THE CHURCH HOUSE

Convert a church with a history of nearly a century into a cosy family home. This was the bold vision that Glen and Gabrielle Williams had when they came across this old church in an inner suburb of Brisbane. Over a year on, the heritage-listed building is just that, home to the couple and their children, Sam and Georgia, and their two dogs.

Glen and Gabrielle’s new home was originally an Anglican church built in 1924 on the crest of a small hill in Norman Park in Brisbane's inner-east. For many years, ironically, it was referred to as "the Church of Trans guration".The block occupies 2356-square-metres and had been unoccupied for 10 years before builder and property developer Glen purchased it with an eye to redeveloping the site.

However, within ve minutes of perusing the newly acquired property, Glen and his family decided they wanted to live there. "The view and space here is so attractive to me," said Glen. Soon Glen and wife Gabrielle started to discuss ideas with architect David Hansforth and interior designer Georgia Cannon. "The designer put forward a proposal which is very modern with a masculine range of nishes that really resonated with us," Glen said. The result is a space which is angular, dynamic, and also very modern with a minimalist decorating style, re ecting an industrial design aesthetic.

“We basically built a new house that joins onto the heritage-listed church, with a link between the new and the old.The new house is a very modern design because we didn’t want to compete with the church—the contrast is quite striking,” explains Glen.

The main living section of the home is a two-storey, o - form concrete and glass extension that is linked to the old church by an above ground zinc ‘box’.The church space is used as an entertaining room and Glen has his o ce on the mezzanine oor.

The second oor of the new building houses the master bedroom which utilises lots of glass to take advantage of the expansive views.There are three more bedrooms upstairs and a bathroom which maintains the sleek modern industrial theme with elements like a black marble sink, polished concrete oors and walnut wooden walls matched with white ceramic tiles and bath.

Behind the church sits a tennis court which serves as a play area for a multitude of family activities and an in nity-edge pool that looks across the front of the property, with stunning views over the Brisbane River to the city and mountains beyond. 


Architect DAH Architecture, Interior Designer Georgia Cannon, Photos Cathy Schusler