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Cranston Parish Church

A Category B Listed Building in Midlothian East, Midlothian

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Latitude: 55.8793 / 55°52'45"N

Longitude: -2.9857 / 2°59'8"W

OS Eastings: 338431

OS Northings: 665566

OS Grid: NT384655

Mapcode National: GBR 70LG.D8

Mapcode Global: WH7V7.3HJ6

Plus Code: 9C7VV2H7+PP

Entry Name: Cranston Parish Church

Listing Name: Cranstoun Riddel, Cranstoun Parish Church, Including Churchyard, Boundary Walls, Gatepiers and Gates

Listing Date: 22 January 1971

Category: B

Source: Historic Scotland

Source ID: 331185

Historic Scotland Designation Reference: LB766

Building Class: Cultural

Location: Cranston

County: Midlothian

Electoral Ward: Midlothian East

Parish: Cranston

Traditional County: Midlothian

Tagged with: Church building

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1824. Restored 1861, Wardrop. Enlarged circa 1875, Wardrop and Reid. T-plan Gothic kirk with 3-stage tower and enlarged N aisle. Droved, tooled and polished sandstone ashlar. Diagonal buttresses with crocketed and pinnacled spirelets to nave, octagonal castellations on tower. Splayed window surrounds with sloping sills. Base, string and eaves course.

E (PRINCIPAL) ELEVATION: TOWER: 1st stage: hoodmoulded pointed segmental doorway, 2-leaf boarded door with curved wrought-iron hinges; pointed segmental architraved doorway to left return; lancet window in architraved arched surround to right return, later stone lean-to in re-entrant angle with N elevation; inset plaque above door inscribed ERECTED IN 1824, DESTROYED BY FIRE IN 1861 AND RESTORED THE SAME YEAR, string course above, diagonal buttresses to each corner, stepped at each stage. 2nd stage: hoodmoulded, pointed segmental 2-light window with multifoil light above to each face, diagonal buttresses to each corner terminating in sloped skew. 3rd stage: pointed segmental louvred 2-light window with multifoil light above to each face, architraved coping, octagonal buttresses to each corner terminating in castellated towers.

S ELEVATION: pair of hoodmoulded, pointed segmental 3 trefoil topped lights with paired hexagon lights above; stepped gabled buttresses between (marble sundial plate from old church, dated 1797 inset) and to flanks of windows, diagonal buttress of W elevation to W end, diagonal stepped buttress with gablets terminating in stepped crocket and pinnacle spire to right return (E gable end), decorative balustrade adjoining rear buttress of tower.

W (REAR) ELEVATION: gable end with central pointed segmental 4-light window, inset marble memorial plaque below, diagonal stepped buttresses to corners with gablets terminating in stepped crocket and pinnacle spire, squared floreate finial surmounting, architraved skew moulding with bellcote on apex.

N ELEVATION: original elevation now concealed by post 1861 extension to Lord Stair's gallery comprising: projecting gable to centre with hoodmoulded, pointed segmental 2-light window with 4 vertical lights above, heavy architraved gablehead moulding (ornate stone cross on apex) merging with diagonal stepped buttresses with gablets surmounting, blind to right return with lean-to porch with door to left and window in right return in re-entrant angle of main body of church, further diagonal stepped buttresses to corner with gablets terminating in stepped crocket and pinnacle spire, squared floreate finial surmounting; squared porch to left return of gallery with central window and door to left return, further pair of sloped gables with diagonal stepped buttresses to corners with gablets (one terminating in stepped crocket and pinnacle spire, other damaged) and decorative balustrade adjoining rear of tower.

Fixed multi-pane lights of diamond quarry (plain glass to most, some with decorative coloured Gothic borders); elaborate coloured and stained glass to paired windows in S aisle. Piended grey slate roof with lead ridging and flashing to main body of church, nave and side porch. Cast-iron rainwater goods and hoppers.

INTERIOR: flat-vaulted and galleried interior; Gothic bordered stained glass to main windows; pipe organ added (earlier 20th century) to one of the galleries, timber pews.

CHURCHYARD: various dated headstones and Celtic, Gothic and Classical sepulchral memorials sited within landscaped grounds; coursed rubble walls with squared rubble copes; rubble gatepiers (to N of churchyard), square neck copes supporting pyramidal capitals, wrought-iron pedestrian gate consisting of ovals with curled bracket details.

BOUNDARY WALL: sited to N of driveway, part of Oxenfoord policies boundary wall incorporating 3-bay building with central raised arch and lower doors to remaining bays (now roofless)

GATEPIERS AND GATES: Bronze memorial plaque affixed to boundary wall: "TO THE GLORY OF GOD AND IN MEMORY OF REV RODERICK MURCHISON, FIRST MINISTER OF THE UNITED CONGREGATION OF CRANSTOUN, CRICHTON AND FORD. 1949-1957. THESE GATES WERE ERECTED BY THE CONGREGATION, FRIENDS AND FAMILY". Squared vermiculated sandstone ashlar piers with squared cushion capitals with projecting neck copes and smaller square flat capitals holding black wrought-iron thistles with gold heads, plain wrought-iron fence linking piers to walls. Gates: pair of open wrought-iron work gates with plain bars alternately topped with gold fleur-de-lis finials or left plain, gates arching downwards to middle; centre of each gate bearing round decorative shield: Cranstoun, Ford, Crichton written in gold (to left gate), circle with cross containing gold inner circle and smaller gold cross to each quarter (on right gate)

Statement of Interest

The present church was built at the sole expense of General Sir John Dalrymple (of Oxenfoord). It was to replace the old church, which was sited in the old burial grounds to the south of Oxenfoord Castle's gardens. It had been damaged by fire in 1796 and rebuilt in 1798, but was finally replaced in 1824. The sundial from the old church was transferred to the new building. Originally the vestry was above the entrance in the tower, but a new one was built. It is suggested that strong architectural similarities exist between this church and the 1816 kirk of Kincardine-in-Monteith, designed by Richard Crichton. The 1824 structure was damaged by fire in 1861. It was quickly repaired and enlarged by Wardrop who added to the Dalrymple aisle, situated in the north of the church. By the middle of the 20th century, the interior was slightly altered, with the lowering of the pulpit and further pews added. It now serves for the united congregation of Cranstoun, Crichton and Ford. The manse, which was re-sited from beside the Lion's Gate of Prestonhall House by William Burn Callander in 1835, has now been sold as a private house. The newer cemetery for the church can be found on the B6372.

External Links

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