Camperdown Chronicle
Church windows given fresh look

CAMPERDOWN’S Uniting Church will shine a little brighter following the completion of a major project.

The windows of the church building and accompanying hall have been repaired, restoring them to their original condition.

Robert Rusev of Robert Rusev Stained Glass started the project in January last year and completed it Thursday, repairing about 40 windows ranging from 87 to 118 years old.

He said roughly nine weeks of work was completed on-site, while many hours were spent fixing windows at his Melbourne base.

“An inspection took place and a condition report was submitted with the planned intent to conserve the windows,” Mr Rusev said.

“These windows hadn’t been repaired since installation, they are original windows that had not been touched and they were in pretty bad shape.

“Quite a few were excavated to the work bench for repair and consolidation.

“The windows have been brought back to a point in which the vibrancy of colours has been brought back and transparency of glass has been renewed.”

Mr Rusev said most of the work had been done on the inside of the buildings and included thoroughly cleaning the inside and outside of the windows, repairing and rebuilding vents and consolidating saddle bars and tie wires.

He said work also included re-cementing and sealing windows from the weather and rain, with the project expected to give the windows longevity.

“The way we operate is on a cyclic maintenance program over 20 to 30 years,” Mr Rusev said.

“If that is maintained, intervention will be minimised and all we’ll be doing is sealing and weather proofing windows (on a regular basis).”

Uniting Church co-ordinator of building projects Colin Hayman said fundraising for the project started five years ago.

He said the church funded part of the costs, with the rest covered by a grant from the Uniting Church head office along with donations from philanthropic trusts.

Mr Hayman said the church was thrilled with the finished product.

“Before they were obviously very dull and faded and dirt and grime had built up over the years,” he said.

“But now they have been done you can really see the difference in them, it is really noticeable in the ones that don’t have pictures in them.

“The church is very happy with them and the fundraising people are ecstatic.”