The Scots' Church is a Presbyterian church in Melbourne, Australia. It was the first Presbyterian church to be built in the Port Phillip District (now the state of Victoria) and is located on Collins Street. It is a congregation of the Presbyterian Church of Australia and has been described as "an icon for well over a hundred years".Put Scots Church at the forefront of your travel plans using our Melbourne tour itinerary tool .
The Reverend James Forbes was recruited to come to Australia as a Presbyterian minister by the Revd John Dunmore Lang, arriving in Melbourne from Sydney via boat on 20 January 1838. He found that a retired Church of Scotland minister, the Revd James Clow, had arrived on 25 December 1837 and had commenced an afternoon service from 2 pm and 4 pm according to Presbyterian forms in a basic building constructed west of William Street and north of Little Collins Street (now the site of the AMP centre). Clow had been a Church of Scotland chaplain in Bombay, India but had retired and was of independent means. He had intended to settle in South Australia but when he stopped en route in Hobart the positive reports about Port Phillip led him to visit the Port Phillip District in October 1837 and then settle permanently.
Forbes continued the Presbyterian services commenced by Clow on 31 December 1837 in the "Pioneers Church" near the north west corner of William Street and Little Collins Street. The Church of England soon made exclusive claims to this communal building and so Forbes held services in Craig and Broadfoot's store in Collins Street until a temporary timber building called "The Scots' Church" was opened on the adjoining land loaned by David Fisher in July 1838. The site was between where the Olderfleet and Rialto buildings were subsequently erected (Lot 14 Section 2). It was essentially a large room with a fireplace.
Scots Church Reviews
This is a rather lovely church, centrally located in the city. The exterior of the church is actually more impressive than its interior, as it has much more character to it. more »
Definitely worth a visit. We preferred this church to its bigger ‘cousins’ St Paul’s and St Patrick’s. Beautiful stained glass, in a lovely shaped space. more »
Beautiful historical church. Lovely stained glass windows
Good for tourists and anyone who has never visited this place.
Plan your trip to Melbourne
Get a personalised planA complete day-by-day itinerary
based on your preferences
Customise itRefine your plan. We'll find the
best routes and schedules
Book itChoose from the best activities
and find special offers
Manage itEverything in one place.
Everyone on the same page.
View all >
View all >
View all >
Hidden gems in Melbourne
Parks in Melbourne
Nearby attractions in Melbourne
Plans to Scots Church by other users
32 days in Australia BY A USER FROM UNITED KINGDOM March, culture, relaxing, beaches, historic sites, popular sights PREFERENCES: March, culture, relaxing, beaches, historic sites ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular sights PACE: Medium 5 days in Melbourne & Birdsville BY A USER FROM AUSTRALIA July, historic sites, wildlife, popular sights PREFERENCES: July, historic sites, wildlife ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular sights PACE: Medium 11 days in Melbourne & Sydney BY A USER FROM INDIA July, teens, popular sights PREFERENCES: July, teens ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular sights PACE: Medium 42 days in Adelaide & Melbourne BY A USER FROM AUSTRALIA December, kids, culture, outdoors, relaxing, historic sites, wildlife, popular & hidden gems PREFERENCES: December, kids, culture, outdoors, relaxing, historic sites, wildlife ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular & hidden gems PACE: Medium 31 days in Australia BY A USER FROM AUSTRALIA August, relaxing, beaches, historic sites, wildlife, popular sights PREFERENCES: August, relaxing, beaches, historic sites, wildlife ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular sights PACE: Medium 60 days in Melbourne BY A USER FROM AUSTRALIA August, culture, beaches, historic sites, museums, popular sights PREFERENCES: August, culture, beaches, historic sites, museums ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular sights PACE: Medium