Subscribe      List an Event or Business      Invite a Writer      Write for WN      Writers      Other Locations      HubGarden      Recipes
1 million Australian readers every month      list your event

The Heavenly Queen Temple

Home > Melbourne > Escape the City | Historic Houses
by Clay Steele (subscribe)
Insouciant bon-vivant and erstwhile troubadour prone to verbose verbiage.
Published July 3rd 2012
Heavenly Queen Railroad View
The Heavenly Queen Temple from the Railroad


A recent review I wrote on the Britannia Hotel got me thinking about other mysterious, seemingly abandoned buildings around Melbourne's west. Anyone travelling on a train between Footscray and the city would espy the lonesome looking Heavenly Queen Temple. As long as I can remember this austere looking building has appeared to be under construction, but how long can a building such as this be vacant and remain cost effective?

Temple Arch
Beautiful architecture


On my way to Footscray Market I decided to drive down Joseph Rd, possibly the quietest street in Footscray. Amusingly the signage for the temple doesn't appear until you're a good 200 metres down this ostensibly dead-end road.

Temple Signage
Interestingly positioned signage


At the end of Joseph Rd you come to the car park which has a gate, chain and padlock attached, but open. In another incongruity there are two signs on the gate that contradict each other "Private Property - Trespassers Prosecuted" and "Open 9:30am - 3:30pm".

Temple Private Property
Private property...


Temple 9to3
...or open for business


Going under the theory that I could argue against prosecution before Her Majesty by virtue of the latter sign I pressed on into the car park - quite an extensive car park for a building that apparently receives no visitors (and in fact does not welcome trespassers).

The building up close is very impressive in the morning sun. With a traditional looking Chinese arch and a number of seats it would certainly be a wonderful place to meditate, reflect on life or take some touristy happy-snaps. Unfortunately in another ironic juxtaposition this edifice to Buddhist acceptance is surrounded by a chain-link fence.

Temple Chain Link
Paradise fenced off

See below for some rather dramatic time lapse footage.



Happily having viewed the rear end of the Heavenly Queen herself from the morning train I was able to greet her face-to-face by skirting the perimeter of the building, scattering seagulls who clearly aren't used to human company at this venue. The gold coloured statue is a beautiful work and is certainly what grabbed my attention each morning from the train as it forded the Maribyrnong.

Temple Statue Front
The Heavenly Queen herself


Visiting the Temple's website you wouldn't know that it has been closed for as long as I have caught trains past it. I do notice that there are menu items for Committee 1, Committee 2 and Committee 3 - with so many committees it is small wonder nothing gets done! I guess I will just have to practice the patience of the Buddha.

Temple Sunshine
watch this space...
Help us improve  Click here if you liked this article  32
Share: email  facebook  twitter
Why? Nirvana awaits
When: Between 9am and 3pm according to one sign
Where: 20 Joseph Rd Footscray
Cost: At the moment a possible trespassing charge
Your Comment
It's getting built by a small group of volunteers, slowly.
by AustS (score: 0|4) 1897 days ago
I have been fascinated by this large statue for years, and wondered why it never seems to get finished, now I know. Thanks for the article.
by janef (score: 2|105) 1705 days ago
Articles from other cities
Featured
Foodi Photoh Classie
Top Events
Popular Articles
Categories
Lists
Questions