History of Salvation Army in Ryde

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The Salvation Army officially “opened fire” in Ryde in 1887, under the leadership of Captain William Butler. But there are reports of Army ministry in Ryde for a few years before that.

A report in The Cumberland Mercury on 21 November, 1885 states: Thus the Ryde correspondent of a Sydney journal on the Salvation Army: No less than four aldermen have joined and about 30 of the principal settlers and storekeepers, besides about 150 of the lower order. (We wonder what he meant by “lower order”!)

Despite the promising start, for some reason the ministry didn’t last, with the corps (Salvation Army church) closing in 1905, only to re-open again in 1915. The second attempt to establish the Army in Ryde was a mere blip on the timeline, with closure 12 months later.

Six years later, on 12 January 1922, the Ryde Salvation Army opened for the third time, under the leadership of Captain Doris Nye and this time it was here to stay. At one stage there were two Salvation Army centres in Ryde – one in Ryde and one in North Ryde (Barr Street Hall, pictured above).

But today, The Salvation Army in the city has consolidated into one ministry, with Sunday Services held in Macquarie Park.