Burials at St. John’s – The Balfour Vault

Although it is fairly plain to see that no burials have taken place in the grounds of St John’s Church, one person was buried there in 1825. The lady was Mrs Charlotte Balfour, wife of the Civil Commandant at the time, Colonel William Balfour. Charlotte’s grave was outside the East End wall of the church but over the years her resting place has been built over and she now lies under the floor in the middle of the central aisle. The ashes of a few parishioners have been interred in the walls and Garden of Remembrance in recent  years but there have been no burials since Charlotte Balfour in spite of the fact that Burial Registers state ‘Buried at St John’s Church’.

After the formation of All Saints Anglican Network in 2019, and with the sale of St. David’s Church, Riverside, the columbarium at St. David’s had to be vacated, and parishioners were given the opportunity to have the ashes of their loved ones reinterred in a new columbarium at St. John’s, north of the memorial garden on the Elizabeth St. side of the church building. This columbarium has further capacity, so the interring of ashes at St. John’s will continue into the future.

Examiner photo

1937 Balfour vault unearthed
1938 Examiner photo of unearthing of old vault at St John’s. Caption: “Vault uncovered after lapse of 113 years.
…shows the arched roof of the vault referred to in the article on page 6″ – Burrows