The Cathedral

St James Cathedral is widely acknowledged as an important building. It is a major landmark on Melton Hill, being seen from many places around the city. It is entered in the Queensland Heritage Register maintained by the Department of Environment, and it is also listed by the National Trust of Queensland and is entered in the Register of the National Estate maintained by the Australian Heritage Commission.


Obviously, the Cathedral has a strong and special association with the Anglican community in Townsville and maintains its role as the mother church of the Anglican Diocese of North Queensland which stretches from Sarina to the Torres Strait Islands, and from the Pacific Ocean to the Northern Territory border.

It contains the cathedra (seat) of the bishop and is where all important Diocesan occasions take place.


Apart from being used for regular worship, the Cathedral also has a connection with the Townsville community and with the army and the air force that are based in the city.



 Church buildings are silent witnesses to the presence of Christ in a particular place, and they are houses of prayer where the followers of Jesus gather together to worship God and sing His praises. They are also silent witnesses to the Christian tradition, and they take us back to those who have gone before. St James’ Cathedral is no exception and is not only a spiritual home for the Diocese and the Parish, but a house of memories where the visions and dreams of many people through the decades are preserved in art, architecture, wood-carving and music.


Many have left their stamp on the building: bishops, deans, clergy, wardens, canons, choir masters, architects, builders, artists, wood carvers, organ builders, glaziers, and the countless worshippers through the years. They have all brought life and beauty into the building, as future generations will also continue to do. Unlike museums, which are full of lifeless artefacts of the past, our Cathedral is a living, vital place in which the past, present, and future are wonderfully blended into a fitting home for the children of God.