The St. James Anglican church which was built in 1842 is considered as the second story building in Nigeria. It is located in Ota, Ogun state. It is believed to be one of the locations Samuel Ajai Crowther resided and worked as an Anglican missionary and translated the Bible to Yoruba.
To commemorate Ogun State at 40, the state government and the church are working together rehabilitate and restore the building to its former glory. The state government who is the financier of the project granted the contract to a Lagos-based architectural firm, Total Consult.
It proved to be a great decision, as the firm as recently completed the project ahead the state anniversary celebration. Total Consult has a history of redesigning historic buildings in Nigeria. This is evident in their transformation of the old, colonial Broad Street Prison to theme park, Freedom Park, which has now become the hub of artsy, musical, and cultural gatherings in Lagos.
When Mr Theo Lawson, Creative Head at Total Consult, was asked about the project, he said “It’s a personal interest of mine and Total Consult has a whole to save historical buildings in Nigeria.”
Also, when asked if he has plans to take up on more historical buildings across the country he said, “I won’t go out of my way to look for buildings, am searching for old buildings to expose their current status, and bring attention of Nigerians and the government to such buildings, so if any government wants to renovate such building we are up to the task”
It is important we preserve historical buildings and landmarks, for posterity. How else can we secure the identity of our people? How else can we educate and inform present and future generations about their past?