Visiting Erindale Presbyterian Church, formerly Springfield Methodist Church, Mississauga, Ontario: dating from 1877

Provincial flag of Ontario
Provincial flag of Ontario | Source
Erindale Presbyterian Church, formerly Springfield Methodist Church, Mississauga
Erindale Presbyterian Church, formerly Springfield Methodist Church, Mississauga | Source
Historical plaque, Erindale Presbyterian Church, formerly Springfield Methodist Church, Mississauga
Historical plaque, Erindale Presbyterian Church, formerly Springfield Methodist Church, Mississauga | Source
Erindale Presbyterian Church, formerly Springfield Methodist Church, Mississauga
Erindale Presbyterian Church, formerly Springfield Methodist Church, Mississauga | Source
Erindale Presbyterian Church, formerly Springfield Methodist Church, Mississauga
Erindale Presbyterian Church, formerly Springfield Methodist Church, Mississauga | Source
Map location of Mississauga, Ontario
Map location of Mississauga, Ontario | Source

A hilltop heritage property designated under the Ontario Heritage Act

When this fine structure in what is now Erindale, Mississauga, Ontario, was built in 1877, it was known as Springfield Methodist Church; today it is Erindale Presbyterian Church.

In the mid-19th century, Methodist services were held at the Royal Exchange Hotel.

There was a big problem, however, with this venue in the minds of the Methodist congregation.

Booze.

How could they possibly meet there, notwithstanding the hotelier's willingness for them to use his place of business as a venue, if he dared also to sell the stronger stuff to other patrons at other times?

The landlord and vintner himself, a gentleman called Emerson Taylor, came up with a solution. He would offer to donate land to his Methodist guests unwilling for him to serve his somewhat less religious patrons with alcohol while they, the Methodists, were accepting his hospitality. This munificence the Methodists proved to have no problem with accepting (even though, if the Methodists had professed to be worried by their host's alcohol-serving activities when they met at hotel, these did not seem to translate into further worries about the partly alcoholic sales origin of his wealth).

In any case, Springfield Methodist Church was the result of these deliberations. The structure was the responsibility of Christopher Bamford (1), of Streetsville.

A church hall, added in recent years, has been pleasingly conformed to the built environment in its use of multi-coloured brick and Gothic window arching.

The current building is particularly conspicuous for its spire — especially noticeable, given the its situation at the top of a hill — but its original spire did not survive the 1920s. The building continued spireless until 2010, when a new spire was built.

In 1925 the church building became known as Erindale United Church. This congregation ceased to meet at the venue in 1964, and use of the building subsequently passed to Presbyterians.

What is now Erindale Presbyterian Church is situated at 1560 Dundas Street West, Mississauga. It has been designated as a heritage property under the Ontario Heritage Act and this is indicated by an historical plaque on the building.

November 22, 2012

Note

(1) Bamford-Goheen House, dating from circa 1875, on Queen Street West, Mississauga, was also by Christopher Bamford, who built many local properties.

Also worth seeing

In Erindale, Mississauga itself, the nearby former St Peter's Rectory; St Peter's Anglican church itself, dating from 1825; Glen Erin Hall Gatehouse ruins at Ivor Woodlands; the Sawmill Valley Trail, and many others.

...

How to get there: Air Canada, flies to Toronto Pearson Airport, with wide North American and other connections, from where car rental is available. (Distance from Toronto Pearson Airport to 1556 Dundas Street West, Mississauga : 22.6 kilometres). A GO Train service operative between Toronto Union and Erindale GO Train stations (distance from Erindale GO Train station at 1320 Rathburn Road West and 1560 Dundas Street West: 4.4 kilometres). Local bus routes include 1C, 44, 101 and 110. Please check with the airline, your travel agent, or transportation company for relevant up to date information.

MJFenn is an independent travel writer based in Ontario, Canada.

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