Church Name: St Michael

Waimea was also known as Goldsborough or Old Waimea Various sources differ over who built this church.

The church of St Michael was blessed and opened by Fr Joseph Larkin in June 1867. Prior to the building of the church Fr Larkin had celebrated Mass in a calico structure that also served as the courthouse.

The floor consisted of 12 x 1 clean heart silver pine. The whole dome of the sanctuary was lined with a sky blue material that had white stars dotted all over it.

Fr Belliard, died 1877, was buried under the altar until 1920 when his remains were exhumed and buried in the Greymouth cemetery.. The reason was that the Waimea Creek had built up and was threatening the church and the remains.

Referring to Fr Chareyre J.J. Wilson says “He built a church at Ross, also a fine presbytery, and a beautiful church at Waimea (Goldsborough)”

Other sources say St Michael’s Catholic Church at Waimea was blessed and opened in June 1866 by Bishop Philip Viard SM and his Vicar General Father J.J.P O’Reily while on their first and only visit to the Coast

Were there two churches, or is there confusion over who built it?

In the 1930s the church was sold and dismantled by Martin and John Fahey of Kumara.


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