St. John's was not outstanding, but historically
it was the first Church, erected in India along
the lines laid down by the Ecclesiological society
embodying the new principles of Gothic Architecture.
In 1858, it was a novel architectural experiment
in India but it paved the way for the high Victorian
buildings both secular and ecclesiastical that
were to become the hallmark of the British architecture,
in style, the walls are of rubble faced with
coursed kurla stone. The piers, arches, consignees
and dressings are of Probunder Stone. The roof
is an open one of varnished teak-wood with a
pitch of 50 The height is 60 feet and the chancel
arch is 50 feet.
the base of this arch on the south side, stands
the stone pulpit with a big reading desk on
the other corresponding side. The floor of the
chancel is of encaustic tiles imported from
England. The windows have stained glass imported
Choir stall are suitable and solid, with high
backs pierced with open squares containing flowery
rod iron designs. The alter rails are of brass
supported by brass standards at suitable intervals.
The chancel floor was completed only, in 1903
to match the sanctuary floor that had been put
down in 1882. The fine marble lectein arrived
on May 2, 1865 and the base was added in 1890.
screen near the front was done by Mr.
Higgins, one of the most eminent metal workers
in England who had come to Bombay to superintend
Church bells were unique being the only ones
in use in West India. They were donated by Sir
Charles Cayzer of Gertomore Pertshire, a former
resident of Colaba.They were donated to commemorate
his wedding and costed him Rs. 8,000 They were
made by John Taylor.
Church was an important addition to the Churches
in Bombay, since its tall towers when spotted
by the Sailors coming into Bombay by sea, gave
them a sense of home coming as it represented
the architecture that they had left behind at
home. The calmness and
serenity around St. John's Church created
a spiritual haven for them.
Along with the construction
of St. John Church a Chaplain's residence was
also built at Colaba. In the Church there is
a huge comemorative plaque with the following
words, "This Church was built in memory
of the officers whose names are written on the
wall of the Chancel and the non commissioned
officers and private soldiers, to many to be
recorded, who fell mindful of their duty, by
sickness or by the sword in the campaign of
the Sind and Afghanistan, A.D. 1837-1843."
fifty memorial tablet commemorating officers
and members of the British army who died in
the Afghan war (1879-87) were added over the
main entrance of the Church. Besides these there
are a few more commemorative plaques in the
Sir George Llyod, who
was the Governor of Bombay by the infantry
of lord Napier of magdela and carried through
Afghanistan and deposited in the Church
Philip Anderson the Chaplain of Colaba for
seven years who died on the 13th of December
1857 is remembered by his congregation.
The Chaplain was also well known as a historian