DETAILED CHRONOLOGICAL HISTORY
1832 30 August: Governor Sir Lowry Cole grants a piece of government land for the building of the Rondebosch Chapel.
 
5 September: Bishop Daniel Wilson of Calcutta consecrates the site; burials probably started; building of the Michell-designed chapel begins, financed by subscription and shares.
Picture of Michell Church
Chapel at Rondebosch - designed by Michell
from the cover of "The Life and Works of Charles Michell" by Gordon Richings
(Fernwood Press: Simon's Town, 2006)
1834 16 February: Sir Benjamin D'Urban officially opens the Rondebosch Chapel, which is administered by Trustees who institute the 'pew rent' system. First Chaplains: Holt Okes (MA Cam) and Edward Judge (MA) share responsibility with Wynberg.
1839 Judge moves to Simon's Town; Holt Okes and John Fry (BA, RN retd) share responsibility with Wynberg.
1843 Free Mission School operating on the Rondebosch Chapel site. John Fry is appointed second chaplain and sole incumbent.
1845 Ordinance N 5 officially names Rondebosch Chapel as St Paul's Church. The Ordinance also relieves the trustees of their responsibilities and establishes an elected 'vestry' led by two church wardens and two auditors. A gallery is added to Michell's building.
1848 Robert Gray arrives as first Bishop of Cape Town. His wife, Sophia (Sophy); designs a new church to replace Michell's chapel.
1850 Building begins to the geographic north of the chapel which remains as chancel, as only the nave is completed.
1854 Bishop Gray acquires glebe land which includes Rondebosch Camp Ground (now Rondebosch Common), Park Estate and more. He presents these to St Paul's. The cemetery is closed to further purchase of plots.
1861 October 25: John Fry dies at sea while on sick leave:
1863 John Thomas (MA) becomes incumbent and takes the title 'rector'. He is appointed Archdeacon of Cape Town.
1864 Camp Ground Mission School Chapel (later St Thomas's) is designed by Sophy Gray and building commences. Black River Mission on Strathallan Road in Park Estate is started.
1865 Camp Ground Mission School Chapel opens: a porch on the east facade of the nave is erected to the memory of John Fry and his wife.
1868 Thomas returns to England.
1869 Hopkins Badnall (DD) assumes duty as rector ofSt Paul's and Archdeacon of Cape Town. St Paul's Choir is initiated. Badnall plays a key role in compiling the constitution for the Church of the Province of South Africa
Picture of Hopkins Badbnall
Archdeacon Hopkins Badnall
from the BADNALL family Web site.
1872 The Church of the Province of Southern Africa is established.
1874 A cemetery is established near the Camp Ground Chapel. It was de-consecrated in 1970 and sold to the Diocesan College.
1875 The single-bell belfry that exists today is erected. some early illustrations show a three bell belfry but these are incorrect.
Lithograph Schaller
Lithograph of Church by A Schaller showing incorrect three bell turret
in possession of the St Paul's Church
1880 Work begins on William White's design to complete the work begun by Sophy Gray; the Michell chapel/chancel is demolished.
1884 White's extensions are completed, comprising two transepts, a choir, sanctuary, Lady Chapel, priest's vestry and organ vestibule. The Willis organ is installed.
1885 Badnall, mastermind behind the handsome building that is now St Paul's, retires to England, Canon George Ogilvie (DLitt) is appointed rector and pays particular attention to the mission schools
1894 St Paul's Rugby Club founded.
1902 Ogilvie retires as rector and his curate, Alfred Rendle accepts, the incumbency. He continues the interest in schools and starts a new mission in Milner (now Athlone).
1903 Camp Ground Mission Chapel is enlarged and dedicated to St Thomas.
1904 St Paul's stages the official opening of the Milner Mission Chapel, Rondebosch Parish gets its first dedicated rectory, designed by Sir Herbert Baker and built at enormous cost (6 800). A new brick chapel is built for the Black River Mission. Ladies (out of sight of the congregation!) augment the boys' choir. The church magazine St Paul's Record is launched, edited and managed by Ossie Hogarth.
Cover of St Paul's Record
Cover of 1907 St Paul's Record showing the different chapels.
St Marks, Milner (L) St James, Black River (R)
St Paul's (Top), St Thomas (Bottom)
1905 Black River Chapel is officially opened as St James' Church. Rendle resigns unexpectedly, Robert Douglas (MA) is instituted as rector on Christmas Eve.
1907 Cape government declares Camp Ground cemetery closed.
1909 A new stained glass window, from the bequest of George Nicholls, is erected above the reredos in the sanctuary and four panels from the former east window are moved to the north wall of the Lady Chapel.
23 May: St Paul's is consecrated by Archbishop William Carter and the administrative 'vestry' is replaced by an elected council. Rondebosch Parish transfers most of the glebe land to the municipality.
1911 Douglas retires, but remains in office until 31 August. John Brooke (MA Oxon) is installed as first South African-born rector. [Later Dean of Cape Town]
1914 St Paul's pre-empts Provincial Synod's enfranchisement of women for parish purposes. Brooke is detailed as chaplain to the S A Expeditionary Force in Walvis Bay (South West Africa) at the start of World War I.
1917 St Paul's grants 99-year lease of property to the City Council for the widening of Main Road.
1917 The parish opens a mission in Rylands Estate.
1921 A memorial is erected to honour those men in the district who fell during World War I

War Memorial
Photo: Chris Rainer-Pope
1923 The first Parish Hall is opened near St Thomas's Church.
1925 Brooke moves to St Aidan's in Yeoville. Canon William Webster (MA Lond) replaces him as rector. Rustenburg Cottage is bought to house a curate. The mission churches in Black River, Athlone and Rylands obtain separate district status within the parish.
1928 The first rectory is sold for half its cost-price.
1930 A second rectory is built near St Thomas's.
1934 Centenary celebrations take place, including erection and dedication of the Lych Gate. A planned choir vestry is not built for lack of funds.
1935 Jodrell Day is appointed curate to serve young congregants, especially UCT students, ( See History of UCT Chaplaincy) St Paul's Boys' Club for 'disadvantaged' youths is initiated by Robin Cullis and others.
1936 The choir vestry is completed and dedicated.
1937 St Paul's Guild of St Mary is founded.
1939 William Gregorowski arrives from England as curate. Final edition of St Paul's Record.
1940 Ethel Jones is elected first lady church councillor.
1941 St Paul's School is modified to meet Cape Education Department requirements.
1945 Athlone District Churches become an independent parish.
1947 The remnant of Rondebosch Parish (ie: St Paul's and St Thomas's) become separate parishes. Webster retains rectorship of St Thomas's, which acquires the adjacent rectory. Charles Runge becomes first rector of St Paul's and moves into the new rectory in Roslyn Road. Geoffrey Tiarks is chaplain aboard HMS Vanguard, which brings the Royal Family to Cape Town
1948 The newly elected Nationalist government legalises racial discrimination.
1950 Runge resigns. Geoffrey Tiacks (MA. RN retd) succeeds him.
1952 St Paul's School closes; the building is developed as a parish hall.
1954 Tiarks leaves; Canon Jack Weatherstone (MA,) succeeds him as rector.
1961 The Group Areas Act is passed.
1962 Weatherstone moves to the Eastern Cape and the second South African-born rector, Canon Harold Halvorson (LTh), is appointed. He discourages non-white parishioners from attending St Paul's in 1964. The organ and choir are moved to a new gallery at the 'west' end; a new porch and vestibule extend the nave. The entrance to the Lady Chapel is moved to the 'south' end of the main transept and the new door dedicated to those who fell in World War II.
1974 Halvorson retires.
1976 Third South African-born rector, Louis Bank (BSc BA BD), is appointed rector. He motivates for the return of non-white congregants to St Paul's.
1988 Bank (now Canon) moves to Stellenbosch.
1989 Robert (Bob) Commin (BA (Hons) BTh) returns from England to become the fourth South African-born rector at St Paul's. The parish becomes increasingly representative of the community it serves.
1997 Wilma Jakobsen (BSc HDipEd MDiv STM) is appointed University Chaplain and becomes the first woman priest attached to St Paul's.

The Rev. Wilma Jakobsen
2000 Luke Stubbs (PhD) appointed rector.
2004 Luke Stubbs resigns and Louis Bank become intentional interim minister.
2005 Derek Pratt (BA, MTh) appointed rector.
Christopher Swartz (DipTh) appointed Chaplain to UCT.
2012 Christopher Swartz resigns.
2013 Matt Esau appointed Chaplain to UCT.
2015 Darron Misplon appointed Assistant Priest.
2016 Derek Pratt retires.