George & Annie TorrancePrint Page Print this page

Photographs supplied by Chris McLaughlin

The marble tablet commemorates George William Torrance (1835 - 1907), clergyman, organist and composer, and his wife Annie Julia Torrance. Dr Torrance and his wife died in Ireland in 1907 within a few days of each other. 

Torrance arrived at Williamstown in the Thomas Stephens on 15 December 1869. He was appointed to Christ Church, South Yarra, in February 1870 and next year became acting curate at St John's, La Trobe Street. In 1872 he was appointed acting principal of Trinity College, later affiliated with the University of Melbourne, which was opened in February. Torrance continued at St John's until 1877 when he was appointed to All Saints, Geelong.

He was at Holy Trinity, Balaclava, from 1878 to 1895, when the permanent church was built to J. Reed's design and a fine three-manual organ, built by G. Fincham, was installed. Torrance also acted as organist in 1880-82, donating his fee to the organ fund. The £600 it cost was fully paid by 1885 through Father Torrance giving recitals, collecting subscriptions and acting as the church organist to save the salary. He was dubbed ‘the disappearing parson’ because after finishing prayers he vanished behind the screen to play the organ.


Address:175 - 177 Chapel Street, Holy Trinity Anglican Church, Balaclava, 3183
GPS Coordinates:Lat: -37.870761
Long: 144.989616
Note: GPS Coordinates are approximate.
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Monument Type:Plaque
Monument Theme:People


Front Inscription

To the glory of God

And in affectionate memory of George William Torrance M.A., Mus. Doc. who died at Kilkenny Ireland

19th August 1907.

And of Annie Julia his wife who died at the same place

17th August 1907.

Dr. Torrance was seventeen years Incumbent of this Parish from 1878 to end of 1894.

They were beloved by all who knew them

Source: MA,ADB
Monument details supplied by Monument Australia - www.monumentaustralia.org.au
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