Share this record

Contact Artefacts
please if you have any comments or more information regarding this record.

Nederduitse Gereformeerde Kerk
Rustenburg, North West

Karl HEYNE: Architect

Date:1903
Type:Nederduitse Gereformeerde Kerk - Church
Style:Neo-Gothic
Status:Extant

 


Click to view large map

Coordinates:
25°40'18.31" S 27°14'43.88" E Alt: 1173m

See more photographs

On July the 23rd 1895 the Executive of the ZAR government had granted the 'NG Kerk' congregation in Rustenburg four stands for the purpose of building a church thereon. Two months later a building committee was appointed. Lack of the necessary funds hindered progress in the matter.

Finally, two-and-a-half years later, on the 8th of January 1898 at a meeting of the congregation it was announced that a church with a seating capacity of one thousand would be built to the value of £11000 [in the end it cost nearly double that amount]. And that the building would have to be finished by December 1899.

Tenders were called for and the contract was awarded to the master builder Karl HEYNE. The contract sum has not been revealed nor is mention made of any architect.

Work started forthwith, so that in April on Saturday the 23rd the cornerstone was laid. Regrettably that sandstone weathered rather rapidly; and when later it was defaced by some hoodlums it was replaced by a new one - also made from sandstone. Later still, in 1935, for unknown reasons, a third foundation stone was installed.

The work on the church progressed very well. It appeared that the deadline for the handing over of the building would easily be met. Plans were already made for the consecration of the church when on October the 11th 1899 war broke out between the ZAR and England [Anglo-Boer War]. Work ceased immediately since virtually all the workman were called up for war service.

In May 1900 - Kimberly and Mafeking had been relieved, the big centres Bloemfontein, Johannesburg and finally Pretoria had been overrun - British forces under General Baden-Powell occupied Rustenburg. They soon seized the new church building and established a military hospital in it.

The accompanying picture of the interior of the church/hospital gives a good impression of how far the building work had already progressed. Even the brass chandeliers had been installed.

The war came to an end in May 1902 and work could resume again on the church. However, to put in the final touches took much more than a year. The workmen had to come back from the war and the prison camps overseas, materials were scarce and the repair of the wear and tear caused by the almost two years of hospital occupation could be given as the cause of the delay. For this, the latter task, HEYNE in the end was to claim an extra £500.

Finally, in September 1903 the church was consecrated.

In the early 1970s the church underwent a major overhaul and subsequently was declared a National Monument.

Sources:
Document written by Heloise Heyne, Heyne's great-granddaughter
Eric Rosenthal
The Rustenburg Herald
Lionel Wulfsohn
Brochure published by the congregation in 1975

(Konrad Voges, July 2016)

__________________________

Transcription of National Monuments Council plaque:

HIERDIE GEMEENTE, WAT IN 1850 GESTIG IS,
HET AL SY EIENDOMME IN 1895 VERLOOR
AS GEVOLG VAN DIE KERKSTIGTING IN 1892
EN DIE DAAROPVOLGENDE HOFUITSPRAAK.
GEVOLGLIK HET KARL HEINE VROEG IN 1898
MET BOUWERK AAN HIERDIE
NEO-GOTIESE KERKGEBOU BEGIN
OP GROND WAT DEUR DIE REGERING VAN DIE ZUID
AFRIKAANSE REPUBLIK GESKENK IS.
TYDENS DIE ANGLO-BOEREOORLOG 1899
(1902) IS DIE PAS VOLTOOIDE KERKGEBOU
DEUR DIE BRITTE AS MILITERE HOSPITAAL GEBRUIK
EN DIT IS EERS IN SEPTEMBER 1903 INGEVY.
DIE INDRUKWEKKENDE INTERIEEUR IS
METTERTYD AANSIENLIK VERANDER,
MAAR IN 1969 IS DIT BESLUIT OM GROOTSKAALSE
RESTOURASIEWERK TE LAAT UITVOER.
DIE GERESTOUREERDE GEBOU IS IN
AUGUSTUS 1975 IN GEBRUIK GENEEM.
RAAD VAN NASIONALE GEDENKWAARDIGHEDE.

Translation:
This congregation, founded in 1850, lost all its property in 1895 due to the establishment of the church in 1892 and subsequent court judgment. Therefore Karl Heine, early in 1898 began building this neo-gothic church on land donated by the government of the South African Republic. During the Anglo Boer War in 1899 (1902) the newly finished church building was used by the British as a military hospital and it was only inaugurated in September 1903. The impressive interior was changed considerably over time, but in 1969 it was decided for major restoration to be carried out. The restored building was occupied in August 1975. National Monuments Council.

(S vd Stel Bul 12 Apr 1966)

All truncated references not fully cited below are those of Joanna Walker's original text and cited in full in the 'Bibliography' entry of the Lexicon.


Writings about this entry

Hoevers, Jan. 2005. Van Kerke en Dorpe. Historiese vertellinge oor die oudste kerke en dorpe in Suid-Afrika. Centurion: Publiself Uitgewers. pg 116
Maeder, GA & Zinn, C. 1917. Ons kerk album van Hollandsche kerken en leeraren. Capetown: Cape Times. pg 201-203
Menache, Philippe & David, Darryl Earl. 2012. A Platteland Pilgrimage : 102 country churches of South Africa . South Africa: Booktown Richmond Press. pg 85