Lucknow's 147-year-old bluestone church was tipped to draw a crowd on auction day, and even with COVID-19 restrictions, that's exactly what it did.
Around 60 people went to Friday's auction to see St John the Evangelist Church pass from the Anglican Diocese of Bathurst into private property.
The historic church which had a price guide of about $360,000 sold for $430,000, according to real estate agent David Dent.
"There was a huge amount of interest," the agent said, which he wasn't "overly surprised" by.
"There's always a lot of interest in bluestone churches, they are very appealing.
"I don't think it's just in Orange [either]," he added.
Unlike a lot of recent property purchases in the Orange region, the buyer of the Lucknow church wasn't from Sydney, he added.
It's understood the former place of worship will be converted into accommodation for Airbnb.
For comparison, the nightly-rate for another church-conversation currently listed on Airbnb that's a similar distance from Orange as the Lucknow church starts at $200 a night.
Prior to the church going under the hammer, Mr Dent told the property website Domain.com.au that some of the interested parties who enquired after the property hoped to spend between $200,000 and $250,000 to convert it, while others were looking at "three-quarters of a million".
He added that potential buyers had contacted him from as far away as Adelaide and south-east Queensland.
Among the 60-strong spectators who turned out on Friday to see the Anglican church auctioned off were members of the parish. In some cases, they represented several generations of the same family who had attended services at the church.
In recent years as the parish of Lucknow dwindled, services at the church had been reduced to once a month.
The church's warden Deidre Beasley said the parish had one last service right before the scheduled auction. She added that the auction itself had proved quite emotional for those in attendance.
When St John the Evangelist was erected around 1873, it replaced a bark hut. It was consecrated in 1896.
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