Built in 1954, St Barbara’s Catholic Church is significant because it is historically connected with the uranium mining industry at Rum Jungle.
The church, which was built on the site of the former 1940s Royal Australian Air Force Chapel, was constructed by Irish miners employed at Rum Jungle by the British firm George Wimpey and Co. Pty. Ltd.
The church retains much of its original features and fabric and demonstrates economic design principles. The method and materials used in constructing the church walls (recycled timber and prefabricated steel) are unique and architecturally significant.
St. Barbara’s Church was named after the patron saint for architects, builders, carpenters, construction workers, explosives workers, geologists and miners, all of whom worked on the Rum Jungle uranium project. St. Barbara also protects against explosions and mine collapse. The church represents the provision of worship for the past and present community in and around Batchelor.