The story of Northcote Baptist Church began in 1949 as a Sunday School in the home of Joseph and Sarah Thompson at 7 Hillcrest Ave. Just four years earlier, during World War Two, after 32 years as missionaries in China, they were forced under threat from the invading Japanese forces to escape from the coastal area where they were working.
Back in New Zealand they finally settled in Northcote where they saw a need, and started a Sunday school. The school quickly grew under their leadership and with the assistance and encouragement of local farmers, Mr and Mrs Eban and their family.
Within a few years…
- The first minister/pastor of Northcote Baptist Church, Rev. Doug Rushbrook, arrived in the district during 1964;
- In 1962 Mr and Mrs Eban subdivided their farm and made a gift to the new Church of two sections at the end of Sylvia Road (Eban Ave was not complete at that stage);
- The church building was shifted to Sylvia Road in late 1963; and
- The present auditorium was opened on 5 August 1973 (most of the interior finishing and fittings was done by volunteers).