St Luke's is the main church for the Parish of Havelock North. While most of our activity is focused on Havelock North Village, the parish covers a large area, running north to Ocean Beach and Waimarama and south beyond Kairakau and Mangakuri. The satellite church of St Stephen's in Elsthorpe serves the southern part of the parish.
St Luke's in the early 21st Century
The First St Luke's Thomas Tanner was one of the major landholders on the Heretaunga Plains in the late nineteenth century. In 1874 he arranged for the construction of an Anglican church in Havelock North. A local builder - George Bee - was contracted to have the job finished in six months. On September 20th that same year the first Bishop of Waiapu, the Right Rev'd William Williams, consecrated the building and named it St Luke's.
The Second St Luke's Only six years after the completion of St Luke's the Vestry of the day decided to add a chancel and vestry to help cater for increasing attendances. These additions were completed in April, 1881.
The Lady Chapel
The Third St Luke's
As Havelock North grew, so did the congregation at St Luke's and by the early twentieth century more additions were required. In 1906 the southern aisle was added and in 1910 a further aisle was requested by the Headmistress of Woodford House school. The Parish agreed to the request which was accompanied by a guarantee of three shillings per week per girl and a further five pounds a year towards the Vicar's stipend. These latest additions were completed in 1913.
In 1931 a major earthquake rocked Hawke's Bay, killing many and demolishing the diocesan cathedral in Napier. St Luke's escaped largely unscathed apart from significant structural damage to the tower of the church which was consequently demolished.
The Chapel Windows
The School House
In 1882 Thomas Tanner left for England, but not before ordering (at his own expense) the construction of a school house for the parish Sunday School. Nearly forty years later this became the home of St Luke's School,. which continued to offer schooling for primary children through until its closure in 1956.
The old school house, now the Op Shop
The Village Hall
In 1910 the Village Hall was built on part of the St Luke's property. Its construction was part-funded by the local community, but well over half the cost came from St Luke's. Although well used in its early years, by the late 20th century the Hall was under-utilised and in a serious state of disrepair.
A New Era
The demolition of the old hall and extension of St Luke's was first discussed in the 1980s. It was always going to be a controversial move and it wasn't until 1997 that the Village Hall was demolished and the Supper Room (which had been built subsequently) taken to a new site to be used by the local Baptists. The School Room, previously at the rear of the site, was relocated to the front of the section where it now houses the parish Opportunity Shop which is run by St Luke's Mission Guild.
In an arrangement with the diocesan Social Services Trust part of the St Luke's land was used for the construction of villas for older residents and the funds were used to construct new lounge, office, kitchen and toilet facilities for the church.