 25 miles from the seaport town. The branch was testablished about nine years ago, and on that occasion the journey "occupied- several hours. Heavy sand hills are encountered on the last portion of the journey, and "shanks' pony" has to be resorted to. Even the motor fails to negotiate some of these heavy sand hills, and on the last trip all hands except the chauffeur had to alight and lend a hand in pushing the car through the sand, which in places is nearly three feet deep. The party was met aboutjtwo miles from Ward's Hill by a number of boys on horseback, and they joined in the struggle. On arrival at the little church, which is situated right on top of the hill, the boys and girls of the countrysid'e had assembled to hold their lodge meeting. Amongst the number were five sisters, (out of a family of xo, ranging from 2 to 15 years, all girls), and healthy, bright girls they were, typical of the rural life. The father later joined in the meeting in his field "tog®," after following the reaper all day.

A bright temperance meeting was held, which was characterised by the earnest and zealous manner of the country boys and girls. The visitors congratulated the Wards Hill children on the great interest they were taking in temperance work. Speaking on the war, one of the visitors referred to the cessation of hostilities, and incidentally mentioned that the.boys would soon return. With much feeling, one of the boys said, "Unfortunately, our boys will not return." It was learned that of the eight boys who enlisted from the little country place, sevsr. lia<l made the supreme sacrifice, and the other was a prisoner in Germany Such a record is surely worthy of a lasting memorial and the little farming hamlet will live in imperishable memory because of this. The National Anthem was then sung with much fervor.

At the conclusion of the meeting, the visitors were entertained at tea, the girl members of the lodge doing their hospitable part as only farm girls can do. Invitations to supper from neighboring farmers had to be declined, as the journey home was causing some concern to the chauffeur. Darkness had set in, and the sand hills were not so easily negotiated at night. However, the boys came to the rescue, and volunteered to form an advance guard, and pioneer the chauffeur oyer a bush track, which would avoid the and hills; The offer was gladly accepted. Headed by the boys mounted on their ponies, the party started on the return journey. After seeing the car safely on the main road, the boys gave a cheer and hearty, good-night, and galloped off homeward. Wallaroo was reached soon after 10 p.m., and more dust had to be encountered this time in the form of a storm which was" raging. After the comforts and discomforts of the trip, the party retired to rest; that night convinced that temperance work in the rural districts was time well spent, and worthy of greater encouragement than it some times receives.


Wards Hill School and Church

Yorke Peninsula Heritage Survey 1997

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Recommendation: Local Heritage Place BW:052

DESCRIPTION

Single roomed church building constructed from random limestone rubble with red brick quoins. Gothic
arc heads have been to door an window opening . Reef is of gable construction clad with corrugate iron with sign plaque to front gable. Foundation stones from the building have been moved to a plaque in front of the building.

STATEMENT OF HERITAGE VALUE

The site of an early church and school in the district, representative of the many such buildings which served as a spiritual educational and social focus for the local community.

RELEVANT CRITERIA

(c) it has played an important part in the lives of local residents.

HISTORY

The Bible Christian Church was established at Wards Hill in a timber and iron building and was believed in 1890 to be the second biggest church in the Port Broughton Circuit, with Brother Kemp as the Minister.

On 8 July 1891 a school was opened in the church building, with 12 students under the charge of Miss Elizabeth Retchford. The opening of a school at Wards Hill was described by the Kadina and Wallaroo Times as being 'a great boon to the district, the nearest public school being about ten miles distant.' Miss Retchford remained at the school until 1894. By the tum of the century, pressure from the local community led to the construction of a more suitable and permanent structure A block of land (Section 187C) to the north of the iron building was donated by Mr Albert Ward and the foundation stone of a new school and church building was laid by G Cooper on 27 March 1904. The building, constructed of stone with red brick quoins, measured 31 x 12 feet and was built by E Brereton of Kadina at a cost of £270. Local residents had raised £172 towards the cost of the building and the purchase of a new organ . The completed church and school was opened on 19 and 26June 1904, respectively.

Schooling continued in the building until May 1949 when there were 11 students on the roll. The building continued to serve as a church until the mid 1950s.

References

Paterson , R. M. & Price, E. L. 1984, From Stumps to Stubble: A History o f the District o f Bute, p. 261 ,316-320

Port Broughton Historical Committee Records
Yorke Peninsula J150 Schools' Heritage Project, 1985, p. 9-10

Weidenhofer Architects, Historical Research Pty Ltd, Austral Archaeology page 60