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Bequest and legacy stories

Creating lasting impact – legacy stories.

Lancelot’s wide-reaching impact

Edward Eagar Lodge

Imagine giving a gift that translates into more than one million nights of accommodation for people experiencing homelessness?

When Lancelot Iredale left a chapel as a gift in his Will to Wesley Mission, little did he know the lasting and widereaching impact he would have. And his legacy lives on to this day.

Lancelot understood that lives could be changed. Prior to arriving in Australia he’d been a convict, being sentenced for seven years for burglary.

But after arriving in Sydney in 1816 aboard the Mariner, Lancelot was given a fresh start. And he used it to transform his life. A blacksmith by trade, he began a successful hardware business and became a philanthropist. But Lancelot’s reform also came from his deeply rooted faith. In 1847 he built a chapel at his own expense and left it as a gift in his Will to the Wesleyan Methodist denomination. 


Lancelot Iredale: Painted by Richard Read, October 1830

Days after Lancelot passed away in 1848, he was remembered at a city council meeting for his generosity. On 17 July 1848 The Sydney Morning Herald wrote, “For many years he had been actively connected with almost every charitable institution in the colony: by his death the poor had lost a liberal benefactor and the citizens at large a sincere friend.”

Lancelot’s generous gift is still touching lives today. In 1978 the chapel building was redeveloped into accommodation for people in need in the community. Now known as Wesley Edward Eagar Centre, situated in the heart of Sydney’s inner-city, it supports vulnerable adults in the community with short-term emergency accommodation and their next steps forward. Lancelot’s philanthropic legacy lives on through the men and women who’ve found hope and experienced transformation through his generosity.

And thanks to generosity of people who’ve left gifts to Wesley Mission in their Will, their legacy also lives on through the recent refurbishment of Wesley Edward Eagar Centre, which was partially funded by legacy gifts.


Lancelot Iredale: Painted by Richard Read, October 1830

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For more information on the difference your gift in Will can make, download our Bequest brochure.

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